October 5, 1994 – March 16, 2006
It has been exactly five years and a few hours since Oscar left us to join the rest of the original vom Viersen Rottweilers “4 dogs, 15 legs” crew. I was fine until the universe decided to punch me in the gut by sending me to a web page with the poem “I Stood By Your Bed Last Night.” You’ve probably seen it before, but since the author is unknown, I’m going to include it here.
I stood by your bed last night, I came to have a peep.
I could see that you were crying, you found it hard to sleep.
I whined to you softly as you brushed away a tear,
“It’s me, I haven’t left you, I’m well, I’m fine, I’m here.”
I was close to you at breakfast, I watched you pour the tea,
You were thinking of the many times your hands reached down to me.
I was with you at the shops today, your arms were getting sore.
I longed to take your parcels, I wish I could do more.
I was with you at my grave today, you tend it with such care.
I want to reassure you that I’m not lying there.
I walked with you towards the house, as you fumbled for your key.
I gently put my paw on you, I smiled and said “It’s me.”
You looked so very tired, and sank into a chair.
I tried so hard to let you know that I was standing there.
It’s possible for me to be so near you everyday.
To say to you with certainty, “I never went away.”
You sat there very quietly, then smiled, I think you knew …
In the stillness of that evening, I was very close to you.
The day is almost over… I smile and watch you yawning
and say “Good night, God bless, I’ll see you in the morning.”
And when the time is right for you to cross the brief divide,
I’ll rush across to greet you and we’ll stand, side by side.
I have so many things to show you, there is so much for you to see.
Be patient, live your journey out … then come home to be with me.
Maybe it’s not the universe punching me in the gut. Maybe it’s just Oscar making sure I never forget him. Like I ever could. He is tattooed on my shoulder. He still has my back, just as he did in life.
Miss you, Opie. Be good until I get there. I promise I’ll have your Big Red Ball and a lot of time to play.