1 September 2017
I pulled up into my parents’ countryside driveway. I parked on the grass next to my sister’s Jeep. My heart was in my throat. My stomach was weak. I gazed over, through the driver’s window, and gulped at the sight of the family dog standing by my car, panting, happily waiting for me. I smiled, and as I got out of my car, I tried to ignore the fact that Sailor was only walking on three legs. I forced the excitement into my voice as I pet him like crazy, buttering him up with sweet words of encouragement and love: “How’s my little Sailor boy? How are you doing? Are you happy to see me? Huh?” His long tail wagged, tongue lolling, chocolate brown eyes lit up with joy despite the pain he probably felt in his leg. That day would be his final day on this Earth, and he didn’t even know it…
Several days before, my mom had called my cell phone to give me unfortunate news. Sailor didn’t have a broken leg, but rather, he had bone cancer, and it had already spread throughout his body. There was nothing the vet could do. Two days before that, my mom had called me to tell me our family’s old Shih Tzu poodle dog, Holly, had died in her sleep. Two dogs in one week. I was crushed. Even more of a crush was wholeheartedly deciding that I was going to be there with Sailor, alongside my sister, as they put him down. It was THE hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. Watching the light fade from his eyes gave me have an even more profound sense of devotion, love, and adoration to animals. The excitement and joy and love that he showed before that first shot made me feel guilty later for having to put him down. I do not regret being there, though, no matter how hard it was. He needed to see us and be comforted by our presence. He was only six years old.
Those deaths, ontop of other things, has made it an interesting summer. It has really made me appreciate God, though, and the time I got to share with my loved ones. Life is short, and we are never guaranteed tomorrow. Every moment is precious, and every person in your life is designed by God to be a special presence in your life. Be grateful for the small things, don’t get angry about things that won’t matter on your death bed, and always pray your very hardest. Live for God the way the Bible requires, not any way that people tell you to, and always work your hardest with those loved ones and those careers and hobbies that matter the most to you. Don’t take anything for granted, because tomorrow, it may not be there.
Tragedy can make the sanest person go mad, but only if we let it. If we have God on our side, draw comfort and strength from Him and never give up, only then will we succeed. Too often in this world we see suicide rates continuing to go up. Whenever I hear about that, I always think about how tragic that is, because life is precious, and nothing, no matter how bad it is, should ever lead you to that level. Those of you who are hurting today, rely on Jesus. He is the author and perfecter of our faith. He will lead you through, but only if you believe in him and trust Him. Have faith that He will pull you through and will lead you through better tomorrows. He has a unique and wonderful plan for each and every one of our lives, and if we daily read & study His Word and learn from it, we will be comforted, we will succeed in our endeavors, and we will receive God’s wisdom & guidance to do and say the right things at all times. This is my daily prayer. My dogs’ deaths will always stay with me, but I look forward to the future, of loving others, especially our cats and future dogs and cats just as much or even more so as Holly & Sailor. I still miss them terribly. But I will never forget the memories we have. Most of all, I will never forget the comfort God gave me when the going was tough, all because I relied on Him.
Holly & Sailor, you will always & forever hold a special place in my heart.
Have a great week!! 🙂