Thursday, May 28, 2015

I miss my friend.

I lost my best friend a week ago. I think there was a small part of me that actually thought he might live forever. But nothing lives forever, and the always amazing Patch decided that almost 17 years was long enough to hold the crown of greatest dog ever. I’m going to miss him with all my heart.

He was tired. Not just from the years, but from the responsibilities. He carried the weight of our biggest burdens on his doggie shoulders whenever we couldn't. And even though those shoulders had grown crooked from arthritis, he never once complained. He was the strongest, most resilient living being I’ve ever had the privilege of knowing. Nothing could keep him down for very long. But like it always does, time finally caught up to him.

Until the last month or so of his long life, Patch didn’t waste a second of his time. He lived every single day to the absolute fullest. He loved the woods and made it his mission to sniff every square inch of the 30-plus acres behind the house. We must’ve walked those tree-lined roads five thousand times, maybe more. But the day he realized he didn’t have any more walks left in him was the day he decided it was time to go. 

I saw it in his eyes. He didn't want to do it anymore. And he'd earned the right to be done. 

When the vet pulled up the driveway the reality hit me, hard. This incredible dog’s inspiring life was about to come to an end, and I’d never get to see him again. That still hasn’t sunk in. I still expect him to greet me with a big toothy grin the next time I pull up my mom’s driveway. But that’s not going to happen. Ever again. That's the thing about death -- it's just so final. Who knows, maybe there's a place where kind souls go, but if they don't take dogs there, count me out. 

Thank you for everything, Patch. Especially for saving my life. I hope you know how much you meant to so many. You will be missed, but never forgotten, and most certainly, never replaced.  

I sure could use you here right now. I'm dealing with some heavy stuff and you always seemed to have the answers. You see, I’m having a really hard time figuring out how I’m going to get by now that my best buddy is gone. If you were here we could sit out on the back step and I could tell you all about it. And then everything would be ok. 

But you’re not here.

Rest in peace you gentle, selfless soul.

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