Editor's Note: Hundreds of Ann Landers' loyal readers have requested that newspapers continue to publish her columns. These letters originally appeared in 1999.
Dear Ann Landers: I have had this essay for years and thought you might print it so your readers could enjoy it. — Westminster, Md.
Dear Westminster: Thanks for sending it my way. The dog lovers in my reading audience will appreciate it.
"What Dogs Do for Us"
Keep a night alone from being truly lonely.
Get us outside on beautiful fall days, rainy days and snowy winter days.
Listen to our singing.
Treat us like celebrities when we come home.
Warm up our beds on cold nights.
Make our hearts more vigorous.
Alert us to the arrival of the mail.
Help us live a little longer.
Make us smile.
Agree with everything we say.
Warm our knees with their chins.
Provide a use for old tennis balls.
Signal when a thunderstorm is coming.
Help lower our blood pressure.
Test how fast we can run.
Keep the squirrels from overtaking our yards.
Teach us the meaning of unconditional love.
Dear Ann Landers: March 1 was the second anniversary of my husband's death. We were high school sweethearts in the early '40s, and he served in the Navy in World War II. We were three months away from our 50th anniversary when he died suddenly.
Since then, I have learned to appreciate the pain others have suffered after losing a loved one, especially a spouse. I have been lucky to have a positive attitude because the challenges are endless — loneliness, cooking for one, dealing with everyday problems that you once shared, trying to make a life without him. Thank God for attentive children, friends and the church. Their support is getting me through these sad months.
I hope those who know widows or widowers will invite them for dinner or tea occasionally, or just offer friendship. In this busy world, it is easy to forget those in need. For elders who are lucky enough to still have their spouses — please overlook their faults, and enjoy every minute you have together. — Missing Him in Va.
Dear Missing Him: Thank you for reminding my readers of what's important. Too often we don't appreciate what we have until we lose it.
Do you have questions about sex but no one to talk to? Ann Landers' booklet "Sex and the Teenager" is frank and to the point. To find out more about Ann Landers and read her past columns, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
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