In honor of National Dog Day today, I thought I would write a letter to my beautiful dog, Gracie. Don’t worry–I will read this aloud to her. She has excellent language comprehension skills. She is the puppy daughter of a speech-language pathologist after all.
To my Gracie Girl,
I have dreamed about having a dog my entire life. I almost got one for my 12th birthday, but I failed to win out in the great trampoline or puppy debate. That is a story for another time, however. Finally, when I was 27 years old I started looking online for puppies without informing your dad. I saw your sweet face and instantly knew you were the perfect dog for us. I took your dad on a walk around the block and tried to convince him that we needed a puppy. Towards the end of the walk, he agreed to the idea and I gave him the biggest, most giant hug. I contacted the breeder and she said we could have you in one week. It was the longest week of my life as I was anxiously awaiting to meet you, sweet girl.
Your dad and I discussed names for you that week. I wanted to name you Chloe, Haddie, or Lacy. Your dad had suggested Grace. I told him that name was not dog-ish enough, and together we decided on Gracie. From that moment on, I believe you were destined to be our saving Grace. Our amazing Grace.
On that next Friday after work, your dad and I drove to Illinois to bring you home. When we arrived, you had just been given a bath and were running around like crazy. You were the cutest, most fluffy puppy I had ever seen. I do believe in love at first sight–because Gracie girl I fell in love with you as soon as I saw you. Your dad did too. His eyes lit up and his smile widened whenever you were around him. He was so proud of and protective over you. Your dad was also the one who trained you primarily. He made you into the sweet, loving, good girl you are today. I was the pushover puppy parent–or as I would often remind your dad, the love provider.
I want to thank you, my dear Gracie girl. I truly believe you saved your daddy the last three years of his life–and now you have saved me. You have no idea how much you have meant to me; how much I have needed you these past seven months. You are my light. You are my angel. You are one of many reasons I choose to move forward in my life.
Thank you for being my constant companion, my best and loyal friend. Thank you for making me laugh and smile on the most difficult of days. Thank you for allowing me to lean on you when I lack strength. Thank you for all the kisses, hugs, and snuggles I receive each and every day.
And most of all, thank you for your unconditional love–the love only a dog seems truly capable of.
I will love you always and forever, my sweet, saving Gracie.