Sassie did enjoy the wind in her hair and all the many scents she encountered along the short trip. Ruth’s Mom and Pop were waiting at the door. As soon as Ruth arrived, they came out to greet Sassie. Pop had put some treats in his pocket for Sassie. When he saw Sassie, he had a treat ready to give her.
Sassie looked into Pop’s eyes and saw the love and his need for a dog like her. Then Pop took Sassie’s toy from Ruth and started to shake it at Sassie. Sassie gave him a Play Bow and danced around trying to capture the toy. The love that flowed between
Pop and Sassie was beautiful to watch.
From that moment on, they were always together. They went fishing, played fetch, walked everywhere together, and when Pop sat down, Sassie would lie at his feet. Sassie learned some tricks that Pop loved to show off. There was “Roll Over,” and “High Five” and “Spin” and “Crawl,” and when Pop put his hand to his ear, Sassie would “Speak.”
As time went on, Ruth noticed that Pop was losing weight. She finally questioned him about it. Pop admitted that when he got the test results they were not good. He had advanced prostate cancer. He had not wanted to share the news with Ruth.
“Did Mom know?” Ruth asked. Pop admitted that she did.
Sassie became the comforter of the family. Pop never wanted to show his emotions, but if he wanted to cry, he would bury his head into Sassie’s fur and sob quietly.
The day Pop went to the hospital for the last time, Sassie lay at the front door all day. She continued to lie there whining and waiting for Pop’s return. Sassie stopped eating and wouldn’t leave the front door area.
Mom was upset to see Sassie’s constant vigil. After one week, Mom decided to help Sassie understand what had happened. Sassie did not wish to leave her spot by the door but was willing to get into the car with Mom. She paced from car window to car window, looking for Pop.
Mom drove to the cemetery and she and Sassie walked together toward Pop’s gravesite. As Mom got closer, Sassie pulled away from Mom and ran directly to Pop’s gravesite. She lay down on the grave, closed her eyes and just stayed there, quietly. Mom did not disturb her nor talk to her. After one hour, Sassie walked back to Mom and used her mouth to hand Mom her leash. She was ready to go home. After Mom and Sassie arrived home, Sassie kept kissing Mom’s hand as if to say, “Thank you,” and Sassie never again lay by the front door. She now understood.
I coached and edited for Helen through my Write Your Book with Me endeavor.
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