Dad buried you today.
You are at rest now. Sleeping in a tomb at our backyard. We all wanted your final resting place to be here. At our home. Where you belong.
It will never be the same without you.
It is a moment of deep grief for the family. I don’t think we’ll ever stop grieving. Mom and Dad will surely miss you. So will Manang. They were your constant companions. You kept them company, you made them happy while Yen and I are away. You were their baby. They adored you, as parents adore their children. You took away the loneliness, the boredom, the pain of an empty nest.
You were Mom’s bestfriend and partner. You two always spent time together, perhaps even more than she and Dad did. When she read, you sat at her lap and kissed her. When she ate, you stayed beside her and asked to be fed (I still remember how you wanted to be fed with a spoon and how you would drink from our cups). When she retired for the night, and you’re still busy catching mice and insects, you stopped your activity (even when we knew you were still brimming with energy), and walked beside her to bed. When she needed to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, you woke up and accompanied her, and oftentimes, relieved yourself too. And when she woke up so early in the morning to prepare the family’s breakfast, there you were again, waking up so early too, with tired and sleepy eyes still, sitting at her foot, keeping her company.
You were less than a foot tall but your love was tall and mighty and faithful.
It has been said that it is wrong to humanize a dog. Because they are not our equals. I really don’t care. We felt that you were one of us, no matter how crazy that would sound. Many times, you acted like a real person. When we talked to you, you seemed to understand. I would even go as far to say that you are even more human than some people I know. You loved unconditionally. You never held a grudge. You never took it against us when we cannot bring you to church or to the mall. Not because you don’t care. In fact, it was painful to see your sad eyes looking through the balcony everytime the car left. We knew you wanted to be part of every trip but you just keep looking and waiting everytime we left and then greet us with so much joy and anticipation everytime we arrived. You drag your feeding plate near the dining table when we eat, because like true family, you want to dine with us, be with us. You watch TV with us, hear our never-ending stories, keep us warm through the night, then wake us up with warm kisses.
I find it hard to say goodbye. A big part of me doesn’t want to let go.
The last time I saw you was the month of May. I took your photograph, not knowing it would be the last one I’d take. Your skin was so shiny, newly grown, after you had your seasonal hair loss in March and April. Your eyes were glowing and happy. When we arrived, you danced and jumped and rolled around the sofa, like a exuberant child who had just seen his longtime bestfriend. You always loved to be hugged, and we did hug. I only regret that I didn’t hold you more that summer. I didn’t know you’d be gone too soon. It pains me, but the memory of that short span of time we were together is the only thing that brings me comfort right now. It is so painful, dear friend. The pain of your passing rips my heart apart.
You left us so soon. So suddenly. Somehow I would like to say it’s unfair. I knew that one day you’d be gone… I just didn’t expect it would be this way, this early.
Will we ever see you again?
I do not know if we’ll ever meet again in the afterlife. I have no idea if we’ll ever get to touch you again someday. They say only humans have souls. I would like to believe you have your own spirit. I really don’t know… But one thing I know – God is good. He gives and He takes away. And even if we are at loss for words with your untimely death, we still bless His name. We celebrate your life more than we mourn your death. If you could speak to us, we feel you would have wanted it to be that way also. You would have barked and yelped and wagged your tail in delight if you could understand all these.
So farewell our dear friend, companion, and bunso. Goodbye Yuri. It’s been an amazing 7 years. You will forever hold a special place in our hearts. We pray that God will fill the gaping hole that was left with your passing, with his peace and comfort.
Sleep now in peace.