This is Liam, again.
If you’re following my work, then you’re probably familiar with the fact that my family recently lost a beloved member, our dear Tigger.
He was the baby of the family, always so happy and bouncy around everyone.
And, he had been with us for many years. The end was inevitable, but saying goodbye still hurts like hell.
In one of my last articles, I mentioned a letter of a colleague describing what happens in a dog’s final moments. I’ll link that below for you.
It helped a lot, but my family is still processing the fact that Tigger’s contagious smile won’t be staring at us as we drink our morning coffee anymore.
To help us process the sorrow even better, I came up with an idea.
Each family member had to write a list of things they wished they had told Tigger before he crossed the rainbow bridge.
I’ll keep my parent’s list for myself, but I’m more than happy to share mine with you.
I hope you’ll find it helpful and healing just as much as I did if you’re dealing with a loss, too.
1. More “I Love You’s”
I know I’m not shy when it comes to saying those magical words, but I kinda believe I didn’t use them enough for Tigger.
I wish I could go back in time and tell him “I love you” every time the clock starts a full hour.
I wish I knew the exact number of times I told him how much I loved him.
But, I still feel like it’s not enough… not even close.
2. It’s Okay To Chase That Squirrel
Oh, man… He loved chasing those back yard squirrels!
My mom had a small feeder set up for those fluffy creatures, and Tigger loved lurking nearby, waiting for the right moment to start the chase.
I don’t think he was a mean dog. He loved all animals, and I truly believe those squirrels were his friends.
I wish I had not yelled at him everytime he went after them.
I wish I could finally tell him: Go on, chase that fluffy tail, buddy!
Everything’s fine. You can dig a hole in mom’s flower bed. You can chew my house slippers. You can climb on top of my head. I honestly wish I allowed you all those things I never did.
3. You Make Me Feel Better
I have anxiety. It’s not as bad as it used to be, but I still get attacks from time to time.
Hugging Tigger used to calm me down.
He had this radiating energy that made every worry go away.
Oh, dear Tigger, I wish I had just told you how much you made me feel better about myself.
I wish I had told you your hug was truly magical.
We have other dogs, kudos to them, but I don’t think any of them would ever be able to calm my anxiety the way you did.
4. I’m Sorry
I’m sorry, Tigger, for ever being upset with you, for yelling at you, for not finding time for you.
I’m sorry that my own life was sometimes too much to handle, so I had no patience for your kind soul.
I know you were just asking to play. I know you were just asking for cuddles… nothing more.
I’m sorry for not being the ideal dog owner you deserved.
I’m sorry if I ever made you sad, mad, or disappointed. I didn’t mean to.
Forgive this fool for not realizing in time what truly matters.
I’d be smarter in my next life, I pawmise.
5. You’re My Best Friend
When I think back in time, I don’t remember ever telling you that you were my best friend. You were the first dog I actually helped raise. You were my pride and joy, and definitely my best friend.
Now, it’s too late to tell you that.
All I can do is write those bittersweet words on the gravestone we’re planning to put on your resting place on the farm.