Goodbyes & Spotify Songs

I had her next to me for almost seventeen years, until the day I said goodbye.

Putting her to sleep was the kindest, selfless, most difficult thing I have ever done in my entire life.

Letting her physically go, was something, still to this day, I haven’t gotten used to.

An unspoken heartbreak

A heartbroken handshake I’ll take with me where I go

Although the sand may be washed by the sea

And though you may not wait for me, I’ll wait for you

It was the end.

And it was in that moment of goodbye,

I changed forever.

It’s been almost 3 years now, and not a day goes by where I don’t think about that September 1, 2013.

“I promise you,” I said to her. “I promise you I’m going to be ok.”

After carrying her inside my house and laying her down in her bed. I had tears streaming down my cheeks.

It was 5:45pm on a Sunday. The sky was bright pink, with subtle streaks of yellow glistening through the clouds. We just had our very last sunset together sitting on the green patch of grass under her favorite rosebush in the front yard. I carefully placed in her big brown circular dog bed, a bed large enough for two of her. She was a forty-five pound wise old beauty queen. She had a soul, made from gold, and deep brown eyes, which told me everything I needed to know about trust and companionship. I’m not sure how she did it. She she just did it. With a stare, or a deep sigh, she let me know everything was going to be ok for 16 and 1/2 years. And now, I wasn’t sure how I was going to do life without her.

But this was my test. This was my promise to her. I was lying on the rug next to her with my palm resting on the side of her sweet face. I kissed the tiny white spot, shaped like a star, on the top of her head.

I was raw, overtired and my heart was breaking.

My jean shorts were too big on me. I had barely eaten in weeks. I spent the last 72 hours praying, sobbing and trying to just breathe through the pain.

I stared at her while she stretched herself out for a yawn. The corduroy bed hugged the black and white layers of fur and her brown speckled wiry coat. I took everything in, for one last time. Her paws, head and belly dusted with perfectly symmetrical spots. Her warm black snout, nudged me whenever she wanted attention. Her tail, which spoke year’s worth of wisdom and those magnificent eyes that only knew truth.

She was a purebred Queensland “blue” heeler, who I rescued for $50 dollars, 15 years ago, clueless at the time; she would save my life for many years to come. We were the same; only she was a wise dog who taught me everything about life and how it must go on.

“I love you little girl, you are my heart and my soul and we’ll always be together, I promise you that too.” I said.

I glanced down to find my phone. I shuffled through my Spotify and found what I wanted. Patient love, a song that made me think of her whenever I listened to it. I pressed play.

An unspoken heartbreak

A heartbroken handshake I’ll take with me where I go

Although the sand may be washed by the sea

And though you may not wait for me, I’ll wait for you

Lyrics that burned through my heart and sent tears streaming down my face. She would try to stay alive forever if I asked her too, but it was my time to let her go. And I had to believe she’d be waiting for me on the other side.

Her face became moist with my tears falling heavy on her cheeks. I held her paw in my palm and stared at the silver star etched into the middle of her dog tag. A tiny piece of red string, which came from a piece of a handmade bracelet, was tied around the hook attached to her collar. It meant good fortune. It was the moment of letting go and I wasn’t quite sure how to do it.

“I promise you,” I said to her, “we’re both going to be ok and I’m going to see you one day soon.”

My mom and the vet were in the kitchen giving me the last moments with my best friend. It was in those minutes, I felt like everything I did, thought about and whispered to her had to matter. We were so connected; and

I had to believe she knew what I was going through. I wanted to be strong for her, like she had been for me for so many years. But now, we were both coming apart. Her body, breaking down and my soul, ripping wide open. It was time.

My grandmother passed away on a Sunday night. She was my other best friend. It only made sense that this was the time the universe would take her. The vet came in and explained that Mouse would be out of any kind of pain she was in. She also told me I was very brave. I said I had to be. All I ever knew was how to be weak and strong at the same time.