All prior losses pale in comparison to this one: Saying goodbye to a friend I have had for the past six years. My dog.
She entered my life in June 2009, a beautiful, blonde head turner. She stayed with me all the time, always there, truly a sight for sore eyes. She never questioned my love, though sometimes she demanded more. There was always more to give to her.
She made the greatest of impressions on me and on others who crossed paths with her. She was rescued as a stray. When I met her, all I could think, over and over, was “Who in their right mind would ______ (lose, give up, let go of?) this dog?”
But as they say, their loss (whoever lost, gave up, let go of) is my gain. And I did GAIN thirty five pounds of biscuit-colored love. (The name her rescuer had given her before I changed it was, in fact, “Love.”)
There was so much to love beyond her beauty. Her unique personality.
Her gait: alert and lively, her tail curled behind in a fan of white fur.
Her ladylike manners, her leaps over puddles on rainy days. Her quick and lively trot, hard to keep up with during walks!
Her many surprises, expressions one might think unusual on the face of a dog, her expressive gaze, the reflection she mirrored back.
In her presence (and outside of it), my heart swelled with warmth greater than I knew it could bear. I would have walked in front of a moving car to save her. Yet, when it came time to stop the suffering that came eventually from the inevitable neurological decline that plagued her, there was only one right choice, and that was to let her go off into the Great Beyond.
“The greatest thing you’ll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return”
Goodbye friend. There will never be another you.
If there’s a dog heaven, you are illuminating it with your smile right now.
“Each friend represents a world in us, a world not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.”
– Anais Nin