I don't write this to be all sad and weepy, although we have had plenty of those moments since Friday afternoon. But what I really want to say is that my friends and family amaze me with their love. Luke and I don't have kids, and although we know it's not the same as children, we pour out all that love on our pets. When I posted on social media about having to put Chief down, I was overwhelmed by the love and support from, largely, my parent friends. Not that my non-parent friends weren't equally amazing, but let's face it, we're in our thirties, religious, and live in the South, so our non-parent friends are few and far between. But the response from my friends who aren't dog people or even pet people was so touching. It's kind of revolutionized the way I think about my sensitivity surrounding pets and being a parent. It's totally convicting to realize that the majority of the chip on my shoulder is completely non-existent anywhere but in my mind.
All of that to say, thank you friends, for being so loving and caring and recognizing our loss as a real loss. Thank you for calling, texting, emailing, Facebooking, and sending notes. Luke and I both read each and every one and feel so loved. Thank you for caring about something that may seem smaller or less important for no other reason than that you love us. And thank you for giving me a reason to change my own judgments about how pet people are perceived. We love you and thank you for loving us (and our pets) back.