Farewell to the Queen

by Shari on December 24, 2012

Chandelier Jackson Cabelin, 2002-2012

“The pug is living proof that God has a sense of humor.” Margo Kaufman

Oh, Chandy, my girl.

I miss you so.

Ten years ago you were my very special gift from Daddy. I had been begging and begging for a dog and he was on the fence about it. Until we were eating in that restaurant with our friends and a chandelier fell out of the ceiling on my head. As they put me on the stretcher to take me to the ER and Daddy was crying over my bloodied noggin, Uncle John leaned over and whispered to me, “Now’s the time to ask for anything.

And so I did. And so you came.

Being that you were a pug and pugs were bred to sit in the laps of royalty, you probably would have ruled our home regardless. But it didn’t help that I had recently suffered a miscarriage and the fertility experts told me that I probably wouldn’t be able to have children. It was clear that since you were to be my only baby, you should be afforded all the clothing, gifting, and doting that any besotted mother would bestow on her offspring. All of which you accepted as your due.

It was around then that you developed your voice.

Your facial expressions were so unmistakable and your intentions so clear, that the voice I gave you genuinely seemed to spring from the depths of your soul.

“I may be wrong, but I’m fairly certain that bowl in the background is empty and judging by the ticking clock, it should be full. But then, what do I know? I’m only a starving, mistreated heir to the throne.”

You began to have long dialogues with Daddy about philosophy, religion, the meaning of life, and your own talents and spectacular physical beauty. To his credit, he never once said that you talked too much. And he always agreed with you about your loveliness.

“Eat your heart out, Norma Jean Baker.”

When the skin-children came along, you were shocked and dismayed, giving me long, reproachful looks from the lowly dog bed to which you had been banished. It was so clear that you were vying to preserve your status, that one day I couldn’t resist making your voice ask “Daddy, if it were 1940 and the Nazis were in power and you had to make a Sophie’s Choice between me and the human baby, who would you keep?”

And when the other pug came along, you were just plain old pissed off.

“All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth to bite through that thing’s jugular.”

You spent the rest of your life curling your dog lip at poor hapless Schilling, who always looked a little confused that you didn’t adore him like the rest of the world did. And when he tried to charm you by incessant humping, I swear you actually rolled your eyes and sighed dramatically.

“So he’s Zorro and I get to be the damsel in distress. There is no justice.”

You finally gave in and accepted your lot and our family became a mighty sixsome, three males and three females, all even and balanced and symmetrical. And happy. So happy.

But now, everything’s thrown off.

Because you’re gone and there is a huge hole where your outsized presence once was. You were my friend and my baby when I grieved the loss of a pregnancy and when I mourned for the children they told me I wouldn’t have. And even when I was blessed with human and pug abundance, you were my first-born and you knew it; you conveyed your specialness and possessiveness in every cuddle, snuffle, snore and lick. You were the first being that ever belonged just to me and you were so proud and confident that I belonged to you. I am heartsick at your loss.

We buried you with your favorite outfit, your “Men in Black” suit and tie, crying and laughing, and we asked ourselves, why didn’t we clone you like you once requested? There will never be another like you.

Farewell, sweet friend. Farewell, Queen Chandelier.

Your mama misses you.

{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

James Christian Jr December 24, 2012 at 5:09 am

Shari,
My heart goes out to you and Carlito. I am sitting here crying. I won’t see her anymore and I was not ready for my sorrow about this.

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 3:48 pm

I know, James. She loved her Uncle so much and always was particularly excited when you came to visit.

Reply

Melanie December 24, 2012 at 5:29 am

Your Auntie Mel misses you too. I know I always said Schilling was my favorite but you know you were always my special pug friend. It was worth going to the ER because of you. You filled my visits with you with such light and laughter. Will miss you, your royalness and will remember and love you always.

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 3:49 pm

I’ll never forget how you got off that flight and came straight to my house to take care of her, Mel. xxoo

Reply

Katbron December 24, 2012 at 5:34 am

Chandy was so lucky to have a mommy and daddy that loved her so! I mourn your loss. Pug hugs and love.

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 3:49 pm

Thanks for understanding, pug friend Kathy.

