Ok, folks. Buckle in your seat belts, get out your popcorn, silent your phone, it’s time for my final post. This one is about to get emotional.
I don’t know why I saved Coco for last. In my mind I told myself that I wasn’t going in particular order when discussing my dogs, though I knew that was a lie. From my previous posts you would think Bella would be my favorite dog, I practically shoved her on a pedestal like she was my own precious pageant child, so there would be some assumption as to which dog I loved the most. But a mother is never supposed to reveal her favorite child, and neither will I. However, a special place in my heart has always and will continue to belong to Coco.
My mom always used to tell me that Coco and I hated each other because we were too similar. I couldn’t see it when we first bought her, but now I do. The year was 2006, and I was seven-years-old. I hated Texas. Absolutely hated it. I hated that it was hot all the time, that it never rained, that I had no friends, and that I regretfully decided to paint my room Pepto-Bismol pink. The move was hard on all of us, particularly me and my older brother Colby. We had just lost Mandy a few years early, and felt a piece of the family missing, a void that could only be filled with the love of a dog.
So our family piled into our car and drove to a young couple’s house, who had just breed a litter of Shih Tzu puppies. We had heard about them through out neighbors, and they seemed trustworthy enough, so we went. Colby is the one who picked her out of the bunch. She clung to him from day one, and they made an instant bond. The same couldn’t be said for me.
She hated me, I hated her. That was it. She growled at me, bite at my face, wouldn’t even let me hold her. My mom had to lock her in the closest as punishment for biting at me, and eventually she stopped, but the hatred continued. Once Colby went away to college, she started to cling to my other brother Connor. Once he went away, she clung to my mom and my dad. At this point we had Chipper and Bella, so I was loved by others, but never by Coco.
The only way I can describe it is comparing it to the feud which Joan Crawford and Bette Davis shared. Coco was definitely Joan, no doubt about it, and I was Bette. Our What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? moment occurred when I got my wisdom teeth out. I was in a tremendous amount of pain. The doctor said he found five wisdom teeth instead of four (still never explained) and that because of this, he had to cut out more gum that he wanted to. Cutting out more gums led to more pain. More pain led to me being stuck on my sofa downstairs the whole month of July, watching RuPaul’s Drag Race on endless loop.
I said before that dogs, Shih Tzus in particular, have a certain sense of when people are in pain or if they are sad. I guess Coco sensed this, and sensed a feeling of pity for me, because she refused to leave my side. She slept with me day in and day out. She was glued to the blanket which was constantly draped over me. She brought me toys and let me hold her, and didn’t even growl. After I was better, and even until now, we have had a silent resilience towards each other. I now understand how similar we both are. Divas, dramatic, temperamental, but truly care for those who are closest to us.