UNLEASHED

National Over the Rainbow Bridge Day

Dear Mother:

I know today your heart is heavy and the tears flow easily. The bond and memories we shared are encompassing you.  But let’s go back to the beginning, I remember your story so well . . .

It was a cold winter’s day in 1996 when you saw a woman walking the most adorable shaggy dog. You approached her and inquired if she adopted her dog from the ASPCA. You clearly offended her with your naive comment but you had never seen any breed that resembled hers. Dripping with sarcasm, she informed you it was a rare breed called a Coton De Tulear. You immediately decided this was the only dog you wanted. You did your homework about the breed and its characteristics. Finding me was not easy.  The options were few. There were three breeders in the United States, a few in Canada, and the rest in Europe. You traveled to all the US breeders and were very discouraged by their dogs. You considered giving up and then fate stepped in.

They say that your animals find you and so I did. There was an ad for a Coton puppy in the New York Times. You were living four blocks from me in New York City. You begged the owner that day to let you see me. From the very first time you looked into my soulful black eyes, we both knew we were meant for each other. And in the middle of a snowstorm, a stranger placed me in your arms. Both our lives changed forever that day. 

It has been 15 years since you made that gut-wrenching decision that took me over the rainbow bridge.  I was only 8 years old when cancer ravaged my body and took me away from you. My passing left an empty hole in your heart that time will never erase.  I watched you suffer from above while I ran pain-free tail wagging towards the light. The unconditional pure love I feel for you transcends time.

I was your only surrogate child. I went to work with you each day including my last day on this earth. We would watch television together every night.  I offered you comfort during your darkest times as I nuzzled your neck and licked away your tears. I slept next to you every night and would fall asleep smelling your perfume. I would wake you each morning by putting my head on top of yours.  We were devoted to each other.

You have honored my memory throughout the years. My ashes sit in a beautiful obelisk on your night table. Pictures of me are still everywhere in the house. You planted a weeping maple tree in the backyard where I loved to play. Donations have been made in my name to many animal shelters in need around the world. You created an animal community where other pet owners can share their grief. My legacy continues because of you. I was too well loved to ever be forgotten.

Our love was limitless.

Our memories were countless.

Our devotion was endless.

Until we meet again.

Hampton

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