Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Unconditional Love of a Pet by Diane K. Hewitt

"Lil' Miss Peaches" by Diane K. Hewitt
11x14" Oil on Canvas
Artist's Private Collection

I’ve been recuperating from bronchitis for approximately 3 weeks now.  Feeling low always brings me back to the intense love of my family. 
Today, I’m particularly focused on the love and compassion of my Yorkies.  It all began when my daughter graduated from college, and her only wish was for a small Yorkshire Terrier.  She searched the internet for weeks, and found the perfect match for her personality in Mississippi.  Since we live in Georgia, and she went to college in Tennessee,    I drove and picked her up on the way following her graduation. 
The Mississippi kennel was lovely, as were the owners.  Many people would love to be treated as well as these 4-legged babies had been treated.  There was a TV, and the “kids” each had a room of their own with canopy beds, and a puppy-door to the outside (with a ramp) that accessed an adorable play yard full of Little Tyke equipment,  and even a  very low porch swing in which to lay and swing.  Before we could leave I simply could not help myself, and fell in love with a little one that was jumping constantly on the half-door to her living area as though she had a trampoline beneath her tiny feet.  It turned out that Peaches, already named by a couple who changed their minds.  I caved, and we drove home with two Yorkies.  
We already had a large Cavalier King Charles Spaniel at home that we thought was mixed with a Cocker Spaniel, but he welcomed these little girls into his world with gentle patience and love. My husband was not quite as happy, but these tiny girls won over his heart in no time with their constant kisses, silly antics, and happy demeanors. In time, my daughter moved out with her little one, Mia, for whom she created a website, www.mylittlemia.com, and another Yorkie that she adopted named Emmy.
In my empty nest, I started a fine gift and home accessories store, into which I poured the “mommy energy” that I had once spent on my daughter. The online store was great, but after 2 years I decided to open a bricks and mortar store, which started the store’s demise. That’s a story for another day. Anyway, we sold the store to a liquidation company and, as I drove the long drive home after dark on my last day at the store, I was exhausted. When I drove into my garage I heard a ‘thump’. It was my Lil’ Peaches under my wheel. She had followed my husband into the garage to toss the trash, and he didn’t realize it. It was horrifying! Shortly thereafter, I started taking painting classes, and decided to paint the above piece representing our beloved little 4-legged girl.
We faced another tragedy in our family in November of 2008, when Piper, our Cavie, passed away due to a heart problem. Then again, when my daughter's little Mia lost her battle with lung disease in November of last year.
Life continues through the intense pain of loss, be it a parent, a child, or a pet. A friend put it best when he said, “We never get over them, but we learn to go on without them.”

Three months after Lil’ Miss Peaches passed, we went back to the same breeder and got two more precious little Yorkies, Picabou and Paddicake. They have been our salvation, along with my daughters new Cavie, Pippa. They are all the best of friends, and my constant companions. I can’t imagine life without them. They play as I paint, travel with us to the beach, to the mountains….wherever. And when I’m feeling low….well, they have the best kisses in the world, aside from my husband, siblings, daughters, and grands!

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