Dear Bubba…on my shoulder,

My Bubba,

I remember you so clearly as a puppy, how your widows peak was harsh and obvious, and how it later transformed into your sweet, yellow-lab face and german shepard body…and your stubby little legs, where in the world did you get those, dog? You used to wrap your paws around my neck when I’d pick you up, and I remember how you would nuzzle your snout into my collar bone and sigh.

The night I remember most clearly with you was one snowy, late night. I was shoveling the driveway in a steady snowfall, and you wanted to come survey the neighborhood and be with me. I let you out of the yard, and you took off down the street. You found a rabbit and a few cats, and the world was your oyster. You would check in occasionally, slobbering on my gloved hand, and then head on down the road. You loved your freedom, but you always stayed near by. I loved that so much about you, you Moscowdog.

On this snowy December night, I remember being in mid-shovel, and then I heard you make a noise–it wasn’t a growl and it wasn’t a whimper, it was a “look at me” and when I did, there you were, under the street light, looking over your shoulder at me. I know what you were saying. You wanted me to come be with you. You never did anything this clear before, and we never had a more understood moment after this.

We just sat in the street, under the safe glow of the street light with the snow hitting your coat, you slightly panting, and me thanking God for you. Without me even asking you to, you rested your jaw on my shoulder, and we continued to sit. I put my arm around your strong, furry back, and just as I sit closely to my closest human friends, I sat closely to my favorite creation I ever knew…you.

You aren’t here anymore, but I sometimes forget. I go in the backyard and see your bed you made under the tree in the garden,or I find an old bone or tennis ball you completely destroyed. The times you frustrated me are nothing compared to the times you loved me with everything you had. You lived to be with our family, and for that, you will always be my most favorite part of my young life. The cat’s got nothing on you, Bubbadog. Don’t worry, no one is gonna take your place.


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