I have drafted so many versions of this message, every one of them different. I knew that this day was coming as our german shepherd slowly aged and the hips could no longer work. And the day finally came and I am speechless at to the lessons this neurotic, allergy-inducing, scared-of-cameras, tennis-ball loving creature has taught me the last 48 hours.
Yes, our farm – hardly a farm, we live in a condo in the heart of Los Angeles with a back patio of now more than 50 square feet but have more two four-legged creatures per one two-legged creature – lost one of its ringer leaders on Sunday. Sadie was sent back to chasing squirrels and tennis balls on Sunday and her loss has left me gasping for air. She wasn’t my dog. I didn’t bring her home. I wasn’t around for when she was a puppy. But before I knew it, I spent a better part of a decade in her life and as she said goodbye, I realized she was the pillar of my daily routine for over 4,000 days. Each day we started and ended it together. It started with chasing cats and squirrels or tennis balls on hour long walks when she was younger.
As she aged, the walks got shorter. And it ended on Sunday morning with one more walk – well, I carried her and we stood together as my favorite time of day descended on us. Dawn. Our walks were stands the last year but yet there we stood multiple times a day, and each time she seemed to take in the sun and the air like the true outdoor person I am. We stood there together. Not knowing how much we truly loved doing it together.
I looked back at those walks, those stands, those moments – and she helped me through so much. Standing there, contemplating life together. She looking for that squirrel and me simply learning to breathe and stop.
Sadie has blessed my life more than I ever gave her credit for. Here was this creature that was scared of cameras. Yes, this website is mostly about photos. So I always had a camera in my hands. Thus, it took some work to get her on camera. I took it as a challenge. As I looked through what I had of her, I was amazed once again at how much she truly meant to me.
Thank you Sadie. Thank you for letting me walk you. Thank you for walking me. Here are some of my favorites – A SHEPHERD’S LOVE.