My late husband decided to write a book over 20 years ago. He was battling Leukemia and knew he would be in the hospital for weeks at a time and thought it would be a nice distraction. He wanted to tell the story of how a steadfastly one dog family ended up with 6 dogs. I would come into his hospital room and find him writing on his computer or taking notes in a notebook, but he seldom showed me what he was writing. I would see him smile from time to time as he wrote, or he would lean over to make a comment or two in his notebook… a memory, something he didn’t want to forget to add to his book. I really didn’t know what to expect, but I was happy to know that he was enjoying writing and remembering his times with his precious dogs. When it became clear that his time on this earth was coming to an end, he asked me if I would finish his book. I said I would, but many years went by before I found the strength and courage. Then I began to read his words and was touched by what he wrote about our lives and our dogs. I laughed. I cried. And, I knew I needed to finish the story he started. All our dogs were young when he died and they connected me to Gary in amazing ways. All but one of the dogs lived long lives and each had its story to tell. I knew I needed to finish their story. The book tells how Bayley, Spirit, Casper, Neeka, Ichabod, and Sierra came to be part of our household and how we became involved in the wonderful sport of skijoring. It begins in Gary’s words and finishes in mine. Bayley was the kind boss of the crew and the one that always started the dogs singing together, Spirit was the sage, Casper was the serious-minded professor and a heck of a good Frisbee dog, Neeka was the clown, Ichabod was the escape artist, and Sierra gave the best hugs any dog could give. It also seems important to mention that our Granddaughter, Lauren Feil, did the amazing cover art for the book, something that I know Gary would have loved, as I did.
About Betsy Waterman (Syracuse, New York Author)
Betsy Waterman is a New York State Licensed psychologist and retired college professor who has never lived her adult life without a dog by her side. For nearly twenty years, she taught graduate level classes to school psychologists and school counselors-in-training and maintained a small private counseling practice in her home. While this book moves into an entirely different genre for her, she has co-edited and co-written other professional books and given scores of presentations at local, state, national, and international levels, including several popular presentations to school and local clubs about sleddogging and skijoring. Even when fully involved in her professional career, her family and the dogs who shared her life were always at the center of all that she did. Since retiring, she has enjoyed improving her photography skills, learning to play the harp, and writing on social media about her crazy smart goldendoodle, Murphy, and their travels. And, did we mention that she really, really loves her chickens? And, of course, her sweet, gentle rescued cat, Mysty.