For our beloved Nox

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Falling in love with Nox

Feb. 23, 2015

“If I get a dog – I say we throw a puppy shower. Will you be his/her god parent?”

The messages that followed were full of heart-eyes emojis and all caps conversations. This was the first time you were seriously looking into dogs. Of course you’d been thinking about it for a long time, but daydreaming about pup cuddles and searching for your companion are two different stages. You were ready. At first it was mostly Aussies because of your love for your own back home. But none of them were quite the right fit. So was declared, “let the pup hunt begin!”

Feb. 24, 2015

You found her: “Princess”

We got really excited about her…so much so that Wendy said “calm yourselves ppl” to which you replied “NEVARRRRR” – I’d expect nothing less.

You made Wendy and I your references – I have never been so honored. I’ve always appreciated you opening up to us and trusting our judgement, just as we do to you. I’m so thankful to have known you and been a part of this process.

And then….even though I suggested “no rushing”…the name suggestions came piling in, because I think we knew that she was the one you’d been searching for. Your first suggestions were: Ebony, Margo, Stormy and Nymeria – “All book references I see,” said I “to be expected of course.”

And then you found it… Nox

(She always was a bit of a princess, but thank the gods you changed her name)

And right after a little bit of oo-ing and ahh-ing, you sent us this: “AHHH SHE JUST ASKED IF I WANTED TO BE PRINCESS’S FOREVER HOME.”

The GroupMe exploded. My phone died and I even forced Wendy to type my messages. We talked more seriously – about the benefits of a border collie mix, questions about Isabelle, and you getting the chance to meet her because you were going home that weekend.

“Holy shit I may have a dog o.o” soon followed by “PUPPY PARTY!”


Feb. 26, 2015

It was happening…you started making plans for a potential, but probable puppy party. You were planning on meeting her and possibly picking her up the next weekend. We were so excited to hear from you.

March 1, 2015

It was for real now. You had found your girl, your Nox.


March 4, 2015

Today is the day that I got to meet Nox. I remember I was walking across campus toward Lowder Hall, and I saw this girl that kind of looked like you, with a black dog. I thought, is that Avenley? So super awkwardly I called across the concourse, trying not to be *that girl* screaming someone’s name in public. You were talking to some random guy, someone I didn’t recognize, and I could tell you were confused. But then you heard me – it was you! So I got to meet your Nox. She was so cuddly and so automatically loving. She had those puppydog eyes that made you melt upon first glance. The guy you were talking to turned out to be Wes’s doppelganger, because I saw him 10 minutes later in Starbucks – just a funny memory and weird coincidence we both shared that day.

March 8, 2015

Today was one of my favorite days all semester. We finally got to have our puppy party. You made plans for us to come over to your apartment. You bribed us with snacks, booze and puppy cuddles. And it turned out even better. I remember we were all sitting around your coffee table, when we decided that it was too beautiful a day to be spent indoors. So we all hopped in my car and drove to the playground behind Logan Square apartments. We walked onto the baseball/kickball field, with nothing but a tennis ball and sunshine as a plan. Nox was never the best at fetch, but she loved running around. We kicked and threw that tennis ball around for a long time, laughing because we were more satisfied with the ball than your new pup. Overall, it was a great day. I asked some random group of cheerleaders to take our picture – and it’s one of my favorites. Our first family photo. My caption was “Spent this perfect afternoon with some of my favorite people,” and Paul C. was nice enough to label Nox as “doge.”


A beautiful adventure

The next several months Nox wiggled herself into the hearts of everyone she met. I remember being fascinated with her diabetic alert dog training – and SO PROUD of the both of you for completing her training. I remember once I was going to let her out and feed her while you were at work – you texted me telling me to pull a bag of frozen peas out of the freezer and set them out on the counter before I let her out – to trick her and prove that she won’t always do scent training.


