I think I took for granted the kind of love Duke had for me and the love I had for him.
His kind of love was pure, simple, genuine, trusting, forgiving, unconditional, and timeless. I don’t think humans can love other humans quite like that, as much as we like to think or hope we can.
He taught me what true, unadulterated love was. And while he was alive, though I loved him with all my might and appreciated his love as much as I could, I don’t think I ever took a real step back in order to see all its inner workings.
It was rare, and I think a love you can only share with an animal. We didn’t speak the same language, and there were many things we couldn’t communicate to each other on how we were feeling. But for some reason, our love was deeper and more meaningful than most of my human relationships. There was no malice, no manipulation, no pre-judgment, and no grudges. We both knew that our intentions were always genuinely pure towards each other, and we never held anything against the other because of it. We forgave easily, because we both knew that we could make mistakes, and that it was never intended to harm the other. He trusted us to take care of him and keep him safe, and we trusted him with the same.
I also want to make clear that when I mention love, I mean any kind of love you would like to think about as you read this. I thought about romantic, familial, and friend love altogether when I wrote this.
Duke taught me that when love is genuine and without ill will, it’s actually quite simple. He taught me that, majority of the time, all I really need is for someone to sit with me for a while without the pressures of having to say or do anything. And he taught me that I am enough, as I am, without filtering myself and without toning myself down.
He taught me what I want to define love as in my own life. And even though I have accepted that human love will never compare to the love I experienced with him, it should still be something that adds joy and calm to my life. It shouldn’t feel forced or overly complicated.
I think most of us have lost sight of this kind of love. And it is truly unfair to us as human beings that we are usually unable to look at things like this anymore. We are so fixated on what comes next - playing every possible good and bad scenario in our heads and sometimes sabotaging things that were never a present issue to begin with - that we are unable to see things as they truly are. And we don’t give ourselves the opportunity to check in and identify what it is we feel and want from and with the ones we love. Granted, and maybe even more to my point, a lot of this comes from the trauma we have experienced from past human interactions.
Maybe I’m being a little idealistic given how typically realistic or even pessimistic I am. But maybe it’s time I stop overthinking and overanalyzing and just see things as they are in the moment – much like our animals do.
Duke’s love was broken down to the unadorned and most amazing form. And I will never be able to thank him enough for teaching me of the simplicity of connection and love. But I can certainly try.
Thank you, my sweet angel baby – my Dukie Bear.
You held on for so much longer than I can ask for, and I’d like to think that I gave you as much love as I could with the time I had with your sweet and gentle-natured soul.
You can rest now. ❤️
Always tell someone how you feel because opportunities are lost in the blink of an eye but regret can last a lifetime. cricketwindies.com/forum/