Yesterday I stood by my best friend while he got his wings. Jack was by far the most exceptional animal I've ever known and deserved better than to live in pain from progressive joint disease. He deserved peace and rest, and most importantly, dignity. With that, I'm trying my damn hardest to celebrate what an anomaly of a creature he was.
This may be by far the most difficult and devastating decision I've ever made in my life, but reminiscing about the last 16 years of our remarkable friendship makes it easier to laugh and smile. He touched so many hearts and made such an impression on so many more than just me alone. He taught me accountability, responsibility, patience, humility and honest, unconditional love. Jack saved my life when I was a teenager acting like a damn fool. He's an enormous part of why I am something today that I can be proud of.
He was a trail horse, gymkhana horse, jumper, ocean swimmer, pack station guide horse and parade horse. And he did it flawlessly. He waited patiently as I painted his entire body for Halloweens or wrapped him like a mummy to keep him clean for a show...which never worked anyway. He really did do anything I asked. It's not that he ever had training, it's not that I was a great rider or even slightly knew what I was doing training him. It really was that we just had such an unbelievable connection.
He makes me scared to death to ever own another horse because he was so amazing. Jack became so dear to my family and friends for so many reasons. Anyone that got to meet him have only positive memories and funny stories. I know I'm biased, but he truly was that incredible and entertaining.
Thank you Jack, for the belt buckles, blue ribbons and newspaper spreads. For standing there when I cried into your fur, for making me laugh until my sides hurt and giving my family friendship therapy that everyone should get to experience from an animal. I promised from the moment you were in my backyard on Christmas morning I would never sell you away, never send you off with anyone that wasn't family. I promised I wouldn't let you hurt and suffer when you got old and that I would stand by your side when it was time to rest your sweet soul. You deserved these promises, and I did my best to fulfill them over the last 16 years of our friendship. It was my job to do right by you, as you only ever did right by me.
I'll make one last promise, and that is when I leave this Earth I’ll find you. You are my heart, I love you with all that I am. I promise I will never, ever, stop looking for you until I find you.