Affirmative Action | Teen Ink

Affirmative Action

January 12, 2010
By Anonymous

Running around the house, Meeko was always filled with life. His little paws slid across the wood floor eager to play. We normally caught him getting into trouble. His innocent face always got him out of everything. The big black eyes on his face were just irresistible. Meeko was my first dog, a black and white Japanese chin. He was short and covered in long fur that shed everywhere. His hair covered the floors of our house. He was already nine, and we had him his whole life and most of mine. It seemed like that dog would be around forever.

Ever since we were little, I drug him around the house. I was attached at the hip to that puppy. Meeko probably tried to hide from me, but I always found him. I felt like taking him everywhere, and I loved him with my life. He was probably the coolest thing I owned.
As time went on, he seemed to get sick. Coughing filled the rooms of our house. Echoes of the coughs bounced off the walls. I thought he just had a cold, but the coughs got louder and unbearable to hear. Weaker and weaker he seemed to get. What in the world was wrong with him? Meeko being this sick just messed with my mind. I just couldn’t believe he could be sick with anything serious. Meeko was healthy his whole life. Why would he get something life threatening now? I could tell he was suffering, but I just wanted him to be his happy self again, running anywhere he wanted to be. Too much time was being taken up for him to get better.
Soon enough, the coughing wouldn’t stop. Believing it was the right thing to do, he was taken to the vet. I honestly tried to convince my parents out of this. In my head, I just believed this would be over quick enough. But deep down in my heart, I was only afraid of the news I knew I would hear. The life shattering news that came out of the vet’s mouth turned our lives upside down; “Your dog has a heart murmur disease, and he probably only has about one month to live.” My heart sank when I found out. It felt as if the floor was being pulled out from underneath me. I couldn’t understand what would happen next and how much time I actually had. “Why him?” I thought to myself, “why not some other dog?”
The sadness made me think back to a sunny day when I was two or three. My mother and grandmother took me to the mall to have fun. Filled with curiosity, I was always so happy and perky. Hopping around the mall I saw the windows of the most magical store. “Mommy! Look!” I screamed.
The glistening windows of that pet store drew me in. I loved animals, and I wanted to play with them all. I ran as fast as my little legs could take me. Dogs, cats, bunnies, hamsters, fish, and so many animals were everywhere. This might as well have been heaven for me. The first window that attracted my attention held two tiny puppies. Black and white fur covered their little bodies. Their little noses were pressed against the glass. I just wanted to scoop them up and take them home.
“Mommy! I want a puppy!” I yelled.
“Taylor, not today,” replied my mom.
So I shouted and cried on the floor for about five minutes. The tears in my eyes slid down my cheeks. I wanted that puppy, and I wanted it now. The other customers in the store gave us dirty looks as I threw my fit. I may have been kind of bratty, but I knew I needed one of those puppies. I honestly thought life gave you everything you wanted when you wanted it. Eventually, it all paid off because my mom, the most embarrassed mother in that mall, decided to buy me that puppy. She just wanted go home and leave that mall. Happiness filled my heart. I pulled him into my arms and I knew he was special. So we bought one and took him home. Filled with joy, he ran all over our apartment. Never have I seen anything with that much energy. He was extremely hyper and I loved it. He got the name Meeko from a raccoon from Pocahontas, a movie I loved. Some days I wish I could go back to that day and cherish my first time seeing him. Time is precious, and shouldn’t be wasted.
After being diagnosed with his heart disease, the next few months he got worse and worse. He got skinnier and skinnier. His ribs and his spine poked out of his tiny frame. Deep down, I could tell the suffering was getting unbearable for even him. What was the cost to end the suffering? We all knew the answer, but I just couldn’t let my heart let go of him just yet. I needed more time, I wasn’t ready for this big of change in my life, letting go of something so special. But, his time was coming, and we needed to do something soon.
So six months later, which was way past the month long due date the vet gave us, we took him to get put to sleep. He started being sicker than ever, and we wanted his suffering to end. I couldn’t believe his time was actually now. I never thought it would come flying by. Devastation filled my house. He was loved by all of us so much. But, Meeko did live longer than we expected him to, and we were thankful for the extra time we had with him. He was a fighter. Through all the pain and suffering, Meeko hung on for life and didn’t give up. Life is short, life is fleeting, but it is special. Living is the most amazing gift we could receive, and we must make the best of it. Looking back on Meeko, these thoughts will always be with me. I miss and love him, but his little paws still run around in my heart.

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