I said something I consider hurtful about Stormy in a recent post. I said if I had known what I was getting into with her, I might have run away. And you know what? I don’t think that’s true. You see, I did know exactly what I was getting into. The first morning I spent the night on good ole Oak Street in SF, I woke up in the morning to find Stormy staring intently (I thought murderously at the time) at me with her head cocked to the side. She was watching me sleep! Then during the first few months I lived there, she manged to destroy my favorite pair of shoes and eat an egg sandwich breakfast I had gotten out in the Inner Sunset and had been salivating about for the 15 minutes it took to get home. She also embarrassed me in public on a regular basis by snapping at little dogs on leashes on Haight Street. Once she got mad at me and bit a hole in a pillow. We fought endlessly over prime couch real estate.
I tried once to run away from all of it – intense love, change, growing up. I realized my mistake three weeks later and tried to come back. It took me two years to get there, but I did. She welcomed me back the first night I came back after two long years apart. She did this by lying next to me and having our legs lightly touch. It was subtle but it meant the world.
She was jealous of me. And I was so jealous of her. It was hard to get used to sharing our guy. In all fairness, she had him first. I never liked her. I admit it here. However, I fiercely loved her.
Stormy, nothing you’ve done lately, nothing you could ever do…erases everything you are and everything you have been. Every homeless junkie on the street whose dull eyes brightened when they saw you. Every European tourist out west whose America road trip pictures featured your goofy antics, like sitting on park benches and hugging and kissing your owner. Every “I love you” you barked to him. Every howling session you engaged in with him. Every smile you put on his face. The dark, stormy times you pulled him through. Every door you closed all by yourself.
I’m watching you fading from this world and I can’t bring you back this time. Last time you came right back to us when we called. This time, you’re too far away. Just know you’ll never disappear. You are vividly etched into the memories of every Haight Street regular and every friend and family member who ever knew you. You are difficult and wonderful and wild.
I forgive you.