When I think of my sweet boy, Princeton, I feel a great big hole that is filled with great sadness. I try not to think of his last moments, lying on the vetenarians table. The vetenarian kindly asked me, “Would you like some more time?” I wanted so much to ask, “Yes please, thirteen more years. Please let us have thirteen more years.” I fought the tears because I didn't want Princeton to see me cry during his final moments. But I couldn't keep from sniffling. I put my arms around him and layed my head next to his. I didn't want to let him go. He was my best friend. He never stabbed me in the back. judged me, or hurt me. He always listened to me and seemed to understand every word. His love was pure and innocent. All he wanted was to be with me. To be near me. He hated for me to leave him, even for just a few minutes. He would wait, right at the gate for me to come home. He always knew I would come home to him and his joy for that moment was always exhilarating.
He was a diamond that I found at a local animal shelter. He was fully grown when I adopted him and had been an awesome pet ever since. Never once did I regret adopting him. How could anyone just throw him away?
As the medicine went into his veins, he cried out. Was he in pain or was he feeling my pain? The vet could end his suffering but he couldn't end mine.
I don't want to remember him lying on the vet's table lifeless. I wanted him to still be with me. I want him to be nudging me for more petting or for “just one more” treat. I wanted him to still be my side as I went through my house cleaning, having to ask him to move so I could sweep, mop or vacumn. I wanted him riding in my car with his head out the window while his ears blew in the breeze. I wanted his presence, his sweet being.
I thought of the times I would shoot him with my finger and he would fall to the ground and stick all four legs up in the air. He wasn't just dead, he was “stiff” dead. I laugh when I think about that. He loved doing that trick because he knew it always made me laugh.
He had decided it was time, not me. When he walked up my steps for the last time, he knew that he wanted it to be just that, his last time. He was old. He was blind. He was hard of hearing. His bones hurt from arthritus. He was tired and he was ready. His breathing was hard and sporatic. He tried to be strong but his old body wouldn't let him. His back legs quit working, probably from a stroke.
I found him in the middle of my yard, standing regal and beautiful sniffing the wind. I thought maybe he was in a daze, but now I believe he was listening to a voice that was only his to hear.
His heart stopped and my tears could finally be released as they dribbled down onto his beautiful black and white coat. I told him, “I'll see you soon Buddy.” He was gone, but I know he heard me. His assignment now was to go over the beautiful Rainbow Bridge and wait for me. He will be sitting right at the gate watching for me, wagging his tail in joyful anticipation.
I know, without a doubt, that when it is my time to go, he will be right there waiting, as always, to walk me home.