Friday, March 20th, 2020 is a day I will never forget. To many people in California, it was the first day of lockdown in the wake of the widely spreading virus known as COVID-19. To me, it was the day I said goodbye to my best friend.
Indie, a rescue bluenose pit bull, was my first and only dog and I’m pretty sure he knew that. No matter where I’d go, he would follow me there. I quickly came to realize that there’s nothing he hated more than to be alone so I did my best to take him everywhere. He was there at my side during my darkest days, as well as, the best moments of my life (including my wedding where we became a family of three). We had a special bond that could never be broken even as I sadly watched him take his last breath.
On Christmas Eve, my wife and I got the news that is every dog owner’s nightmare; He was diagnosed with lymphoma. We were heartbroken. He had already been through so much in the past (including an emergency splenectomy a couple years before), but had always fought his way back to a full recovery. We didn’t know exactly how long he had to live but we knew we would continue to do everything possible to give him the best life that he deserved. He responded great to the treatment and even showed mostly signs of his normal healthy self. Things were looking up; until that morning (three months shy of his 13th birthday), the cancer decided to take over his body without any clear warning signs. There was nothing more we could do and it was extremely difficult for me to accept at that moment. I know that he gave us everything he had this time and I could see it in his eyes. He was loyal, smart, loving, silly, patient, obedient, and most of all the strongest dog I would, and may ever, know.
It still doesn’t seem real that he’s gone and I find myself waiting for him to pop his head up from his bed to see where we’d be going next. With each passing day, I find comfort in knowing that God (if you’re a believer) has a plan for us all and (if you’re not) everything happens for a reason. In October, my wife and I were very blessed with our first baby: a boy. His due date is June 24th; Indie’s rescue birthday is June 22nd. Yesterday, on Good Friday, we unexpectedly received the call to pickup Indie’s ashes and finally bring him back home.
There is a lot of unknown in the world today but one thing is for sure…we can all use this time to think about what’s really important and do our best to be there for each other in any way possible. If you happen to be alone during this time, then really think about adopting a dog who may even impact your life the way Indie did for me. First, be prepared to go all-in if you do and love them unconditionally. You never truly know how much time we have left on this Earth even with or without a pandemic.
In honor of #nationalpetday and to give a glimpse of the best boy there ever was, here is my…