I graduated college in 2007. THIRTEEN freaking years ago. (I’m not sure how this is all scientifically possible as I couldn’t possibly be older than 25…ish). College certainly feels like a lifetime ago, and yet simultaneously feels like no time has passed at all.
But passed, it has. So much LIFE has happened in those thirteen years – for me, and for all of my age mates. We’ve completed graduate degrees, and doctorates. We’ve fallen in love, we’ve gotten married. There have been divorces. There have been parents and grandparents passing away. There have been babies. Good lord, have there been babies!
As much as people gripe about the woes of social media, I’ve certainly LOVED the benefit of “following along” as the kids I grew up with raise up kids of their own. I love seeing families grow and unite and continue to grow. It’s a beautiful thing and I love I can still feel incredibly connected with people I haven’t physically seen in well over a decade.
Lately though, every time I log into Facebook and/or Instagram, I notice a trend in the posts I see. And…its not exactly rainbows and butterflies.
Many of my friends and acquaintances got themselves a pet shortly after finishing college. Having your own dog, in your own apartment, with your own job felt like a major stepping stone in the process of growing up. The dogs (and cats) have been there with us through it all. They’ve seen the heartbreaks, and the new apartments, and the graduate degrees. They’ve been our companions through marriages and pregnancies.
But, as all dog owners know, the most unfair part of that unconditional partnership between man and dog is that dogs can only live for a decade or so. Nearly every single day that I log onto my Facebook account, I see a friend’s touching tribute to their deceased pet. Its heartbreaking and heart wrenching and yet, somehow beautiful too.
Our family’s dogs, Winchester and Chase, are 8 and 9 years old and are (thankfully) still thriving. It doesn’t slip past me though that our dogs lives are so brief. Each time I see a tribute to someone’s pup, I try to make sure to squeeze my little doggos a bit tighter and soak in every moment with them. Even when they vomit on my new living room carpet. No matter how short (or hopefully long) their lives are, they will always hold a place in my heart as my first two “kids”.