How Do You Let Him Go?

Seven years ago I opened a birthday card from a friend. In it was the most wonderful gift – a promise of a dog…whenever I wanted it.

I had not been divorced for long, and was living on my own. When I left my husband, I left our dogs as well, and I had been missing them terribly.

That promise turned into Shiner, my black lab.

Everything in the house reminds me of him. There is the floor that he would try to sit on, but because it was slippery, he would slip down until he was laying down. He would sit up again and again, not quite understanding why he couldn’t hold his ground on the kitchen or bathroom tile.

At the top of the stairs is a picture of him, about 7 weeks old in the bathtub, the victim of a cruel joke titled Bath Time.

In our room at the foot of the bed lies his dog bed.

In the back of the car is his leash and collar…untouched.

On the mantel is his bone.

In the freezer is his peanut-butter filled Kong.

In the laundry room is his bowl.

In the closet his ball.

All that is missing is Shiner. And it is sad.