Promises and allies

Life is more hectic than ever, mostly in a positive way. The apartment in Teddington is now ours and we will be moving in mid-July. Can’t wait! It wasn’t the smoothest journey but the darkest cloud appeared on our usually clear blue sky just before exchange. As in, the day before. Can’t take Hendrix. Our solicitor fought tooth and nail and even argued with the Leasehold Advisory Board, but came up short and we had to decide to either back out or find a new home for our beloved little girl. Bloody Sophie’s Choice! B and I spent the next couple of days pretty much staring at each other in disbelief, both unable to decide one way or the other.

The worst part, for me anyway, was breaking my promise to this little pug lady I adore so much. I signed up to caring for her and ensuring she has the best life I could possibly give her, providing her with love, food, exercise, fun and anything she might need to keep her healthy. Hendrix had no say in this, only coming home with us in the hope I would honour my promise and she has filled me with joy every moment since, even when she takes a dump on the carpet. I feel – probably rightly so – that I’m letting her down. Second worst part was having to tell Monkey, made worse by the fact that he recently lost a dog at his dad’s.

Well. I always knew that I’d never let Hendrix go to a stranger, don’t care if the Queen turned up offering to let Hendrix join the gang of corgis. People could appear to be saints but I would have no idea what’d happen to her after she’d gone. And I’d have no way of protecting her. The only way I can at least partly keep my promise is by making sure I can guarantee her a new home where she’ll be as loved as she is at ours. It would have to be someone we know.

To keep Monkey’s heart from breaking, I first checked with my ex-husband but he and his partner can’t have another dog just now, they already have two and one is a puppy so adding our little mental case to the mix wouldn’t be feasible. The other, equally strange but equally sensible, choice…. B’s ex-wife. Big dog lover. B had brought up with his sons if they might know someone and they’d told their mum. B and his ex don’t speak, so I decided to contact her. However, she had beaten me to it. It feels strange saying this because things were so horrible during their divorce, but putting all of that aside and having met her in person, I have to reluctantly (at first, at least) concede she’s a really sweet woman.

And her message was just that – really sweet. Being a dog owner she expressed regret at the awful choice we would have to make and offered to take Hendrix, that she could promise Hendrix could have a great new home either with her or with her sister who already has a boy pug. Sometimes you really do find allies in the most unexpected places. And so that’s where we are at. Hendrix will in all likelyhood move further north and spend her days with a boyfriend called Boris.

Monkey, unsurprisingly, was very upset initially, but showed maturity way beyond his years in reasoning how Hendrix would be happy and therefore it’ll all be OK. I still can’t quite look at her silly little scrunched up face without feeling a sharp ache in my heart, but now that we at least know she’ll have a wonderful life perhaps I can feel less guilty. I’m still letting her down and I’m still breaking the promise I made – it won’t be me who provides her with her forever home – but I do think we’ve found the best solution possible in a situation that is crap on every level.

Now, what remains is planning everything else, and although having to give Hendrix up has made moving tinged with sadness, it will be wonderful to finally take that step and build for our future for real.

What doesn’t kill you and all that….


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