Someday I’ll wish upon a star
and wake up where the clouds
are far behind me
— the prophet yip harburg
You’re standing on the edge, looking out. Why are you only now discovering this place?
There’s a whole new world out there, just one step away.
Eighteen years seems like only yesterday, even if in dog years you’re 126. Maybe you’re not a dog after all.
You’re ready to make the leap, but you worry about the people who won’t be going with you. Maybe they’ve learned the lesson you tried to teach them: Enjoy every can of pricey cat foot, except for maybe that chicken flavor. That stuff was creepy.
Does heaven have ice cream? Will your mom (who, yes, was a dog) be waiting? Will there be birds? You love birds.
In the end, it doesn’t really matter. The edge is there, calling you. “There’s a part of me that thinks perhaps we go on existing in a place even after we’ve left it,” the prophet Colum McCann said. And you know it’s true.
You’ll always be with them, wherever they go, a furry memory that will never age. They’ll cry and laugh and absent-mindedly reach out to pet you in your cubby. You’ll live on in every car trip and ice cream bowl, happily ever after.
You realize their hearts will be broken, but you know they will take care of each other. They weren’t so bad, even if they were always poking you to see if you were sleeping. Maybe eventually you’ll all meet up again.
But for now, it’s time.
You look out past the edge. One little step.
And then you take it.
You wake up where the clouds are far behind you.
And it turns out the bridge really IS a rainbow.
And yes, there are birds …