I started biking again...
Fresh air is a good remedy for heartbreak. It’s still hard to wake up and realize losing Skai is not just a bad dream. As he got older, I sometimes woke up in the middle of the night and checked on him to see if he was breathing. The notion of time being limited was always in the back of my mind.
Skai is gone, but I see him everywhere. On the bed, stretching, rolling on his back, wanting me to scratch his chest. He was a lucky dog, he was my Zen dog.
Just this morning I saw him by my side when I was on my yoga mat. He loved yoga. Well, for him yoga meant snoozing and chasing bunnies beside me while I was doing down dog or stood on my head. He didn't need to practice down dog. Dogs invented the pose and no human can even get close to their perfection. They are born with down dog in their DNA!
I often joked that I was under Skai's constant surveillance. He didn't really show it directly because that would not be cool, but whenever I left his proximity while we were at a beach or at a park with friends, I was told he was looking in my direction the whole time I was away... He was waiting. He worried where I was.
It has been really hard without him, but your words of kindness have made me feel so much better. In fact, I am completely overwhelmed by your love and compassion. Since Skai's death, we’ve received thousands of messages, poems, letters, flowers, trees to plant, chocolate, cookies and even a delicious cheesecake!
You all have gone out of your way to make me feel better and I am speechless. I’ve said it many times – all I had to do in life is aspire to be at least half as good as Skai. This now will be my mission. To be as good as my dog.
You and I know we have so much to learn from our animal friends. It seems that your dog is a good teacher and you are good students because you did exactly what they’d do and showed your concern, compassion and love.
But this past week is not just about Skai. It is about honoring your losses and heartbreaks too.
You are proof that the world is good at its core and most people are caring and loving.
I know, it’s hard to see how senseless and cruel a few people can be. Their heart is ill and their fear and pain failed to convert into love and compassion. Instead, they express their sickness in unimaginable violence. Manchester, Brussels, Paris, Lyon... so much suffering. It’s heartbreaking.
But you and I also know that love comes in extra strong at times of hardship, grief and loss and humanity rises to its greatest heights.
In one of my 'conversations' with Skai I told him I didn't want to be sad forever and that I’d love to transform the sadness of losing him into helping you and your dogs even more. As a veterinarian of almost 30 years (it is crazy how time flies) I have seen over and over that happiness and joy does not come with money or social rank. It comes with caring for these we love and appreciate and focusing on helping others.
This week, I was left speechless. I never felt so much love and kindness before. The whole week I was thinking how I could thank you and thousands of others; dogs lovers, friends and the community.
First, I’d like to acknowledge all your losses and heartbreaks because, unless you are very young, you too had to say goodbye to someone you loved. I am very sorry for all your losses.
Second, I promise I’ll work even harder to help you keep your dog healthy and happy for many years to come. I’d give anything to have a few more years with Skai and I know that is what you are looking for too.
All I can say is make sure you make space to spend as much time as possible with your dog, family and friends. Everything else is replaceable, but the beautiful moments and memories are not.
With much gratitude,
PS: I hope you will like this “Down Dog around the World with Skai” video as much as I enjoyed making it. A great way to spend time with my friend… All I can say, take pictures and videos of your dog, there are never too many. We are also planning to have a contest for your dog's adventures soon.