Why I have been MIA lately…

by | My life as an artist | 30 comments

This is not going to be the most fun post I have ever written but my life is not just about art…

You may have been wondering why I have been MIA for a little while and the reason is:ย  I have been licking my wounds…
It has been about 6 weeks since my little dog Poppy died… and adjusting to life after sharing it with a fur baby for over 16 years is not easy!
It’s taken me so long to write this post, many attempts and many tears ๐Ÿ˜‰

โ€œIf you don’t own a dog, at least one,
there is not necessarily anything wrong with you,
but there may be something wrong with your life.โ€ย 

โ€•ย Roger Caras

I remember meeting my best friend so clearly…

I still remember the day when him and I met, onย a sunny afternoon in August 2012…
Since I had lost my childhood dog (I was 16 and he was 14), I always felt like something was missing…
It’s true what they say: having a dog means you are never alone!

All my child memories had a dog in it but because my first dog was always there, I took him for granted (I was just a toddler so I didn’t know any better).
It’s only when he passed away and when I felt the hole in my heart that I understood.
It took me about 3 years to stop crying about him whenever I thought of him!
I couldn’t wait to have another dog in my life but my adventures from France to the UK, Australia and back to the UK meant I couldn’t commit to getting another dog until I knew I wasn’t going to move anymore ๐Ÿ˜‰

So when I moved back to Australia in July 2012 with no plans of leaving again, I immediately started searching for my canine companion.
I just could not wait!!! And it didn’t matter what kind of breed he would be, I just wanted to hold him and love him…

It didn’t take long until I noticed an ad in the newspaper (yes, newspaper! Do you remember the days??!) for a litter of Miniature Maltese puppies…
I rang and there was one left!! It was destiny! I didn’t have a car so I hoped on a train with a big shoulder bag and a towel at the bottom (you know, ”just in case” I wouldn’t come back home alone) and made the 1.5 hour journey out to West Sydney. Who was I kidding anyway… I already loved that puppy before I even met him!

The lady was kind enough to pick me up from the station and I when got to her home, she told me to hang on for a moment.
She soon returned and gently deposited a tiny white fluff ball into my arms… It was pure LOVE at first sight. Excuse me while I grab a tissue… or 10 ๐Ÿ˜‰

She asked me if I wanted to keep him and I am pretty sure I looked back at her as if she was seriously deranged…
Lady, you cannot be sane if you think this pup is EVER going to leave my arms!!!
She took me back to the train station and while I sat in a corner on the train with the most adorable puppy at the bottom of my bag on the seat next to me, I just couldn’t believe how lucky I was!!
The trip home dragged on a bit and it didn’t long for the fluff ball to start popping his head between the shoulder straps to see what was going on out there ๐Ÿ™‚
I do know how I managed to hide him on the train then on the bus all the way home hahaha

The rest is history…

Once we were home, I took care of him day and night, no matter what. He was sooo adorable and so precious, I couldn’t get enough of him!
I must have said ”you are so cute…” in a gushy girly way at least a millions times during his life, and I am not exaggerating!
What a joy to teach him little things like climbing one step or shaking hands…

Poppy1

We were both so young then!

He followed me wherever I went, would try to pull my leg for attention when I was on the phone, and made me laugh so much with his little manners!
I tried to give him space and let him sleep in another room at first but one stormy weather frightened him and what kind of person leaves a frightened puppy alone?
By my side of the bed he slept forever after ๐Ÿ˜‰

I can honestly I never met (now or then) a dog with such personality! And I wouldn’t have changed any of it for anything in the world ๐Ÿ˜‰
He had a very long, healthy life, full of naps by the warm heater or in the sun, of delicious chicken breast (his favourite), of running around at the beach, fun roadtrips and so many cuddles…

Poppy2

The best life a dog could want!

All goods things must come to an end they say and even though I never thought about it, there is no other way…

Getting used to feeling stressed…

Stress is not something I welcome and I’ve always managed it in small doses throughout my life but…
When it comes to my dog, everything goes out the window!!

The last year of Poppy’s life was really stressful (for me mostly) as we found out he had doggy dementia (Alzheimer) and kidney disease ๐Ÿ™
I will write another post about how we what we did to manage all that for those of you who may be in a similar situation!

We had no idea when the end would come, all that mattered was to make sure Poppy wasn’t in pain in physically and psychologically.

