Our Sweet Harley Girl
by Molly Logan Anderson
Our hearts are broken.
Yesterday, unexpectedly, we lost our sweet Harley girl. After nearly twelve years of her countless blessings in our lives, something bigger and stronger than us all swept in and insisted on taking her away.
For Mike and me, the grief is palpable, like a magnet connecting us as soon as we see the other. For the kids, it’s different for each, but hardest on Logan, who just feels so sad. Moments ago, she and Riley woke at 6 am because they were sure they heard Harley’s collar. It was just Mike’s keys.
Throughout our time with this most perfect of companions, we witnessed so many people shy away from her because of her size and looks. So many wondered why we’d bring a rottweiler mix into our lives. Like others in her breed, she was not ever dangerous, just strong and sweet and loving and funny. She liked every animal or person she ever met and only wanted to please. So, we saw so many people learn about her and her breed and realize that she only had goodness to offer us all.
She loved us and our children endlessly. She turned to putty in your hands with the slightest pat. She had patience beyond imagination; patience with the kids, patience with our time away, patience waiting for Mike or me to make time for her.
She loved snow and swimming and rawhide bones. She snored – loudly! She still, at almost twelve, cocked her head like a puppy when we said things like “eat” or “outside” or “ride” or “walk.” When she was younger, she talked to us, but stopped when the kids came on the scene, maybe realizing she was outnumbered. She was graceful and gentle and beautiful and smart like nobody’s business. She woke us at 4 each morning, so today we we're up and waiting. She isn’t here.
I know that many religions don’t believe that animals have souls and that they won’t go to heaven. That is not my belief. If I’m going to heaven, which I fully intend to do, it won’t be MY heaven if Harley isn’t there. As a matter of fact, I know she already is. She’s flying across open fields with Maggie, meeting up with long lost Florida pals from the good old days and most of all, not in any pain at all.
How we love our Harley girl. How hard it is to let her go. For all of you who showed her a little sumpin-sumpin with a pet or a kind word, thanks. For those of you who loved her, she felt it and she loved you back. She is missed beyond words.
Goodbye sweet girl.