Two Good Friends – Chiweenie Tucker and His Guardian Angel, Lily

When my own child, Hannah, was itty bitty, before she could even talk or walk, her favorite book in the whole world was named that: Two Good Friends. It was a little hardcover book with simple illustrations of two animals, a bear and a duck, who became devoted friends. There was not much to it. They just did simple little things for each other on each page, with minimal words and gestures.

We read that book a thousand times, and for sentimental reasons I wish I knew where it was now. I see on Amazon that an original of this 1974 publication now sells for up to $60!

Anyway, the point is, there is just something about true friendship that can’t be bought, beat, mimicked or made up for. It doesn’t have to be dramatic or full of particular flare, and great feats and big gifts are not required to prove its sincerity. That kind of devotion touches all hearts when witnessed, as its simple representation obviously did for my precious daughter all those years ago.

My cat Lily (short for Liliputian because

Lily keeping Tucker clean

she was so tiny when I found her) has taken it upon herself to be a good friend to all of my five dogs. But her purpose in life, her raison d’etre,  is to be the absolute best friend, ever, of my Chiweenie, Tucker. And to keep watch over him and make sure he stays clean.

When I asked Lily about why she had instantly adopted Tucker as her own when I brought him home a year and a half ago, she let me know that she had immediately recognized a kindred spirit in him, and the fact that he, like she, was a rescue off the streets, sorely undernourished, scared and depressed, hit her in the heart. Plus, he was just her size — the opposite of her other canine housemates, who were all huge and hairy. Not wanting to seem shallow, she continued that that part didn’t matter so much though; it was the heart connection that counted.

Lily and Tucker, just hangin' out together.

Whatever creates these unusually loyal attachments and devotions, I don’t know. But I do know we all recognize them when we see them and are lit up by them. They open our hearts, are unknowable, and put us in awe of our truly miraculous universe and its workings. I mean, how does one small cat who came off the streets five years ago instantly recognize the needs of one small, insecure dog coming from a similar fate? How do a duck and a bear make friends?

My baby daughter obviously knew. She recognized something, somewhere deep in her essence, in that little book — something that she’s never lost. She still to this day has friendships from all phases of her lifetime that will never die.

If you have only one friend, that makes two of you. Two good friends. Give great thanks, for you are truly blessed. And if you can find it, go buy that book for your child or for a friend’s child. It will instill something in his or her little baby heart that will last a lifetime.

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