In answer to one of my most-heard questions, I say, Yes, it IS hard. But...
Read this letter from Alicia, the handler of Leader Dog Vera.
This is why, even though it is a sad day when my puppy returns to Leader Dogs for the Blind for her formal training to become a guide dog, this is why I CAN.
Good morning All.
Today is a very special day for a very special friend. On September 29, 2004, I met this very special friend. Who would know those 7 years later, she would be the light in my step, the inspiration behind my future, and the one who gave me strength to face my fears and reach high for my dreams. If it wasn't for my very special friend, I wouldn't have the college degree I have, I wouldn't have had the strength to reach for my dreams and achieve goals, and most importantly I wouldn't have a heart that is full of love.
My special friend turns 9 years old today, and she truly is one of my very best friends. She is black, her loving warm eyes have made many bad days better, her wiggly black tail has been the center of countless conversations, and boy is it not funny when the "black bullet" bolts the door and is running down the street like a maggot in hot ashes.
Yep, you guessed it! Today is Vera's 9th birthday. Happy birthday to one of the best friends I have and the first four legged partner I had that compelled me to put one foot in front of the other and walk those college halls.
My black bullet isn't much a black bullet any more. She is slowing down and really showing her age, but the love in my heart for her will never, ever slow down. She is the foot prints, and will always be the foot prints, in the sand walking next to me on a rainy day, she will be walking next to me on the proudest days of my life, and she will be waiting for me on the other side of the rainbow bridge after I grow old and it is my turn to go.
Thank you Leader Dog for putting Vera in my life and thank you for the independence she has given me. Vera, as well as Baci, truly is the most precious gifts I have ever had and it is my pleasure to honor her on her very special day.
Vera has already gotten an extra cup of dog food in her bowl and will be getting a frosty paw treat and new toy this afternoon. It is not enough for the joy she has given me over the past 7 years, but I know those warm, loving , brown eyes won't look at me with puppy dog eyes today. They will be looking at me with gratitude for the extra pets, the extra love, if that is possible, and the new toy she will receive.
If you have read this far, thank you for reading my tribute to the finest black labby every born, Vera. She is the step in my step and the motivation behind every new milestone I successfully complete.
Alicia, LD Baci and Vera, CGC, The birthday girl.
Thank YOU, Alicia, for sharing your story!
|FLD Scout, my 4th Future Leader Dog puppy. She has a long way to go!|