To My Confident, My #1 Supporter in Life, My Doggy

Everyone said that it would get easier... that if I just gave it time, I'd feel better. I'm starting not to believe them. Every day is harder than the last. I miss you more than even thought was possible. I cry every single night, wishing for just one more snuggle session with you.

It seems like a lifetime ago that I was a scrawny preteen, terrified to even meet you at the shelter. I hid behind the fence and waited with Ally, secretly (or not so secretly) wishing that you somehow wouldn't be compatible. You were so full of energy and I wanted nothing more than to leave. But I knew that you'd make my family happy. I knew that mommy wasn't going to leave you there. She couldn't. And I count my blessings for that every single day.
You gave mommy a really big scare the day you decided to run head-on into a tree at the dog park. You were rushed to the vet and treated like you had been in a car accident. If we hadn't known it before, we knew it then: you were forever going to be a part of our lives and mean more to us than we could have ever known.
You were the best snuggler; always taking up a little too much of the bed and not understanding personal space in the least. But I wouldn't trade those sleepless nights for anything.
You were the best tissue for tears and the best listener for teenage drama. You were the constant when so much else changed. You always came to the door (usually with a shoe in your mouth), regardless of the time -- you never complained when we got home late or had been gone for days, months, or even whole semesters.

Thank you for teaching me about unconditional love. Thank you for letting me call you my puppy for so many years and for always loving me more than I can bear to imagine.
Thank you for being my best friend. I'll miss you always Ripley, but maybe one day it will get easier.

I love you Stinky!


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