Wednesday, April 14, 2010


I am not good at goodbyes....I can do "see you later" or "so long" or even "via con dios..." but goodbyes are not for me. If you don't believe me I can come up with one or two people who will verify this for you. I find the permanence of "goodbye" to be awful and terrible. Even reading the title of this posting reminds me of the last time I read that word in a subject heading and its enough to bring tears. The funny thing though...the last two years have given me ample opportunity to practice getting used to saying "goodbye"...maybe this is why.

So...I find that I need to get ready to say goodbye to Joey, my best and truest friend...We have been together for more than fifteen years. Through every joy and every sorrow, through most of my marriage, the birth of my children, and during my life as a single man, Joey has been there with me to share in the adventure. He has been with me through several relationships and he has seen me find and then lose love. During these fifteen years I have spent more time with him than I have with any other person. And there is only one other person with whom I had a bond that is closer than the one I have with Joey. Yes...I consider Joey to be a person and why not? He has the attributes of personhood; self awareness, intelligence, empathy, and the capacity for love.

I had come to rely heavily on his company, his devotion, and his love. He was waiting for me when I got home from the hospital last month and after the first two days at home, he, along with my cat, were my company during my recovery. There were some very dark times last year when Joey was the only reason why I got out of bed. Accurately or not...there were times when it felt like he and Spot were all I had.

When I think of Joey a number of images come to, his dashing around the woods surrounding the Chestnut Hill Reservoir, out of control, a playful hazard to dog and owner alike. Another, his following me around in my new apartment on the first night away from my kids. Still yet another is of Joey eagerly sniffing around our park in New Bedford...wandering off far enough to demonstrate his independence but always keeping me in sight. And finally, Joey with me at home, asleep on his bed....

So...with old age finally catching up to my friend and his puppy spirit starting to wane...its time that we say goodbye and part ways. My friend needs me to know when the time is right to let him go and to have the courage to do so. After all...I am all he has.


  1. Aw Tom! Sending you huge hugs. May the memories you have of darling Joey bring you much comfort. HSM

  2. My heart goes out for you. I know how hard losing a beloved family member can be. Keep those good images in your mind. You have my deepest sympathy.

  3. I'm so sorry you're losing Joey.

  4. What a hard time for you Tom ... saying goodbye is never easy and I don't envy you. Take care.