death and taxes and puppy love

mags ©alexashersears

My ambition in life is to someday be the person my dog thinks I am. – Emily Maugham

Three years ago today, I woke up to find Mags, my English bully, couldn’t breathe. As we rushed her to the vet, I thought to myself, April 15th. Death and taxes.

It was one of those days when life slaps you in the face with decisions that you don’t ever want to make. Never, never, ever. It was a long, awful day that stretched out into the night. I don’t think about regularly, but it creeps up on me every so often. Like today.

Or, in the last weeks, as I was helping with a benefit to help this awesome family that is fighting to keep their beloved rescued French bulldog, Stitch.

And the release of a new book by my friend Monica, an author and beyond incredible advocate for autism research, who writes about her late dog Hallie in a beautiful new anthology called Cherished: 21 Writers on Animals They Have Loved and Lost. (Monica joins Anne Lamott, Jane Smiley and others in sharing their stories, with royalties going to the Best Friend’s Animal Society.)

I’ve had Mags on the brain.

I grew up with some wonderful dogs, but Mags was the only one who was all mine. I adopted her while I was in college and had her the whole of my twenties. She was the most fantastic dog I have ever known – from LA to NY and beyond she was always by my side. But she generally could be found snoring at my feet as I wrote.

Oh, how quiet the house was without that snoring. I bought a white noise machine.

Almost a year later, when I got Tru, I realized any other dog I ever have will be mine through marriage and children. I regret those things didn’t happen when Mags was alive because she adored babies. She adored everyone. Except other dogs. She wanted to kill most other dogs. No one’s perfect.

When they gave me her ashes, I went right over to the Jonathan Adler store on Melrose and bought a PROZAC jar to keep them in.

That smushy-faced, roly-poly pup, who snored like a foghorn, was an anti-depressant in furball form.

That pup left her mark on a lot of people in her ten years. Above my desk I have a picture my friend’s four-year-old made when she told him Mags had died. It was the most awesome thing in the world. So was she.

 xo a.


3 thoughts on “death and taxes and puppy love

  1. Hollye Dexter

    What a precious piece of art – that portrait of Mags. And how precious she must have been. I am such a sucker for English bulldogs. I can never pass one on the street without stopping to fall in love.
    Sorry for the loss of you sweet Mags.
    thanks for helping us so much with our Stitch! I’m sure Mags would be proud.


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