I didn't like you at first.
You were young and misbehaved, and you never complimented my shoes. Despite how nice you were to me, so genuinely nice, something about you rubbed me the wrong way. You constantly needed attention even though everyone always ogled over you.
"She's adorable!" They would coo. "One of a kind!"
You never listened. It was frustrating trying to make you do one thing while you insisted on doing another. It was like your attention span was the size of a carrot. If I had 10 carrots, you would eat them all without asking or sharing. I just didn't like you very much.
But then, something changed.
I grew up. You grew up. We grew up together. You were always so happy and kind. You learned when to do certain things and when to not do others. You knew when something was wrong with me and tried to help the best you could without words. You still constantly needed attention, but I wanted to give it to you. Whenever I came home from college, you were so excited to see me - your love radiated throughout the whole house.
One time, you got cancer.
A mass cell tumor on your leg. You had surgery and fought it. You beat that cancer. You beat it good. I was so scared, but you didn't think a thing of it. You were so important to me in that moment. You taught me to be brave.
One time, you tore your ACL.
On your other leg. You had another surgery to fix it. You limped around for a bit, always with a big smile on your face. A true optimist, you were. My empathy and love surged for you. I didn't want you to hurt because I loved you. I finally loved you.
Another time, you got cancer.
Cancer is the most selfish disease and it decided to come back, manifesting itself in the form of a tumor near your belly. It was all so fast - one day you were your normal, happy self, the next you were wheezing and coughing so much. A few days after that, blood showed up in those coughs. You were up all night one night;
You died just over a week ago, Sydney, and I miss you so much.
I miss seeing your tail do a helicopter spin as you leaped and bounded down the stairs.
I miss being barked at for play-fighting with my brother (you were protecting me).
I miss how excited you were every time someone got home.
I miss your lovely smile and constantly wagging tail.
I miss telling you not to chase your tail because it made you look like a goon.
I miss my Sydney Bean, my big girl, my best dog ever.
Thank goodness all dogs go to Heaven.
Rest in Peace, Big Girl. <3