The struggle was real.

Back when we used to send Christmas cards lol

I don’t remember what friend Chris visited that had a dog but all I know is, he suddenly wanted one. He and his closest friend knew I’d be the one to give in and get a dog. Every day turned into questions of what kind, where we would get one from and whether we could put that into our budget. Of course the answer to the last question was “no” but as his mother, I always figured out a way.

The day we picked up Max was almost his last day. When he was handed off to us, he jumped and I accidentally let go of his leash. Max ran across four lanes of traffic and stopped before second guessing his escape. He looked back at us and navigated his way back to safety. Maybe in that moment, he knew he was destined to be a part of the Lampkins’ family. Maybe in that moment, he saw his future of playing on soccer fields, being chased by Chris and his friends, moving from home to home, spending weekends with his Pup-parents (grandparents), and eventually settling with his pup-parents where his last days would certainly be his best days.

We got Max in 2005. 2005. An abused, abandoned, beautiful companion. Max was half Jack Russell, half Labrador Retriever. He was so fast and so white that Chris and his friend Chase had initially named him “Snowball.”

Instead, Max was a part of the Lampkins’ family for 13 years. 13 years to love something that was bigger than ourselves. A dog that couldn’t talk to us but could force us to talk to each other. A dog that wasn’t aware of the struggle that he was brought into but who ended his life far from a struggle. With his Pup-parents, he had everything. Pillows everywhere, food, attention and time.

The last few months were tough but we were prepared for today. In March, we were told Max only had a few days left. Perhaps in that moment of almost running away that day in 2015, Max realized he had already fought so much that now he wanted to LIVE. That he did. Until his last day when nothing else worked on him.

No more struggle Max, rest our love.

Special thanks to my parents for taking care of Max when our struggle became too much. Thank you for loving him as you do us. Chris and I are forever grateful. ❤️


* Like Max, none of us know our last day so LIVE as if you’ll live forever.