It’s been three years. It’s been three years since you died. I remember the day so vividly. I had stayed up all night just so I had more time with you. I couldn’t care less how heavy my eyes felt or how many times I yawned, I didn’t want to waste a single second. I talked to you for hours and we watched Scooby-Doo on Netflix, remember? We took a ton of pictures before we left. I didn’t have enough pictures with you. I still don’t. Time was suddenly slipping through my fingers, and I still had a lifetime of memories I wanted to share with you.
After pictures, we got in the truck. I should have ridden in the back with you, but the canopy was off, and it was raining. I didn’t want to be in the rain, and I didn’t want other drivers to see me bawl my eyes out. I was selfish, and I’m sorry. It could have been another ten minutes we had together.
I hope you understand why we did it. Watching you die was the hardest thing I ever had to endure. I sobbed on the way there and on the way home. I cried so much I didn’t even hear my phone when my friend called me. He wanted to make sure I was okay, but I wasn’t okay. Sometimes I’m still not okay. Sometimes I still cry. Life sucks without my best friend. They say time heals our wounds, but I don’t believe that to be true. I think we learn to just live with the pain. I know I still feel pain after all these years, but I’m used to it now.
I don’t want to dwell on the bad times, though. I know you wouldn’t want me to be sad. I’m one of the lucky ones. I was lucky enough to have a special dog like you. People go their entire lives without ever owning a dog, and I truly feel sorry for them. We shared a special bond and not everyone is fortunate enough to experience what we had.
Do you recall my surgery in 7th grade? I’ll never forget how excited you were to have me home after being gone for almost two weeks. As soon as the front door opened, you bolted for my lap. There wasn’t enough space on my lap while I waited to be helped out of the car, but you managed to leap up anyway. You covered my face with doggy kisses.
Remember the time we went for a walk and somehow you got away with my wheelchair? With your leash tied to the chair, You took off down the street, swinging your head side to side as though you were walking on a runway. I fell in the middle of the road, laughing uncontrollably. My friend chased after you. What was going through your head? It was the first time you didn’t stay by my side while out for a walk. You always stayed by my side even when we were home.
There were times I pretended to cry, and you did everything you could to cheer me up.
Remember the game we always played? You had to save me from the “blanket monster.” You whined every time you couldn’t save me.
I remember when I met you. You came to our apartment for us to meet you and Atlas. You stayed the night, and they put you in my room to sleep with me. All you did was whine. You didn’t want to be left alone with me. Funny how things change, huh?
I have only a handful of memories of you. I wish I could tell you I remember everything, but I’d be lying. I feel like my memories of you are slowly fading into oblivion, and there’s nothing I can do about it. I may not remember all the times we shared, but I will never forget you.
Thank you for everything you’ve done for me. Even though you’re no longer here, you’re still doing stuff for me. Thank you for all the loves and laughs. Thank you for following me around the house, and catching me every time I stumbled, especially in the bathroom. I’ll never forget how you helped me out of the tub or how you let me use you as a walker. You didn’t have to do those things. You weren’t a registered service dog, but you were my best friend who was looking out for me. Thank you for being the best dog in the world! Forget man’s best friend, it’s woman’s best friend.
Three years have gone by, and it’s still fresh in my mind. Where did the time go? I wish I could see you again. I wish we could have traveled the world. We got another dog, but Lucy doesn’t compare to you. I wish you could meet our newest family member, Logan. You would love him. Liam still asks about you. I tell him you’re in doggy heaven. I have to believe there is a heaven and you are there. I have to believe I’ll see you again someday. I hope you’re with Atlas, and I hope you two are chewing on tasty bones right now. I hope your tail is wagging, and your tongue is sticking out. Tell Atlas hi for me and that I love him. I love you, too. I love you more than life. I miss you every single day.
Your best friend,
P.S. I haven’t forgotten my promise to you.