Reply

kathryn stamas December 24, 2012 at 2:08 pm

Beautiful and funny. I love you Shari!

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 3:49 pm

Love you back, Auntie Kathy.

Reply

Lakiya December 24, 2012 at 2:22 pm

Queen, indeed!

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 3:50 pm

You know it, Kiya.

Reply

Darrin December 24, 2012 at 2:47 pm

I think many of us know the pain of mourning a death of a pet and the first one is always the hardest. I have also felt this pain! When I asked for my first pet I did not have the leverage you had, as such I received a Guinea Pig! (Name flash, he was pretty fast). I had that pig for 6 years. At year two it survive tumor surgery (yes I know it is a Guinea Pig, but it was mine). It lived 4 more long cage cleaning years. During those 4 years I discovered that the more you feed it, the more it poops, and the more cage cleaning there is to be done. At year 6 I was off to college and my parents were going to have to clean his cage, the people rejoiced. (They don’t allow Guinea Pigs in college dorms). But this poor Guinea Pig could not go on without me and died the day before I went to college. I also buried my first pet, not in his favorite outfit but with a few unkind words that he did not make my parents at least clean his cage once!!!!

Not matter what it is always hard to say good-bye to a really good friend….I feel your pain!

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 3:52 pm

I swear they know, Darrin, and they know they can’t live without you. We were walking out the door to take Chandy to the vet (a vet we can’t stand, but was the closest one) and she died in Carlito’s arms. She always said she wanted to be buried in the back yard and so she was. xo

Reply

Anna Lefler December 24, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Oh, no! I’m so very sorry, Shari – and all of you. Words always fall short, especially where furry-love is concerned, so I will just say that I’m sending love and hugs your way and that Chandy could not have had a better life here or more loving family. (She knows that.)

Much love to you all,

Anna

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 3:52 pm

Love you, Anna.

Reply

Stacy December 24, 2012 at 3:13 pm

Shari – I am so sorry to hear this about your beloved pug. She seemed to have a huge beautiful personality just like her mama. Thinking of you. Was nice to see you at Wallace the other day.
Love, Stacy (mom to Maya/Thomas from trial hip/hop class)

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 3:53 pm

Thanks so much, Stacy, so appreciate your comment. See you in 2013 and will hug you then. :-)

Reply

James Christian Jr December 24, 2012 at 3:51 pm

He y Shar!
God blessed us with our lovely Chandelier because we needed her for our pain. I remember the sorrow you and Carlito dealt when your misscarriage happened.
She was a character!!! But she was also about Love for us in the end. That is what made her our love! Yeah, she had issues!! But she made sure she supported us after all. She was a strong lady in the end.
Let’s see her for her heart!
I’m still crying but…. I know she’s good now!
- James Christian Jr

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 3:54 pm

Yep, she is, James. We kept making a joke that she would get to Heaven and make the apostles move down a throne so that she would be in her rightful place, right next to Jesus. I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if that’s where she really was. Love you.

Reply

Ann December 24, 2012 at 4:22 pm

Until we were eating in that restaurant with our friends and a chandelier fell out of the ceiling on my head.

WHAT?

And also, this was the most loving funny and heart-swell-y dog tribute I’ve ever read.

Sending hugs to you. Rest now dear Chandy (but keep talking through Shari, just to freak everyone out).

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 5:00 pm

oh, yeah, I should tell you that whole story some time, Ann. :-) And Chandy is still talking, much to the delight of my children. Love you.

Reply

Lady Jennie December 24, 2012 at 4:29 pm

Tears in my eyes and I don’t even LIKE dogs!

Oh wait … what was I saying?

I’ll miss her nipping my ankles as I try to get past the child gate with the bungee cord tie just fast enough so that she cannot get me.

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 5:00 pm

ha ha ha!! yes, I had forgotten that you experienced the best of Chandy.

Reply

Alexandra December 24, 2012 at 4:42 pm

Oh, SHARI!!!!

I am so sorry, I remember meeting Chandy, the first blog post of yours i ever read.

Oh, Shari, please, feel me hugging you for as long as you want me to.

xo

Reply

Shari December 24, 2012 at 5:01 pm

Thank you, dear Empress. I do feel the hugs. I wish you could have met her in the fur, you would have laughed for the rest of your life.

