It’s been four weeks since Henry’s passing. I know I should put it behind me and muddle on, and sometimes I do.
But last night I dreamt of Henry and in my dream I heard his bark. It is a bark I recognize anywhere, and it was coming from somewhere in the house. Desperately, I set off to find him. He’s here!
“Henry,” I called out, hoping he’d run to me. But the barking continued as I searched every room upstairs and then ran down towards the kitchen. When I reached the bottom stair, he barked again.
Henry, buddy. Where are you??”
The sound was coming from within the garage! I swung open the door to the garage, and in the darkness I could make out Henry. He was there, along with several other dogs of all sizes and breeds. Though only Henry was barking. The others simply stared back, confused.
Henry!” I called with outstretched arms. “Come over here, buddy!”
Henry’s tail wagged as he began to move in my direction, and as he did, I couldn’t help but think how wrong the vet had been about his health. He looked fine, just fine. To my relief, he was okay!
I crouched and held out my arms to welcome Henry into my arms. How much I’d missed him! To hold him once more and to prove the vet wrong absolutely thrilled me.
“Come Henry. Come here, boy,” I beckoned.
The anticipation of holding him once again gave me joy. I shut my eyes knowing I’d be hugging him soon, and I was ready to sink my head into his thick furry coat and take in his scent.
“Henry!” I couldn’t wait another second.
I opened my eyes and saw nothing. My arms, empty and broken. And that’s when it hit me. Henry, along with all the other dogs I saw in the garage with him, are all gone. In fact, they were never there.
I know he’s gone and not coming back. The thought saddens me, true, but there’s nothing more to be said about it.