Strider, Bubba, Pookie face, baby boy, my heart, Striderrrmannnnn,
My heart aches today, a day that should be like any other, no different, nothing new, but today is the day you left without me for a new life in the sky... I knew that when I left that day, in my heart, that would be our last goodbye, I hugged you and told you were a good boy and I loved you oh so much. If I could of been there, I would have, but you never showed me your weakness, you were to proud to tell me you were going to die.
So when I go home in 3 weeks, it will be the first time in almost 9 years you wont be there to great me, to stop me dead in my tracks because I was gone for a while. The house will be lonely, there will be no bark at the door... but I know you'll be there. I know you'll watch over us, keep us safe, keep Dallas in line.
When you came into my life I was 11, you changed my world. You were so hurt and so scared. You had been abused in your first retirement, you were abandoned that day. We had always talked about adopting one of "you guys" and I couldn't stand the hurt in your eyes, I had to take you home,show you that people aren't bad, so I begged and I pleaded and you were mine. You never knew another day of pain in the hands of humans again. You learned to trust, to play, to love again. We became best friends, we've been through so much. My first kiss, boyfriend, middle school, highschool, prom, graduation, and you were there to visit me in college, but there will be no more visits... well at least not the tangible kind, but you know how to get here, Ill wait for you. You were there when I would cry, you licked away my tears, you never wanted me to be sad.
I knew the day would come when I had to say goodbye to my best friend, but never imagined it would be so soon. I wanted to be there with you, I felt I owed you that... but what I owed you more was peace, youth, and to be free of pain. I couldn't be selfish, you never had. When mom told me you couldn't eat your pig ear, when you didn't want to chase kitties on your walks, when walks no longer made you jump for joy, and that you looked at her and your eyes said help me, I told her to let you go. I owed you that. Im sorry I couldn't be there to say goodbye, to hold you in my arms until you were safe at the other end, to tell you I loved you one last time, to kiss your head one more time. Strider, you've left a hole in my heart that will take a long time to heal, but I know you're here to help me, in my hopes, my dreams, and you'll be here to guide me like you always have. The love you've given us all these years is enough to last an eternity, and it will heal all wounds... in time. You will be forever faithful and one day we'll be together again. I can't tell you when, I don't know, but play at the bridge and be healthy and strong again, for me, I want you to.... Winnie and Rocky will wait for us with you... You guys were always the coolest dogs on the block, and now you can be the coolest dogs in heaven. You may have never won a race at the track, but you won the most important ones, the race to the couch, the bed, and most importantly the hearts of everyone you met... You are so loved.
So goodbye for now, I love you so much... please don't ever forget that. I'm sorry that you got sick and were in pain, so I did the best thing I could, I let you go... I told mom it was okay. So here is my final goodbye to you, I wish I could have been there. Don't worry about the tears Bubba, you dont have to lick them away, they'll dry up when I heal, but Ill miss you always. Thank you for everything, I owe you.... you introduced this family to the world of retired racers we are forever indebted to you... I hope you enjoyed your retirement because we sure enjoyed sharing it with you. Until we meet again I love you.
The sky will shine a little bit brighter tonight, for there will be a new star, and if its half as big as his heart it will shine forever...