I've written this letter over and over, and I just can't get it to express exactly what I'm feeling. There's so much I want to say to you, but I just don't know where to begin.
Do you remember how right after Mena died, I whispered to you that you should let me know if you were ever in pain like Mena was and needed to leave us?
I was lying.
Okay, I didn't want you living in pain, but I never imagined you'd leave so soon. But a couple of days later you began having eye problems. I found out that you had an inoperable tumor only one week after Mena died. And exactly two weeks after Mena died in my lap, it was again time for me to hold one of my best friends as he died. That's two of my best friends gone in as many weeks.
It was a little easier for me to accept with Mena, partially because it all happened so fast, and partially because I could tell she was getting very uncomfortable. With you it was difficult to follow through with our decision once the painkillers started to work - you were your puppy self again. I know it would have been selfish to make you live with the pain for any longer, but I still hope that you can forgive me for making such a terrible choice.
As difficult as it was losing a "healthy" dog, at least you were able to spend your final days having fun. I am eternally grateful to have those last few days full of wonderful memories with you. Going on our superwalk together, playing catch, watching you destroy your ropey ball toy...I cherish every single moment. And there could be no better memory than your big sloppy tongue after a walk, or how you got so wiggly when I looked at your tennis ball.
I definitely expected to miss those types of big things. But I never realized how much I counted on the little things that you (and Mena) did. The house is now so quiet, especially at night. It feels empty without your breathing, without your tail thumping, without your digging little "nests" on the rug downstairs. Even without your licking your hands and arms. As much as that annoyed me at times, I'd give anything to hear you do it again.
There are so many things I can't imagine living without. Who is going to:
- clean up the food under the table and on the kitchen floor
- put his furry butt on me
- leave clumps of butt fur all over the place
- bring me yucky tennis balls
- walk with me to the park and poop twice
- let me pretend his tail is a paintbrush
- calm down when I rub his belly button (it soothes the savagest of the G-men!)
- drag and shred garbage into Matthew's room
- be a wiggler when I get home
- protect the yard and house from squirrels and/or strangers
- bring me a belly to rub when I'm feeling sad
Most importantly, who's going to be my "little guy"? And who will let me be "his dude"?
Do you still remember when you told me you were my little guy? In my mind, you're still that little puppy who peed on my shoe at the Seal Beach Animal Control Center. Once you marked me, that was it...I was yours. You were one of my best friends for more than 8 years, and I still can't believe that I don't have you around any more.
When you died the world lost one of its brightest souls. But, as Ellie points out, you're still with us - like the Angels. And I can rest a bit easier knowing that Mena has her big brother back after what must have been a very long 2 weeks. Enjoy her company again...I know you were missing her at least as much as we were. Make sure you let her win a battle royale now and then, and don't get too mad when she steals your toys. And you guys remember to guard the house, take care of the yard, and take care of each other.
No matter what, please remember that I always tried to do my best for you, and that you have always been (and always will be) in my heart.