Towards the end though, dementia felt contagious as Pete and I would take turns at night to look after Poppy, just so one of us could at least get a little sleep.
I would read posts in Facebook groups (this one is great if you are looking after a senior dog) and everyone would say ”you will know when the time is right” (you know, to make that awful decision for your dog)…
The truth is, no matter how often I asked myself that, I just didn’t know when the time would be right. There would be moments I’d think ”oh no, is this it???” and then it would be ”no you silly, everything is fine!”.
So… Up and down I went on the emotional roller coaster, for months and months, constantly on the lookout for a ”sign”….
(I will write another post about ”when the time is right” because that’s a big topic which I hope will help others)

This is the End… My only friend, the End…

I had to finally make the decision, and once I did, things happened very quickly because I knew there was no more time to waste.
I called the vet to make an appointment for the following day. He came along with a nurse and everything was sad of course, but overall quite peaceful…
And certainly not as bad as I had anticipated because I made the decision, it wasn’t made for me when I wasn’t expecting it…

We were living on the edge of the sword for so long (meaning we knew Poppy could go suddenly) so we had been prepared about what to do next.
Most people cremate their dog but when I found out that you actually have to leave your dog with the vet ”after” (or in our case the vet would have taken him away), and that it can take up to 12 hours for the cremation to happen I thought…
1. There is no way I want to EVER be separated from my dog
2. How do I know what ashes I am getting back? Is it really my dog??
There was no question about it, we decided to bury him in our garden.

I had found a beautiful little chest and lined it up with his nicest little dog clothes, his cute ties that made him look so cheeky and his favourite toys.
We wrapped him in his soft fleece blanked and laid him on top, closed the lid and Pete and I lowered the chest into the ground.
I placed his dog bowl on top of the chest, as you would place a flower for a person, and we filled the hole.
We felt sad but strangely at peace too and it was so good to do this together…
After cleaning the house a little, weย checked out a couple of nurseries and purchased a lovely bird bath, glass pebbles and some pretty flowers…
Drove back home and made a beautiful memorial for our beloved Poppy that we can go to whenever we want.

Looking up!

Now it’s all about finding ways to cope and getting used to the idea… I can tell you that 6 weeks later, it hurts way more than right after.
I think I felt numb for quite a while but after printing some photos of all 3 of us having fun and hanging them on the wall last week, reality decided to sink in!
When the tears come, I just let them come, even if it happens when I’m walking in the street (triggers are everywhere and it can happen anytime)…
But deep down, I know my Poppy is happier now, he had an amazing long life, filled with love, road trips, chicken breast and crunchy things (popcorn and doritos!), and millions of hugs and kisses.

And even though I pushed myself to write about the bad time, from now on I choose to only remember the good stuff.
And before long, there will be another fluff ball to love and hug and kiss because, a life is not complete without a dog in it ๐Ÿ™‚

“Dogs come into our lives to teach us about love and loyalty.
They depart to teach us about loss.
A new dog never replaces an old dog; it merely expands the heart.
If you have loved many dogs, your heart is very big.”

โ€“ Erica Jong

Poppy3

Love you always Poppy!

30 Comments

  1. Each dog I have owned has filled my heart so much. It hurts so when you lose one. After my last one died unexpectedly, I just didn’t know if I could go through the pain again but after 2 weeks, I knew I had to have a dog! I now have 2 lovelies and they fill my life with so much joy. I’m so sorry for your loss of your beloved Poppy. May your heart be at ease and your memories full of the joy of having known such a sweet pup.

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Hi Cecilia, I can’t imagine my life without a dog either, there’s is just a hole! A little puppy will be joining us soon but that doesn’t take the pain of losing Poppy away of course… Thank you so much for your lovely message, I really appreciate it ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Hi Mimi, I cried reading your post and I am so, so sorry about your loss. It’s so very hard to lose a beloved pet.. It brought back memories of my beloved two dogs. Sally a Lab/Alsatian cross and Sam a small golden retriever cross. Dogs are such precious friends and they are our babies too. We invest all our love in to them. We lost dear Sally in 2008 aged 13 from canine Penphagus. After that we invested every bit of love we had in to our dear Sam, both dogs were rescue dogs which we got at young ages. Sam in particular had a horrific first 6 months of life until he came in to our life one freezing night in February 2002. The kids next door brought him to us and he was so thin, cold and frightened. We took him in straight away. His story wasn’t pleasant so I won’t say anymore about that. We got him fixed up at the vet the next day and although he had fear issues he was the most loving and loyal dog anyone could wish for, so was Sally. Him and Sally became firm friends. He became blind in late 2003 due to congenital cataracts. At that time we hadn’t any money so we took out a loan based on our house so we could get a new lens put in one eye so he would be able to see again. The surgery was still in its infancy and only a handful of vets in the country could do it so we had to travel 110 miles to have it done but it was the best thing we ever did. Our beloved Sam had sight in one eye until the day he died. In 2011 he developed a heart murmur and a thyroid problem. The vets kept him well for 18 months until Christmas Day 2012 when he had a stroke. We took him to the emergency vet but there was nothing he could do for him. He was suffering because he was fighting to breathe. We made the most difficult decision we ever have to make for a beloved pet. He was put to sleep in our arms and he died peacefully at 9 pm Christmas night. We cried and sobbed over his little warm but lifeless body. We left him with the vet as we were reassured that he would be cremated on his own as long as we paid extra for it which we did. We have his ashes along with Sally’s and Tom, the cat, in a safe place in the wardrobe. All 3 animals are going in the coffin of whichever of us dies first. We are in our late 60 now. We cried solidly for 6 months after losing Sam and tears are streaming down my face writing this.

