I lost a good friend yesterday. 16 years is a long run for a dog but it's never quite long enough.
I was 14 years old when my mom told me to get into the car and refused to tell me where we were going. I was not a fan of surprises at the time and I sulked the entire car ride...worried that we were about to visit one of my mother's friends. We pulled up in front of an unfamiliar house on the south side of Oak Park. My mother and I walked to the door and were greeted by a kind woman, she invited us inside.
THERE WAS A LITTER OF PUPPIES INSIDE! and I picked Ryder. He was the best present I've ever received.
It's been a beautiful 16 years. Ryder filled our lives with love and was a happy member of our family. Every time I came home from college, grad school, or adult life...he was waiting at the door for me. Always happy to see me.
The thought of him not being there the next time I go to my mom's house is enough to break my heart but I know that if there is a heaven it's for dogs. And he'll be waiting at the gates for me.