A little grief-coping journalling--gave me comfort, hope it does you as well
This isn't meant to be morose or depressing, because I am feeling neither of those. It's me thinking about those I've lost, and what the reunion may be like. I found comfort in writing it, and thought some the COTHers--who helped me in Horse Care through the heart-shattering process of losing my beloved mare, then later over in The Menagerie through losing both my adored cat and dog, may find comfort in it as well from losses you have endured.
There are some photos linked at the bottom of this same post in my blog of some memorials we made to honor those three animals.
----------------------------- Forgive the glurginess of this, but in the past 18 months, we have had to put down three beloved animals: our mare Ferrana broke my heart in September 2011, Inigo, my beloved cat, in August 2012, and just this past March, our adopted sweetheart dog Ginger. This followed losing our sweet, but very sick by the end, sheltie Angel who we said our final goodbye to in 2008.
Add to that losing my father in 2009, after losing my last grandparent in 2007 (the others passed in 2000 and 2003) and well, sometimes I think about them all and wonder what the reunion would be like. Usually when I'm missing them so. Like now, I suppose.
The light is bright, but not blinding; warm, but not hot. Time no longer flows in a singular path like a river, but rather ebbs and flows and rolls and envelopes like an ocean.
Voices. Scents. Senses. Knowings.
Then...then. Squeaking sounds, half mew half grunt. Princess, that old sweet love of a cat, my beloved companion from age 4 to 21, my nursemaid and therapist, trots in eagerly and wishes only to be in my arms, as she always, always had been. There is competition. Inigo, my companion of 14 years and first pet as an adult on my own, is demanding to share my arms. Lady is more content to howl her discontent at having to share anything and sits at my feet in her Egyptian statue pose, demanding the respect of her regal roots.
But if she could roll her eyes, she would, as bounding out of the light come two vivacious dogs. Angel, freed of her badly damaged elbow and kidney disease, bounds about, tail flagging, tongue wagging in a tricolor blur of effervescence. Ginger, freed of her badly damaged hips and cancer-ridden body, bounds along beside her, the two shepherding breeds happy to herd each other in bouncing laughter.
I sit, Princess and Inigo in my lap, Lady at my side, as Angel bounds around me before rolling over on her back next to me, showing off that fluffy white belly and begging for rubs. Ginger moans and barks and whines her exuberance before also rolling on her back to plead for the same. Princess and Inigo, well aware they are dominant to these silly dogs, do not move. Lady, finding such sloppy raw emotion disgraceful, moves out of view and reach of them at my back.
Then, both dogs' ears perk in the direction of the light. They both look back at me and flash their brilliant doggy smiles, then bound forward before turning back for me, insisting I follow. I rise, setting the cats down. They trot behind me as I go forward.
I hear her first. Her voice penetrates my heart, and joy overflows my soul. Then her hoofbeats. Then her. Ferrana Moniet. Ana.
She is brilliant white with no arthritic hocks, no damaged shoulder, no catastrophically disintegrating tendons...she is whole, she is sound, she is beautiful, she is happy. She canters toward me, her large round eyes and tipped ears locked on me. She slows as she approaches, respecting my space as she carefully approaches as she always has. She whuffles and nickers her greeting before resting her head in my arms, her eyes half closed in contentment. Like our last morning together, I weep into her neck and take great comfort in her fleecy coat and familiar scent. She is ready for new adventures with me now, but first, she alerts ahead and pauses.
They are coming.
Dad is first, hugging his sassy one whose unbridled outspoken individuality always tickled him so, even when it made Mom want to disappear under tables and church pews. Then my grandfathers, my grandmothers, my great-grandmother...all who knew me before saying their final goodbye surround me in familial love, recognition, and celebration.
I am safe, I am welcome, I am swallowed whole by love.
Just beautiful. Made me tear up as well. I feel what you mean about writing something down ... I just had to put my heart dog down, and it was the worst day of my life to date. I had to write a blog about it just to get it OUT. I can't talk about it at all without losing control and blubbering like a baby.
Your story is so nice, I can't fathom living a life of eternity without seeing loved ones and our animals again once we "pass over". It's a beautiful thought. Sorry for your loss.
So beautiful. I love that you imagine your animals will be the first to greet you - because that's truthfully how I see it for me too. And, let's be honest, I'd rather see them more than some of my family that is already there....
“Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby, to be picked up and laid down like a game of Solitaire. It is a grand passion.” ~Emerson