I loved the way she would prance around while she was working – so proud to show off her vest. And she was always so well behaved in public. I loved taking her with us – to dinner at the Hound with your parents, to Party City to hunt for Halloween decorations (even though that little asian kid cried), to McAlister’s when you came to see me – she was a highlight.

Remember that time I was dog sitting and she had a separation crisis? That was an interesting weekend. “Uhhh Avenley, Nox destroyed her kennel…and lashed out at your books…I’m so sorry.” Little shit. She and I spent even more time together after that. She and Dinah fought over cuddling space in the bed, and we took a trip to Columbus together for a new kennel lol.

It made me so happy that she loved her toys so much. I remember buying her the dinosaur: Wendy and I were at Target, and I wanted to get her a welcoming present – it was perfect. And then after the separation crisis I fell in love with that banana toy. It used to be adorable, and lasted about two days before she chewed off the face lol. Then mean old aunt Tori took away all the stuffing and the squeaker, leaving her with the skin of a banana toy – she still loved it, though. And she always found Dinah’s toys, but just wanted to lick the feathers.


I loved when we were at the lake house, and we convinced her to jump in the water after you. I will always remember the two of you lying on the tube together, basking in the sunlight, letting life’s worries fade away in our quiet oasis. We took a boat ride and I wrapped her in a towel – she curled up so small next to me.

You and I got a kick out of her playing with Dinah this past weekend. She was so adorable – hopping in circles around my cat, giving her kisses on the head and barking at her to play. Dinah just rolls over – so apathetic and not amused. Nox was always such a quirky little pup. I was not her “mom,” but I loved how excited she was to see me. You even let me help you pick out her leash. The “woodlands” color was our favorite – thank you for always including me in your colorful life and this puppy adventure.

She loved to jump and give you kisses. She loved to wreak havoc with Timber, possibly just to upset Ellie. She had the cutest grumpy growl when she wasn’t getting enough attention. And she always knew who fell in the well, even if she didn’t tell us in that moment. There was so much personality inside her little, nimble body. I don’t think I EVER saw her in a “normal” position – always flopping and falling over. I seriously don’t believe she could’ve stayed on the couch by herself.

Jan. 7, 2016

Words from Avenley:

I lost her today. She was an amazing dog. I wasn’t a dog person until I found her. I talked about nothing else. She was my best friend. She was the top in her class and was so sweet. She just wanted to snuggle and kiss you. She had an amazing, but short life. She got sick suddenly and she fought hard to stay with me. She came back from the dead four times. The vets said they had never seen any dog fight that hard and come back that many times. She was so loyal and curious and a little shit. She was so loving and everyone who saw her fell in love with her. She stole so many hearts. I am so blessed to have had this little infinity with her. I can’t imagine my life without her. She deserved many more years.

Sometimes the universe really has a way of testing us. My heart aches for you and for her. I am thankful for all the times you brought her over to cuddle, for trusting me to watch her – even though she destroyed her kennel once, for getting to watch the two of you fall in love with each other, for the funny stories I always got to hear, for the million snapchats of awkward positions and smiling eyes, for the security she brought you with living with diabetes, for the companion she became and the family member we all found in her.

Thank you for making her a part of my life as much as she was a part of yours. She will be terribly missed, but never forgotten.


Nox could not have been a better name for her. For anyone who doesn’t know, Nox is from the universe of Harry Potter – the wand extinguishing charm – a spell causing the light at the end of the caster’s wand to be extinguished – the counter charm for Lumos.

In actuality, she brought so much light to our lives. She illuminated our hearts and brought smiles to everyone who met her. May you have cats to chase in your new life. May the water bowls be ever-filling, and may the other dogs laugh at how messy of a water drinker you are. May there be fuzzy blankets. May you always remember how much we all loved you, and how forever changed we are. And may you watch over Avenley. She’ll continue to need your guidance and your jumping kisses. We’ll do the best we can from here, but you will be forever in her heart – closer and more intimate. Thank you for what you meant to my best friend.

So as we say goodbye, I know no better way than with her own name.

I will miss your light.



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