    It took us 3 years to feel we could have another dog but in December 2015 we found ourselves bringing home our beloved miniature poodle, Rosie. Rosie has helped to heal our hearts but she can never replace Sally or Sam. Poor Rosie has fear issues which we didn’t know at the time. It makes us love her more. We protect her and we have help from a vet behaviourist who is educating us in how to care for her. She will always be with us but being in our late 60s now and Rosie is 3 she could out live us so we are making provisions for her in our will and the local Dog Trust will take her if and when anything happens to both of us. They will ensure she gets a good home with an older couple who will be trained to care for her as we do. I am disabled but my cousin and carer who I have shared the iast 32 years of my life with takes her out and does the more demanding work with her that I can’t do but I do fulfil a very important role, as major playmate in the house, lol. She sleeps with me on my bed as I never move once I am in bed and Rosie knows a good thing when she sees it, lol.

    I really hope that when you are ready you will do your beloved Poppy the greatest honour you can ever do him and that’s give your love to another dog. It will take time but you will feel ready to love another dog. It’s just a shame they don’t live as long as we do.
    I am sending all my love, hugs and empathy to you, Mimi. God bless you. xxxxxxxxx

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Hi Sally, thank you so much for sharing your story with me! Your doggies are so, so lucky to have you and your husband. You are very loving and caring people to dogs and I thank you so much for that! People who are cruel with animals should be shot ๐Ÿ™ ๐Ÿ™ ๐Ÿ™ They have such beautiful souls all they deserve is love and affection. I don’t want to live without a dog if I can and a new furry companion will be joining us soon ๐Ÿ˜‰ I will definitely share that with you all. Thank you again for your support, I really appreciate it ๐Ÿ™‚ Love to you! xxxx

  3. Que d’รฉmotion en te lisant. Je partage votre peine. la douleur va s’attรฉnuer avec le temps, sois en sรปre.

    Ton Petit Poppy repose en paix et il restera toujours dans mon coeur.

    Je vous embrasse fort et courage ๐Ÿ˜™

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Merci, c’est gentil ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ Gros bisous!

  4. Oh Mimi your beautiful words brought my tears forth as I know so well what itโ€™s like to lose a little dog. You were a wonder & loving mum for your little Poppy who brought you so much love & joy for such a long time. I send you my love. Mandy

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Thank you so much for your support Mandy. I am sure Poppy and Molly are now together somewhere beautiful ๐Ÿ™‚ Much love back to you xxx mimi

  5. I cry whit you. Reading this makes me feel the pain. We lost our friend this year April after 16 years of caring and sharing. There is not a day that I don’t miss him. But I remember the quote from winny the pooh: im glad I had something that makes saying goodbye so hard. Never feel bad for you’re feelings. Take time to recover from this lost.
    Wishes you the best.
    Love from Holland

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Awww thank you so much Tamara, what a lovely quote, I will make sure to remember it! And I’m so sorry for your loss too xxx

  6. Oh honey, my heart goes out to you. Loss is terribly hard, so yes, take the time you need to grieve. Know that there is a great warm cloud of love for you out there. It can envelop you like a big warm hug that I am imagining coming to you now.
    Sunshine and hugs, from your fan, Laura Pruitt

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      That is so lovely of you to say Laura, I feel it!!! I appreciate the love, thank you! ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Oh my heart goes out to you. I know exactly what you are going through. All of my dogs have lived to a minimum of 16years and have had to be helped over the rainbow bridge. Just recently ( 2days ago) it was my 15yo cat, Cleocatra, she too had kidney disease and it was heart breaking watching her go down hill. I tried to let her go peacefully at home, but her big heart just didnโ€™t want to stop. When the vet sedated her it only took moments for her to pass, in my arms, knowing I was helping her. I am so sad, and still imagine Iโ€™m hearing her……but I know she gave me the best years of her life, and that gives me strength.
    You too have many happy memories, I hope that they give you strength too. Hugs to you from me. Xx
    Carole Day.

