The other night, a ferocious thunderstorm woke me up. Rain lashed the house and thunder rumbled around us. I sat up immediately and it took me some time to get settled again.
It was what I didn’t hear that grabbed my attention.
No scuffling. No nails on hardwood. No sighing and licking of lips near my head.
You see, there is no longer an old dog leaning in, asking in his own sweet way to maybe-possibly-I’d-just-love-you-forever-if-I-could-join-you-in-that-bed kind of way.
When he was a tyke, he’d bound up the stairs and launch himself onto his bed of choice.
As he got older, he learned the boys’ beds were fair game but ours was a permission-only zone.
As he got even older still, he’d plod up the stairs and deposit himself next to my head, sigh, and lick his lips.
And in the flash of lightning I’d see his sweet old eyes staring back and me and I’d hug his neck and we’d gently lift his 68 lb arthritic self up onto our Queen bed, smoothing out a spot just for him.
And in the rumbling summer storm sounds that followed, the one that lingers with me still was his sweet sigh of contentment.
Oh how I miss that old fellow.
“If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go to where they went.” Will Rogers