Posted Sun, 12/23/07
Despite my recent inability to focus, I have been trying to recompense Rainee for months of neglect. I don't mean neglect in the sense of physical abuse or of not feeding or caring for her, but rather a close personal attention that was otherwise taken by Foofer during his illness and my obsessive fear that I would miss one second of his life.
Rainee knew where my attention was centered from the start, and every day I felt guilty about it. She is such a sweet, clever and physically beautiful girl who is also surprisingly intuitive. She misses Foofer, too, which was inevitable because they were the best of buddies, joined at the hip as it were. In my own grief I have failed to recognize that fact as I should have. Rainee seemed to accept the situation in a resigned way – as if she had no other choice, which I suppose she didn't – although now I would like to make it up to her if she'll let me.
During his illness, I took Foofer for a ride very day whether I had anywhere to go or not. I always left Rainee behind because she became too excited and often plowed into Foofer and his poor, swollen belly in clumsy fashion. She finally grew accustomed to being left behind, her excitement gradually fading with each rebuff and the expectant light leaving her eyes. That in itself was terribly sad to witness, but there was nothing I could do about it at the time.
Yesterday I bundled Rainee in her red sweater and took her for a ride to the grocery store. She was visibly thrilled, reminding me of a child who had finally hit the "big time" and was eager to make a show of it to the world. It was as if she couldn't believe she was finally getting a ride in the car, couldn't fathom that she was actually sitting in the front seat and able to see the entire unfolding landscape with her own eyes.
In that sparkling moment, I saw some of the light return to her eyes, and some of the enthusiasm reassembling itself – however tentatively. I'm sure she doesn't trust me fully yet, but knowing that she will let me earn her affection again is a small step in the right direction and gives me a spark of hope for "motherly" redemption in her eyes.