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Oh I’m so sorry for your recent loss Carole… It’s hard to make ”that” decision and so many people put themselves first and leave it for way too long ๐Ÿ™ I am glad my Poppy left while he was still ”winning”. Sending you some hugs back ๐Ÿ™‚ xxo

  8. Oh Mimi, I sit here crying, knowing your pain. I lost 2 fur babies in two years and it was almost more than I could bear. Little Poppy was an angel and I know you feel like a part of your heart is gone. Just know that the love you showed Poppy and the love you received from Poppy lives on eternally. Iโ€™m so sad to hear this news and I hope it will not be too long before you can open your heart to love another baby. I pray comfort and peace for you today. Much love, Melodie Wilson

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Thank you so much for your lovely words Melodie, I really appreciate them ๐Ÿ™‚ My heart is always open to dogs, they are the best thing on earth. They give us so much love ๐Ÿ™‚ Much love back to you xxo

  9. So sorry Mimi!! I know how hard that is. My condolences to you both.

    Hugs….Kim Ambrose โฃ๏ธ๐ŸŒบโฃ๏ธ

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Thank you so much Kim!! xxxo

  10. It’s so sad I’m so sorry. I had to put mine down 4 years ago. :o( I want to leave you with my favorite quote: “Don’t cry because it’s over ~SMILE because it happened” .

    Hugz, Zandra

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Thank you so much Zandra! Right now I smile and cry at the same time hahaha Hugs to you too!

  11. Oh Mimi,
    You poor thing. Such a terrible time for you. How lucky was Poppy to have such a loving home a beautiful mummy and wonderful life. Cherish all those beautiful memories and smile because you were so very lucky to have him and his love. Take care of yourself Mimi, cry, but smile too, because of what you had. xxx

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Thank you so much for your comforting words Maria. Yes he did have a great life and brought me so much joy. So I will keep on crying and smiling too ๐Ÿ™‚ xxo

  12. What wonderful memories and beautiful times you and Poppy shared together.
    Trusting these will keep you and comfort you until you’re ready to bring a second best friend into your home.
    I suspect Poppy will always hold that very special place in your heart.
    Sue

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Oh he always will Sue, I could never forget him and all the joy and support he gave me for all these years. There will be more paw prints on my heart before long ๐Ÿ˜‰ xxo

  13. Oh, Mimi – I have tears running down my cheeks as I read this. I know well the pain of saying goodbye to a pet, while at the same time cherishing the happy memories. Poppy was one lucky puppy to have had you for his whole life. And I whole heartedly agree with Roger Caras.

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      Sorry for making you cry Gail! I understand it resonated with your loss. It can never be easy. Thank you for your kind words ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

  14. I am so sorry for your loss Mimi. After losing my dog of 18 years last year it is just heart breaking! I love the quote about if you have loved many dogs, you have a big heart….you will love again ๐Ÿ™‚

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      It’s a beautiful quote isn’t it?? 18 years is an amazing life, you must have been a great mum ๐Ÿ™‚ Oh I have much more love to give, especially to a furry friend!!

  15. Mimi – my heart goes out to you! Losing a fur baby is so very hard and even with time – tears still come. Poppy was beautiful! I know all fur babies that I have lost have gone to the Rainbow Bridge to play and frolic. Sending warm hugs your way, Kathy Bradley

    Reply
    • Mimi Bondi

      I’m sure they are all happily playing together up there Kathy! Except my Poppy who wasn’t very sociable hahaha Thank you for the warm hugs, I appreciate them ๐Ÿ™‚ xxo

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Mimi Bondi Profile

Hi there, I'm Mimi!

Artist of Wonder โ™ฅ Author โ™ฅ Designer โ™ฅ Teacherย 
My style is vibrant, whimsical, expressive, full of positive energy!
From layering to collaging, throwing ink around, painting with my fingers…
To creating digital art… my creativity has no bounds!
I hope to share with you the joy and peace I experience when creating ๐Ÿ™‚

Mimi Bondi PETA Member - Protect our beautiful animals!

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