This morning while i drive my daughter to school, i saw a man walking his German Shepherd dog and right at that instant i remembered my Johnny. I became teary eyed again but i had to contain myself since i was driving. All the happy memories he left behind flashed on my mind. I still haven’t totally moved on and i still feel the pain and the emptiness even if it’s been more than a month since he passed. I am sharing with you my tribute to my sweet boy Johnny which i wrote just a day after he crossed the rainbow bridge.
In Memory of my Beloved Johnny
JOHNNY VON KELLY
(06 November 2003 – 28 May 2014)
I remembered the day when we got you from the breeder. I’ve always wanted to have a German Shepherd not only for it’s good looks but for it’s loyalty and intelligence. We did not choose you but among the five wonderful litters of pups you were the one who approached us with that cute face and wagging tail and then we knew that you were the one. At 3 months of age, you were so full of life, so naughty that you chewed on almost anything… the sofa, the table legs, the newspapers, etc. I also remembered the day when i arrived home from the office and i was so surprised finding slices of bread scattered all over the house. You grew up so fast and when you stand you could reach the table and that anything that i place there became your toys to chew on and play with. I also remembered waking up one morning and finding jelly beans candies scattered all around. I wondered how many jelly beans did you really ate. You were looking at me with that cute guilty looks and i just laughed.
We were all expecting you’ll cry over the first few days/nights with us because we thought you’ll be missing your mommy and your siblings but how wrong i was. You settled in immediately and you even slept in between the kids on their bed. You were so funny when i saw you cause you seemed so contented and so happy being with us.
We moved to our own home in 2004 and you were just 7 months then. You’re so big and you stayed indoors with us for quite sometime. The most visible reminders of your naughtiness inside the house were the 2 stair balusters which you chewed on and destroyed so badly that we had to take them off. After all those years i wondered why i did not even bother to have them replaced and when i am looking at them right now they all reminds me of you. When the fence and the gates were done, we decided that it’s time for you to go outside and play. You did not only like it but you loved being outside where there’s more freedom. The lawn is big and spacious and it became your playing grounds and most importantly there were lots of birds to chase. Yes, you love chasing birds and it became your hobby. I was so happy seeing you so joyful and playful and free.
All those years you became my loyal companion. As i do my gardening you were there and would sit beside me. As i water the plants, you were there following me around. You have been the guardian of the house and so intelligent enough to differentiate strangers from friends of the family. A lot of people passing by the house are frightened by just the sound of your bark… so deep, so full and so loud that i could even feel it echoing. Yet, no matter how big you were or no matter how frightening your barks were, you were so gentle with us.
As i write this here in the garden where you spent most of your life, i see a lot of reminders of you… lots of fur, your drinking bowl, your food bowl that i already scrubbed clean. I’m sure that if you were here you’re already sitting beside me now. There was so much emptiness and I still feel the pain of losing you.
On the early morning of May 28, my daily routine was preparing all the food for the cats and the other dogs in the house. As i walked outside the house holding your food i saw you in the garage laying down and i thought you were still asleep. There were really those times that i still need to wake you up. As i got nearer to you, i realized that you look different, your chest was not moving, you were not breathing anymore and as i see your lips they were pale and when i touched you i realized you were a little bit stiff. I cried hysterically loud that i’ve awakened the entire household. They all went down and went outside to be at your side and i was crying my heart out and still holding your food. The pain of finally realizing that you were really gone was so unbearable that i could not stop crying.
I knew you were getting old but in spite of your failing sense of hearing and eyesight you were still strong. You eat well, you’re not even sick, you even chased away the neighbourhood cat that sometimes visits the garden the previous night and you could still run and bark. Your passing was so totally unexpected, i never realized that it was this soon. It was just a relief that you did not die in pain and you just went peacefully in your sleep. We all made our final respect and i offered 3 beautiful yellow flowers that i picked in the garden where you used to run and play.
To my beloved Johnny, i will really miss you terribly. Mommy will be thinking of you always. Inspite of the pain and the emptiness i’m sure that as you cross over the rainbow bridge you were also sad that you have to go and that you were also thinking of mommy.
Run free my sweet and handsome boy. I love you so much and i will never ever forget you. I could almost imagine that at this very moment you were smiling back at me with your wagging tail and telling me not to worry and not to cry as much. I could almost hear you saying … “Don’t be so sad mommy, doggie heaven is not so bad after all. Look mum, i could hear well now, i could see well now. The garden here is way bigger than ours and yes there are so many dogs to play with. And mum, there are lots and lots of birds to chase. Thank you mum for all your love and care. Don’t cry so much because you’re already getting ugly with those big eyebags from constant crying. I love you too mum and I will also never ever forget you.”
Lots of hugs and kisses my beloved Johnny.
Johnny was cremated after all of us paid our last respect. Up to this time, i still cry whenever i see some of his fur in our garage. I am just letting nature takes it course as the wind blow away his fur. All of them might be one day gone but he will forever live in my heart and his memories i will cherish forever.