All Dogs Go to Heaven

 Dogs. I love them. I love them more than people. I have two, well had two, as my wife and I have split up Homer and Hermes. When she abandoned our marriage over five months ago, she took both dogs with her. She offered to bring one back, of course, I advised her to keep both; as I had yet to realize where this fucking fiasco was going. As time passed, we agreed to split them up, and I now have Hermes. I have not seen Homer since he was taken on January 6th.
When I tell people this story, most react with: "Just get another dog." Clearly anyone who makes such an ignorant statement has never had a dog or pet. I don't want to simply replace him. I raised him and Hermes from when they were both puppies, along with my wife. They are my sons, and together with my wife, we were a family. So, no, I will not be replacing him. Unfortunately, dogs are considered property and there is no real right to shared custody in regard to a divorce. So, for the time being, I have to accept that I will most likely never see Homer again. That is painful and hard to swallow. 
I also feel bad for Hermes, as he lost his brother and his play mate. I know he looks for him around the house, as he does my wife, only to find empty rooms and silence. It's sad to see, but it is the reality going forward. I try to keep him busy as much as possible, taking him for walks, taking him up to NY with me when I travel, and spend as much free time with him that I can afford. We're best buds, braving this storm together. I'm happy to have him, because I need him right now as much as he needs me.
One last thing, people always ask what inspired their names. Homer is from the Greek author of "The Odyssey" and "The Iliad"...kidding, he's named after Homer Simpson. Although, Homer is quite intelligent, I just liked the name. Hermes origins are somewhat sadder. He was born to a litter of six pups, who were dumped on the side of the road in Georgia. He and his siblings were brought up to NJ to Puppies and More Rescue where my wife and I volunteered. We took in two pups, Maggie, she was brown and already spoken for; and Artemis, black, who I convinced my wife to adopt. Unfortunately, the entire litter came down with parvo, a disease that is caused due to the lack of nutrients provided by the mother.
Well, Maggie became ill, within two days of having her. During that time, I slept on the dining room floor with both of them because I did not want to leave them alone. She went to the vet and eventually passed. Our concerns grew for Artie, but had shown no signs until several days later. My wife took her one morning, I tearfully said goodbye and that I would see her again, and went to work.
We visited the remaining pups in quarantine, with IV's in their arms, all succumbing to parvo, except little Hermes, he was named Murphy at the time. He was up and his tail was wagging.
Artie passed a few days later along with the other pups. Hermes was the only survivor. We offered to take him and make the best we could from this horrible situation.
His name, like Homer and Artemis, has origins in Greek mythology. He is mainly considered as a god of transition and speed. But, he's also known as a Psychopomp or "guide of souls". So, he was there to help his siblings as they moved on from this world. So, yes, sad origins for a name, but good came from bad.
It's something I have to learn and accept about life. There is darkness and sadness, but born form both can be light and happiness, it just takes circumstance and time.

Homer and Hermes Bruno, my sons.

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