As a rule I don’t write solely about personal experiences. But today I am making an exception.
Yesterday was a hard day for us. We lost our best canine friend of 13 years—Our Clio.
Clio was “The best dog in the world.” You could ask her yourself and she’d tell you! We’d say: “Clio, Who’s the best dog in the world?” And she would sit up, bark and raise her right paw in the air. If you asked, she would tell you she loved you too. We’d say: “Clio do you love me?” and she would respond with “Arf Arf arf!” (That’s “I love you in canine” if you are not familiar.) She was liberal with her kisses too. I would often put my cheek to her face and say “Kisses for Mama!” And she would give me a good wet puppy kiss. She was the only dog we knew who “spooned” and wanted to cuddle all the time. She would “yell” at us to make room for her on the couch, “talk” to us when she wanted a treat, and stand at the bottom of the steps “grunting” at us that it was “Time to go up for bed” at night. Clio loved adventures— chasing deer, and groundhogs, and losing the occasional battle against the local skunks. She would light up with enthusiasm running through the farm fields and our woods or swimming in our pond. She even got excited about car rides and canoeing. She loved her adventures so much that the pads of her feet were like sandpaper from all the running she did. Because of that we nick-named her “Ms. Sandpaper Toes.” She was indeed “The Best Dog in the World.”
When we told Gracie that Clio went to be in heaven with God she started to cry and turned away. She yelled: “No! I will tell God not to take her yet! He has to send her back! Let me see her!” She ran into the living room and stood there crying and looking at the couch where Clio normally rested. I grabbed her up in my arms and held her as we both cried. When she stopped crying Grace looked up at me with a smile and said: “This means Clio gets a new body. A new smile and new toes… no more sandpaper toes…”
When I tucked Gracie in bed last night we snuggled for a little while and I started to cry… again.
“Why are you crying, Mama? Are you sad about Clio?”
“Yes, I’m sad about Clio.” I said.
“Don’t cry. I will sing you a song that will make you feel better.” And then Gracie rubbed my cheeks and sang this to me:
I KNOW Clio is in heaven,
She has a new nose, a new smile and new toes.
God says “Do not cry. I will make you better, I will make you better, I will make you better.”
Clio is in heaven with new white fluffs all over….
And God says “I will make you better. I will make you better.”
Clio is in Heaven.
To the Best Dog in the Whole World… Clio~ You will be missed. We are so thankful that God blessed us with you. What a joy you were to us for 13 years. You were and always will be “Our ‘first baby.’” We know you were an angel sent to us, and we will always have a Clio shaped hole in our hearts. You weren’t just the best dog… you were also the best Loved dog in the Whole World.