I should not have waited so long to speak of what is in my heart. But the end has come upon me quickly and I struggle to give voice to feelings that overwhelm me.
To many I am an old scared dog barely worth a second glance. To my family I am precious.
My life has been full of ups and downs. I’ve been a stray and a mother. I’ve been hit and kicked, starved and forgotten. I am younger than I look. The hard life I have lived has taken a toll on me.
For the past two years my daughter, Shiloh, and I have lived at Asherpark. There we have known only kindness. There I received a new name. No longer Marble (too cold and stoic a name), I became Mama Eleanora the Beautiful.
I had a year and a half to run free at Asherpark. I chased the shadows in the pasture and ran from imaginary coyotes. I was the only dog allowed to beg for food when the people were eating. I’ve had more than my share of steak and salmon.
My health took a turn for the worse a few months ago. I lost what little appetite I had and began to have accidents in the house. I was horrified when I soiled in the house, but everyone told me it was okay and not to worry.
Mom knew I did not want painful things done to me to save my life. I am too afraid of strangers and strange places. I asked only that I could end my days at home at Asherpark with my people and my daughter near me.
And so that day has come when I must say goodbye. The vet will come this afternoon to help me on my way. Mom will hold me in her arms and whisper that she loves me as I take my last breath.
I do not grieve for what I will be leaving. My journey through this world is complete. I have touched many souls through my suffering and shown that forgiveness is possible in the midst of terrible cruelty. My life will end much more gently than it began.
I do regret leaving my beloved Shiloh. She will not understand why I am gone, but I know she will be loved and cherished at Asherpark.
To those who saw my worth and did so much to save me, thank you. I am grateful for the kindness of strangers and the love of those who know me.
Now I must prepare for my journey. I go to join the other souls who once called Asherpark home. I will not be far away, held close and dear in the memories of those who knew and loved me.