He's gone. My friend went home and he took a piece of me with him. I
still can't handle thinking about it because it requires stepping into
the void. I feel so foolish because I labored to keep him with me as
long as possible and against all odds. I delighted in thinking that
we were beating all those odds. Here, all along, he had been
desperately ill and refused to let me see it, because he knew what I
wanted, to believe that we would live happily ever after. Is there
love any greater than that?
Even when I did see it, I didn't, because it was just too impossible
to fathom that an animal could continue to fulfill all my needs and
ignore his own. There never has been, nor will there ever be an
animal as lovingly devoted, intelligently submissive, selflessly
patient, tolerant and loyal as Max.
It was four years ago in January that Max nearly died the first time
at the age of 10. When I look back on it, I realize that I probably
should have let him go then. He had nothing but suffering for the
subsequent four years. But, he taught me a lot in those four years
that I only now realize.
Max was loyal without question, a quality of character and spirit I
need to pray for daily.
Max was affectionate up to the last minute, giving a friendly greeting
to every person and animal in the waiting room as his final moments
approached. I am not spontaneously friendly to everyone, particularly
in times of crisis.
Max was never suspicious or angry, hostile, vengeful or nasty. I
still have problems controlling those emotions.
On our walks, Max fearlessly went up to everyone to say hello. I
rarely step outside of my narrow comfort zone to approach strangers.
Max was patient and understanding when things didn't go his way. I
still have temper tantrums when people don't understand me or see
things the way I do.
Max never complained about anything; that's all I ever do.
Max was sincere through and through. I still put on airs and pretend.
Max did whatever he could to please me even when in horrible pain.
Now, in my pain, I only want to do something to make him proud of me.
I want to live up to his high standards. I want to be like Max.
Thank you my friend.
- Bonita Shapiro