Reply

Shannon December 24, 2012 at 10:53 pm

I’m so sorry for the loss of your sweet Chandy. I have loved and lost several dogs and I know it is not easy. Love to you and your family, and I hope Schilling is doing okay, too.

Reply

Shari December 25, 2012 at 12:14 am

Thank you, Shannon, greatly appreciate your compassion with this. Schilling is seriously bummed out. :-(

Reply

hilljean December 26, 2012 at 4:18 am

I am so sorry :( She sounds like an absolute gift from God and the perfect addition to your family. It is so hard to lose a remarkable pet. I’ve been there :(

Reply

dusty earth mother December 26, 2012 at 4:28 am

Thank you; she absolutely was a gift from God. Perfect choice of words.

Reply

kimberly/tippytoes December 26, 2012 at 4:40 am

Oh no. It sounds like she was equally lucky to have you. We have a 12 year old pug who doesn’t seem to be doing well this week, and I’ve been wondering if the end is near.

Reply

dusty earth mother December 26, 2012 at 5:09 am

Oh, it just makes me sad hearing that–I pray that she bounces back, poor baby.

Reply

Kablooey December 26, 2012 at 6:49 am

I’m so sorry about your dear Chandy. You have all my sympathy; I hope your family is ok. I know how tough this is…

Reply

dusty earth mother December 26, 2012 at 2:29 pm

Thanks, my friend. We were inundated with pug gifts for Christmas, and the humor of it all lightened our hearts. Pugopoly, anyone?

Reply

MH December 27, 2012 at 7:18 pm

Oh my heart breaks with yours. I lost my pug a few months ago. They are such a gift from God. Chandy will always be with you, and I’m sure she is sending healing pug energy to mend your heart.

Reply

dusty earth mother December 27, 2012 at 9:32 pm

“Healing pug energy”–how much do I love that phrase? Thank you so much.

Reply

Lauren December 28, 2012 at 3:50 am

I have love and respect for all creatures, even cats surprisingly, with my allergies. But Chandy was indeed my first pug that didn’t belong to me but belongs to Share Bear, who I adore. I know Chandy is sending light and love ahead to you Shari, as she did when she was with you. Gonna miss that face, Loved me some Chandy,

Reply

dusty earth mother December 28, 2012 at 3:11 pm

I know you did, Lauren. Our parties just won’t be the same without her waiting for food under the table with her eyes bugging out. *sob*

Reply

MAMA ROSE December 29, 2012 at 9:34 pm

I KNOW I’M A LITTLE LATE FOR THE MEMORIAL BUT I HAD TO SAY A LITTLE PRAYER FOR MY GIRL CHANDY. EVEN THO SHE POOED ON MY WHITE RUG AT THANKSGIVING.
“TO MY CHANDY. REMEMBER ME – GRAMMA WITH THE ORANGE HAIR?? GRAMMA WILL ALWAYS REMEMBER YOU – I HAVE THE STAIN ON MY RUG TO HELP ME. YOU REALLY LOVED ME HONEY AND GRAMMA WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU BACK. SO REST EASY MY SWEET GIRL – GIVE GOD A KISS FOR ALL OF US. FROM GRAMMA WITH THE ORANGE HAIR”

Reply

dusty earth mother December 30, 2012 at 2:28 pm

I loved that prayer, Grandma with the orange hair.

Reply

the mama bird diaries December 30, 2012 at 5:28 am

I’m so sorry for your loss Shari. xo xo

Reply

dusty earth mother December 30, 2012 at 2:28 pm

Thanks, Kelcey. xxoo

Reply

Sharona Zee January 11, 2013 at 4:34 am

my heart is broken for you! I still mourn the sainted Holly Dalai (boston terrier #1). Crazy Daisy (BT #2) did not replace her in my heart, but she does her snoring, farting, snuffling, ball-for-brain best.

Queen Chandelier definitely seems to be be one of a kind, irreplaceable!
Take care!

Reply

Kizz March 12, 2013 at 6:55 pm

My girl died in 2009 and I still miss the heck out of her every day. She wasn’t perfect but she was perfect for me and the world is all wrong without her. I’m so sorry your girl had to go.

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: