How Do You Say Goodbye….
This Friday we had to say goodbye to our big ‘ol lion, Daddy.
Being somewhat naïve, I thought I was prepared, knowing that Daddy was sick, but I quickly learned that you can never be prepared for the hole in your heart that hurts terribly, or prepared to cry out of nowhere, or even be prepared to understand how the rest of the human and dog family will react. Prepared? Not a chance, but I did know one thing, even though it sucked bad, it was the right decision.
When he came to us only nine short months ago, skinny, weak and hairless, we had no idea he would blossom into such a strong, furry, balanced, funny, sweet, and mischievous buddy to all, owned by none, lion with vanilla feet. There was nobody Daddy didn’t love (especially the ladies) and nobody who didn’t love him, no command he would listen to (unless there was treats), no kisses he would give (unless accidental) but he would hold your hand, just so you knew he was there. Daddy was talented in ways you could only appreciate living with him. He was the “coolest” dog who laid by the fireplace, master at popping tennis balls, best grill pee(er) ever, a magician with a bbq chip bag, [opening the bag carefully at both ends with such pristine accuracy where we questioned if it was actually done by a dog (it was him)], lover of the orange kong ball and belly rubs, could hear the food cabinet (or the fridge) open from anywhere in the house and would accompany me at the computer every day, no matter what time of night or how he was feeling.
He was stubborn, entertaining and our best friend even after such a short period, so how do you say goodbye? Honestly, I don’t know and maybe I never will, because there will never be another Daddy. I know in my heart the time he was with us, he was happy, was spoiled rotten, loved unconditionally, loved us and also told us when it was time, and after all the joy he brought our family, how could we not listen?
I don’t believe anything can make that decision easier, but by listening to what he was trying to tell us, confirmed our choice to be the right one. There comes a point where you have to put your feelings to the side and draw the line between selfishness and love. Yes, we wanted more time, but no, we couldn’t put him through any more. As painful as it was for us, he deserved to go in peace.
People have already asked me if I would adopt an older dog again and to answer I will quote my son “H to the Y”! Absolutely. I have no regrets. The happiness Daddy brought into our lives could never be replaced and knowing that the last months of his life were spent in love, is all it takes for me. Every dog deserves a chance to be a part of a real family, and no dog should live out their life without one.
He will be missed by all who loved him, which were many, and he will always be our Daddy, our big ‘ol lion —The Best Dog Ever!