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My Third L by Brittany Delaney

performed at Raise the Woof 2022

We met via social media

A typical 2020 relationship

I was locked in the house

Watching the paint dry on the 15th DIY

And you were the 17th storytime I read on my timeline: “How I found out my rescue was pregnant Part 1”

It was long

But I’ll summarize

They said your name was Whimper

That you cried more than any other puppy in the bunch so it seemed to be a fit

And as the 4th kid born to a bunch of 8

I could relate to it

So I scheduled to come see you but convinced myself that I would keep my options open

I googled “how do you know which puppy to pick?”

And after scanning over multiple opinion pieces I read something that hit me

It said “choose the one that chooses you”

I have never been chosen before

But I have dreamt of it so many times that I knew exactly what it would feel like

I knew intimately what it meant

Part two of the story mentioned something about you being an accident

And for the first time I actually believe it when they say that everything happens for a reason

In my home we believe that your name speaks for you so my first two L’s are Layla and Liam

Night and protector

Layla made darkness the most beautiful mosaic

A familiar place

Turned a fearless space

A star so bright it lit the walls of my voids

And Liam protected me from the places I need a shield to navigate

And we renamed you Legend

“History, story, myth”

My third L who would help me live something so beautiful the past me wouldn’t believe it could exist

We took you home

And for the first few weeks you tore up everything your little paws could kiss

First time I took you to the vet we talked about you having separation anxiety

Imagine being taken away from everything you knew

Second time we talked about how that fear manifest in your behaviors

Imagine how you show up when you are scared and don’t know what to do

I left that appointment unsure if I had bitten off more that I could chew

And then I remembered that you chose me and I chose you

And maybe we could find a few things, other than the furniture that you could chew

Like most things in the pandemic

I had no clue what was coming down the pipeline

So when lupus decided chemotherapy was next I worried what I would do and feared when I would see everyone I loved next

Separation anxiety

Imagine being taken away from everything that you knew


Imagine who you show up as when you don’t know what to do

But you had already walked that road

And done it with a leash

I was in good company

You chose me

I thought it was cute that you stayed attached to my hip until I realized you studied my behavior and knew when I would seize

You learned how to grab my medicine bag when I forgot what I was supposed to do