it hasn't even been a week since you left. cancer was eating away at you and we had to stop the pain somehow – you couldn't get up to greet us, you couldn't walk, you couldn't play. seeing you like that has broken my heart. letting you go wasn't nearly as hard as watching how the disease took your life away so quickly.
your daddy is devastated. i am heartbroken and hurting. you meant so much to us.... we were a big pet family but you were the core. without you, everything has shifted, everything is unrecognizable. the coming weeks and months, we just have to get used to this new life without you in it – and it all seems hollow and sad.
you were kind, patient, calm, gentle, sensitive – and silly, playful, goofy, a grinning fool, romping through snow like a puppy, even with your bad hips. i love dogs and i've known many but you were a milestone. there will always be a "before" and "after" for our time together.
i cry still, but i don't want to. i want to forget the cancer and the last few weeks when we struggled to keep you comfortable. i want to remember the other eleven-and-a-half years that were the best in our lives. your daddy and i took you on road trips, bought a house, got married, adopted other dogs to keep you company, we built a humble little life with you. navy, you were so loved.
if there is a dog heaven, i know what you're doing.
you're collecting toys and sticks, you're off-leash and romping hard, you're throwing your weight into my lap with a heavy sigh, you're staying up until 2 a.m. at one of our dinner parties, you're waiting outside the dollarstore for me to bring out a stuffy toy for you, you're pulling my glove off my hand so you could carry it home for me, you're grinning at me from across the room, you're asleep with your tongue out, you're falling behind on our hikes, you're looking at me when i'm babbling to you, eyebrows furrowed, wanting desperately to understand. i was only ever saying i love you.
and you're sitting at the door, waiting to see us again.