I died on a Tuesday.
I was old. My once golden fur had long since faded to white. My joints ached. My body hurt. The seizures were robbing my mind of more of me every day.
I’d wandered the backyard. I tossed my tire rope to myself for a while. I chased my ball. I remembered being a younger pup; I could play fetch for hours, rest for a few moments and hit the grounds for more.
I couldn’t do that anymore. I rolled around in the fresh sod. It felt good on my skin.
I ran around the yard anyway. Until my chest was heaving to the point I couldn’t pant hard enough. My body hurt.
I knew my days were numbered.
Cancer was ravaging my aging frame. The tumor had grown back so quickly. I knew I was on borrowed time. I’d spent the past weeks enjoying my moments.
My youth was turbulent. As a puppy I bounced around to different homes. This last house was new to me, but I’d been with my forever family for seven years now.
They stood by me and loved me for all of my abilities. They understood my need to explore and investigate – even if they didn’t often let me out to see all the corners of my world.
In return, I’d helped train the dumb black lab they brought home. He’d grab people food off the table and we’d share. I helped raise the tiny ugly bald puppies they brought home. Now they could throw tennis balls for me to chase.
I hurt, but I was happy.
I was ready.
One of the human pups left the door open. I wandered out to join them in the front yard.
But this time I had no desire to run away.
I sniffed the air. I remembered this neighborhood; it was where I’d been a puppy.
I sat down, ignoring the pain from my arthritis. I watched my family play. I’d watched my tiny bald puppies grow up. I’d guided my mom and dad toward parenthood via the undying love and affection only a fur child can give.
I had no desire to run away. I’d explored this world.
I was ready.
I whimpered in front of door. I panted heavily. And I was taken to the vet.
I spent my last moments with my mom and dad. I explored the office. I knew the vet’s scent.
I was ready.
I was lifted onto the table. I wish I could have talked to them. I would have let them know I was ready.
They both held me. They pet me. They whispered they loved me. They told me it would be ok.
I know. I wish I could have told them I knew. I was ready.
The doctor stood. He stepped back. He told them my heart had stopped. The worst was over. I was gone.
I watched them cry. Mom’s tears soaked my fur. She stroked my body.
I no longer hurt. I was free from pain. I was a young pup again, with all the energy in the world.
I wish I could have let them know. I was ready. I died happy. I’d found my forever home. I knew I’d always have a home, and would live forever in their hearts.
So we said goodbye.
It was a Tuesday morning.