The tears have been flowing all day and the words for our precious memories can't come just yet...I read "Dog Heaven" this evening...that book we bought all those years ago just because it was such a sweet story. Now it's your story...there will be no bad dreams and no pain for you tonight as you curl up in your fluffy cloud bed. Good night my girl, my angel dog...I love you, Momma Dog
April 30, 2006...I'm looking at the picture taken of you and Sophie last year on this same day, the one of you two on your 10th birthday. You are both so beautiful, fresh from being bathed and groomed, wearing your new pink bandanas and happy dog faces! It was a good day for all of us...little did we suspect what the rest of the year would bring. I had hoped to have your tribute done by now, but I can't do it yet...the sadness from knowing your pain during your last weeks and the grief over losing you still overcome the memories of our wonderful times together. But I am starting to have those moments when I can see you with two tennis balls in your mouth or rubbing your face on your blanket after you had something good to eat and then I smile! I promise that I will write it one day. I think of you everyday, Sara, and I still see you everywhere. I wish I could hold you and look into your beautiful brown eyes and feel the softness of your blonde fur. Happy birthday my girl, my sweet Sara! I love you...always, your Momma Dog.
November 26, 2015...Good morning Sara! Another Rainbow Bridge anniversary is upon us. I remember the exact moment ten years ago tonight when I knew that I had to let you go. I am thankful that Dr. Westbrook was able to come to us the next morning. He was always so kind to you from the first time he held you up as a wee pup and called you "new start". I told you that I was going to throw your tennis ball but I would not be there when you turned around to bring it back to me and I do believe I heard a small sob come from his direction. Yes, you were a new start but you were also a continuation of my love for golden retrievers that began with Chopper. I said there would not be another when Chops went to the Rainbow Bridge, but it wasn't long before I decided that there would be another, and it would be a little girl golden and I already knew what I would call her. I met Chopper's mother Golden Sara Underfoot when she was "with puppy" and you are her namesake. An ad in the newspaper said "golden retriever pups for sale" and the next day I left your first home with you tucked under my arm and a receipt for "QTY. 1 Description..Female Golden Retriever Puppy" in my hand. I still have that receipt. My only regret about that day is that I didn't bring your little sister with us, but as great good fortune would have it she was still available and joined us several weeks later. We stopped at Petsmart to get you food, toys, and other puppy necessities and I told you "I don't know you yet but I already love you". The "circle of life" continued and just like Rafiki did to Simba in "The Lion King" I held you up to the sky in the backyard so you could survey your realm. You always wore a collar with purple, the color of royalty in it during your whole life. The cotton ball with puppy breath turned into a blond beauty with big brown eyes and the cutest darned eyelashes and a black bowtie "mustache". You and Sophie became "The Girls"...best friends when you played "face ball" together but not so best friends when you stole Sophie's food. The bad news about your hip dysplasia came when your were only six months old. "The worst hips on the youngest dog that I have ever seen" is what we were told and so the next two years were about operations, long hospital stays, and therapy. You were finally able to enjoy your life and you did it all with zest...gobbling your dinner, splashing in your water bowl or wading pool, swimming, endlessly chasing your tennis balls and trying to get more than two in your mouth, barkfests with the neighborhood dogs and howling along with mom, having your chest scratched, sprawling out on the bed on your back with feet in the air, and sneaking off with my socks. You didn't like the boys much. Remember your cute little lab/golden boyfriend Monty from training class in Georgia? "Sara, Sara your brown eyes haunt me. I'll never forget you, I love you...Monty". He would look at you so sweetly and wag just the tip of his tail and you would stare straight away and growl. I am sure that he is there at the Bridge so be kind. And I hope you are behaving with Mr. C. because he is after all the reason you came into my life! Remember how baby boy Trix hopped after you? He was fascinated by you and I think he was determined to make you love him! Sadly I believe the surgeries that saved you as a youngster made you ill as a senior. It was heart wrenching to watch all the things you enjoyed so much be taken away from you until all you had was what little I could do to comfort you. I remember staying with you at night on the living room floor looking out at the moon and wondering how much longer you would be with me. Dr. Modglin did what she could to help you in those last weeks. You have been gone now for almost as long as you were here with me. Last night I looked out at the full moon and as I do on every "SaraSophie moon" I imagined you watching me from the other side. When I knew it was Sophie's time to go to the Bridge I asked you to be there for her and you came to me in a dream early in the morning to tell me that you were coming to meet her. Tomorrow, November 27, I will remember my Sara Lee Pupcake with a smile on my face and in my heart and no tears I say I say! I will wear a Rainbow Bridge pin and burn a purple candle! I will think of you together again with Sophie and Trix and the rest of your Bridge family...Chopper and Wilson, Lucy and Poppet! And I will forever be...your momma dog.