Her food and water bowls are both dry. I should have put them away, I guess. And there’s a big vacant spot in the kitchen where her bed has always been. There are so many empty spaces.
As I got out of bed this morning I looked to make sure she wasn’t lying there on the floor so I wouldn’t step on her. But of course, she wasn’t there. She wasn’t on her bed in the corner of our bedroom, either. And when I got back into bed for a few minutes, her sweet face wasn’t at the side of the bed, and she didn’t look at me with her big brown eyes. She didn’t jump up on the bed and snuggle, either.
Later as I walked back up the stairs, I heard her licking on the landing above. I jerked my head to see her, but that space was bare, too. I thought I saw her sitting at the front door, looking out the sidelights and searching for squirrels and rabbits to chase, if she could only get out there. Or lying on the floor in front of the TV. I really could almost see her there, but it was just a memory.
When I came in through the garage door I imagined her whining and waiting on the other side of the door, or “whistling” as we call it, because that’s what she sounds like when she is so excited to see us come back home. But it was very quiet. When I dozed off on the couch, she didn’t come and nuzzle my arm for one more trip outside. There were no dog hairs on the cushion, which always gave her away when she tried to sneak and sleep on the couch when we were gone.
Maggie is so much a part of our lives now. She was just perfect for us, even though we weren’t quite sure at first because she was so hard to get to know when we “rescued” her. But she filled up all the spaces of our lives. Maybe she rescued us from self centered activities and empty nest longings.
Tomorrow I will “rescue” her again, first thing in the morning, as soon as they open. We boarded her while we went on vacation, and there’s no pickup time until Monday morning. We can’t wait to see her again. I expect she’ll do some “whistling,” too.