RIP Tessa, 3/26/2007
Tessa was such a sweetheart and loved everyone. I can't remember how many times somebody on the street stopped to meet her and would be getting their face licked by her and say 'Oh wow, she is so great! What kind of dog is she? I want one!" and we'd say "She's a Pit Bull,' and the response would be, "You're kidding! I've heard such bad things but she's so great." My little Pit Bull Ambassador to the world, setting the record straight on how sweet these furry babies are.
She lived in an apartment with us her whole life, and she was happy as a clam. She was Napoleon's partner in crime (our Rat Terrier) and mommy to Aella, who may be in a cat's body but Tessa was convinced Aella had come from hers.
I will never forget her happy grin with her tongue hanging out and the twinkle in her eye after a good round of tug, wrestling, or fetch.
She loved squeaky toys most of all. She'd keep working on a toy until she got the squeaky out and if we let her, she'd walk around squeaking it for days until the squeaker stopped working and only then would she leave it alone.
She was my security blanket. When my husband had to work evenings, or had late classes, I'd haul her into bed with me, she'd move ot the top to lay on his pillows and let me bury my face in her back. Their snores (hers and my husband) sounded so alike that when they both were snoring there were nights when I'd have to go sleep in the living room
I have post-traumatic stress syndrome and chronic depression and when my PTSD was acting up, she was always willing to come lay in my lap and I immediately felt safe. Sometimes she was able to provide more comfort to me just by laying with me than the company of a human being could ever do.
I chipped part of my right hip socket and at times it is extremely painful, but if I went and sat in the recliner and put my feet up, then had Tessa climb in and lay on my lap, for some reason her weight pressed my hip in just the right way so that it didn't hurt as badly. Between that and her kisses, it was Pit Bull Therapy at its finest!
My husband, JR, adored Tessa. She was his baby girl. He used to joke that we needed to air international videos of her putting up with his antics and everyone would know how tolerant pits are. He'd mush her skin forward so it was all wrinkled and say "Shar Pei!" an then let it fall back where it belonged and say "Pit Bull!" over and over and over and she's just wag her tail and lick him.
Dogs can giggle. At least Tessa could. She loved to roll around and wrestle with us and one day, my husband blew a raspberry on her belly as they were playing. She was so shocked! And then her face just lit up and while her giggles didn't make any sound, you could see her whole body was laughing. Even when she was feeling so poorly these last few weeks, you could always perk her up if you blew a raspberry. Of course, she'd try to blow one on you in her own doggie way by licking every part of you in reach.
I will miss that dog to my dying day just as I miss the other animals that have graced my life. The only thing that helps right now is to know that they are all together waiting for the day when I can join them for the never-ending romp and cuddle.