With a heavy heart

A week after my brother’s wedding, my then-fiance and I adopted a dog from a shelter. We are both dog people and for about six months had been looking to add a furry friend to our lives. He found our girl. Tucked in a cage, scared, chasing her tail. He found her.

I highlight that because since finding the love of my life, he has brought all my other loves into our life.

The little dog shook and didn’t spare us a glance. A worker brought her into a private room and she focused her attention on the worker. But I could tell. She was a good girl (an oxymoron, all dogs are good, they are the best).

The shelter was closing for the night but they stayed open to process our paperwork. This was not a facility with the luxury of time. They were not a no-kill place and she had been there for months already.

When we went back to pick her up two days later, after she was spayed, she raced toward us. I sat in the back of the Mazda and we drove to our condo. She was matted and dirty, we couldn’t bathe her until she healed. She showered us with love.

I took her for a walk and then we took a nap on the couch. And she fit so perfectly into our lives from that moment on, I know God led us to her.

Yesterday, she wasn’t herself. I took her to the vet, she underwent surgery, she was recovering well, but she didn’t wake up this morning. She didn’t suffer a single day.

Today, we’re heartbroken. Today, we cry. But today, I’m so grateful for her. We gave her eleven years and she gave us her heart. She cherished us.

We went from engaged, to married, to parents of two children and she helped us through every stage. Coming home and not seeing her sweet face in the window is hard. Missing her steals my breath. But if the only way to avoid the pain is to never have known her, I still choose her.

Rest well, my sweetheart. You were an angel on earth to us. I’ll miss you forever but one day when I’m not hurting so bad, I’ll honor you by rescuing someone else.


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