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Hold simple things tightly
Military spouse
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My husband and I adopted Princess Zelda as a puppy about two months after we were engaged.
Two years later, she’s my roommate, best friend and the only family I have here while he’s away. And although she’s a far cry from the perfect dog, she keeps me sane when I feel alone.
I recently had a rather heart-stopping experience with her. As I was taking her outside, she decided to go one direction, while insisted we go another. Like I said, she isn’t the perfect dog. She somehow managed to wiggle her way out of her collar and quickly darted across the street.
Of course there was a car coming. It felt like my whole world stopped. I was sobbing and trembling. I know she’s just a dog, just an animal companion who depends on me to feed her. But because without her, this whole experience would feel so much lonelier, I immediately feared for the worst.
My mind went to how I would break the news to my deployed soldier, who seems to love her as much as he does me on most days. I thought of how less secure I would feel in my home without her there to alert me to someone approaching the door. I thought of having no one to snuggle with when that’s what I needed.
Thankfully, the car slowed and honked. The dog’s not stupid, at least not that stupid, so she quickly got out of the car’s way.
Isn’t it funny how the simplest things, like a pet or a letter or a five-minute phone conversation, hold our precarious lives together?
My experience served as an excellent reminder for me to, one, never take those simple things for granted, and two, make sure to fasten those collars tightly.

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