I picked up my baby Sammy a little over two years ago in Petco. She was the only rat to hop up and say hello to me when I walked up to the cage. I knew instantly she was the one I wanted to take home, and I did. From that day forth, she was unlike any rat I’d ever met. She learned tricks, she slept like a dog (upside down), and she never left my side, not even for a minute. She ended up even sleeping on my bed with me most nights, because she was so well-trained that I knew she wasn’t going anywhere. She was spoiled rotten. Her favorite treats were blueberries, and yogurt dipped treats. Whenever I would pet her, I’d hear the familiar crunch crunch crunch and see that adorable eye-boggling that told me, yes, she was happy, she was content. For years she went on like this, being the highlight of my life each and everyday. Never once abandoning me, never once letting me down. But, this morning I woke, and despite her being active last night, I had a terrible feeling. I lifted up the blanket she sleeps under and she was gone. Peacefully, in her sleep, but gone. I don’t know how or why I should go on without her, but I know she would want me to be happy. I know she’s still here, in spirit, crunching and hopping around. And I know that she will live in my heart from now until the end of time.