If Rainbow Bridge were a college football team, we would be congratulating ourselves on a fine recruiting class for 2016. Some of the finest mortal dogs who walked the Earth joined our side this year. But this isn’t a football team, and there is no winning here, and those who have joined us have left thousands of broken hearts in their wake.
There have been terrible losses for humans too, beginning with a man who called himself Prince and ending with a woman who played a Princess. There has been a deluge of human tears crossing the river in dark clouds. These tears have watered our gardens making them more spectacular as ever, but, even as I walk amongst these beautiful plants, I know they are the product of sadness.
We Bridge Angels tried our best not to let any dogs pass to the Immortal side We built a great, big, beautiful wall and made the Chihuahuas pay for it. (The bill is still outstanding). But walls don’t work. Pups came over it, under it, and straight through it. All mortal beings are only given so many heartbeats and when they expire we cannot keep anyone out.
That is what I have learned in more than three years at the Bridge. Everyone is going to join us at some time. Mortals can fight it for as long as possible, and even postpone it, but the day will come.
I have gone more than three years without being able to feel my mom’s soft fingers rubbing my ears, getting those special belly rubs, even getting baths, which I hated, but now I would give anything for one of them. Three and a half years at Rainbow Bridge: That is a quarter of the time I spent as a mortal dog. Three more quarters and I will be gone longer than I was there.
My advice to you humans is to savor every moment you have with those you love. If you are holding grievances against a loved one try to mend it. When you have a chance to tell a loved one that love them, do it. Make time for love every day, because your money is never going to the Bridge one day. But your loved one is.
I do hope our incoming class for 2017 is few and far between. My New Year’s wish is that I could give you all an extra year of heartbeats.
But if a song ends I will be here to welcome the departed and try to bring comfort to the broken hearted.