The food and water dish I just can't pick up.
The empty truck that makes me burst into tears as I approach.
The little piles of hair on the floor that I can't sweep up.
The collar I hold onto and carry around like a security blanket, refusing to let go.
Those things, and so many other things pierce my shattered heart. I miss my boy so much. The amount of comments and messages I have received on my blog, on Facebook and twitter, in my email, and on my phone are testament to what an amazing boy my Bailey was. He touched so many lives, and not one person who came in contact with him - in real life or virtually through my blog or Facebook - left without a smile on their face.
Bailey just made life better. For everyone he came in contact with.
Everyone's dog is special. Bailey was supremely special in a way I can't put into words. He and I had a connection that started when he was 4 weeks old and crawled into my lap. I swear, he picked me. Numerous strangers would tell me as they watched Bailey watch me and move where I moved, "That dog sure loves you."
I didn't have to train him to walk with me. He just did it. It was like he knew what John and I wanted him to do, and he just did it with minimal encouragement.
Bailey worked with me in the Allagash when I was a ranger in northern Maine, he went to grad school with me (he was allowed with me in the building), then came with me to work in the woods as a forester. He spent office days under my desk with his chin on my foot, and days in the field running through the woods, never out of sight.
Unless he saw a moose. He had a thing for moose.
When I say we were never apart, I mean it. He has been by my side through every move, every sadness, every joy, and every celebration. He was always there.
So to say it is hard to be without him is an understatement. John and I are never going to be used to him being gone. He gave us the best 10 years of our lives. Now a part of us is missing - it is like walking around without an arm...or more accurately, with a hole in your core.
Thank you everyone for your support and kind words - if I haven't gotten back to you it isn't because I don't appreciate it, I am truly overwhelmed at the volume of response I have gotten - like I said it is a true testament to the wonderful special boy that Bailey was.
In an attempt to focus on the best memories, and maybe heal this hole in my heart just a little - I am going to continue Muttley Monday's for the time being. I am going to be posting some pictures from some of the good times when Bailey was with us, starting with puppy pictures.
Thank you all for your support. I am going to start training again tomorrow - I mentally have not been able to train for the past week because of what was going on with Bailey. I wanted to spend every last second with him that I could, soak in every single thing I could.
I miss you Bailey, Bubba, Bailey Boo, Dubba, Doo Doo, Baby Dog, my sweet Baby Boy - for the rest of my life, I will miss you.