September 14th 2008 3:46 pm
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No matter how long its been, I still miss your sweetness.
A Time to Remember
By John Quealy
They come into our lives for such a short time
A time we wouldn't trade not even for a dime
Then before you know it the years have flown by
And then all of the sudden we're saying good-bye
It wasn't that long ago we said our good-byes
We held on to you tight as you closed your eyes
Your spirit has flown home on the wings of a dove
Into God's loving arm's; in heaven above
Over the days we've shed many tears
But the memories we have will live on for years
We feel your presence and we know that your near
You're keeping us safe and calming our fear
We think about memories from years past
When you were young and strong and ran so fast
We remember all the great times that we all had
How you always made us happy never made us mad
They were the best and happiest years we had
We'll always look back on them and never be sad
We look forward to the time we'll be together again
And we thank the Lord for such a great friend
Now you run and play up in Heaven above
Cradled in God's arms covered with his love
Playing by the Bridge waiting for the day
We come down thru the meadow to the bridge to stay
The love that you showed us we'll never forget
Because to us you're one very special pet
You're like a star in the dark of night
Always watching over us with the Lord's light
So now we take time to remember our best friend
Who will always be with us even to the end
We'll always remember you the way you were
One big lovable huggable pile of fur
October 10th 2007 10:12 am
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We love our animals so much, and it's so hard to let them go. The loss of any beloved pet has a drastic impact on our lives and is equal to or worse than that of losing a human family member. Losing a little one causes extreme anguish and sorrow. This is a natural reaction when you lose a loved one, whether human or animal; and the stages of mourning are the same. Grievers feel the identical shock and denial, anger and guilt, sorrow and depression.
Yes, it is okay to cry! It's okay to grieve over your loss. You have the right to grieve because you've lost a loyal companion and a best friend. You've lost a family member who gave you unconditional love and acceptance. You've lost the one who loved you no matter what you did or didn't do.
Anger and guilt are natural, but you must allow yourself to go through all the reaction stages of death: denial & disbelief, anger, guilt, depression, and finally, acceptance. There is no order to these stages. Be sure each person in the family, including children, is allowed to share their grief.
If it bothers you to see your pet's belongings, you might want to put them out of sight so you are not constantly reminded of your loss. After a while, when you are feeling stronger, you can bring them out again.
To help yourself overcome the sorrow and grief you are feeling, have some kind of burial ceremony to say goodbye to your dear angel. If you have other pets, they are most likely grieving also. Let them be a part of it all. Write a eulogy to say how much you loved your little one and tell about all the good times and happiness you shared. Talk about your pain and loss to someone else who will understand what you are going through. Other people who have also lost a pet are the ones most likely to offer you their comfort and support because they know the horrible pain it causes. In times when the pain feels unbearable, focus on all the good memories. Use pictures and some of your little one's favorite belongings to create a special remembrance. Use your angel's tags as a necklace, or put them on a key chain. Go for a walk or call a friend on the telephone to fill the time you usually spent with your precious one. Do something you think your sweet baby would like for you to be doing at this moment. Look through the pictures you have of your darling and remember all the love and happy times you shared. Remember, too, that our little loves are waiting for us at Rainbow Bridge.
After the tears have dried and you are feeling somewhat normal again, consider getting another pet. Nothing can ever replace the precious little life you've lost, but another pet can become a dear friend to share your love and your life. Our cherished ones give so much love and happiness to us in their lifetimes that I feel we are obligated to pass that love on to other animals who desperately need homes. Who knows? One of those furry little babies might just fill a small part of the huge hole in your heart.
Our pets are a gift from heaven, but we don't get to keep them nearly long enough!
July 25th 2007 3:14 pm
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When you bring a pet into your life, you begin a journey -- a journey that will bring you more love and devotion than you have ever known, yet also test your strength and courage.
If you allow, the journey will teach you many things, about life, about yourself, and most of all, about love. You will come away changed forever, for one soul cannot touch another without leaving its mark.
Along the way, you will learn much about savoring life's simple pleasures -- jumping in leaves, snoozing in the sun, the joys of puddles, and even the satisfaction of a good scratch behind the ears.
If you spend much time outside, you will be taught how to truly experience every element, for no rock, leaf, or log will go unexamined, no rustling bush will be overlooked, and even the very air will be inhaled, pondered, and noted as being full of valuable information. Your pace may be slower -- except when heading home to the food dish -- but you will become a better naturalist, having been taught by an expert in the field.
Too many times we hike on automatic pilot, our goal being to complete the trail rather than enjoy the journey. We miss the details -- the colorful mushrooms on the rotting log, the honeycomb in the old maple snag, the hawk feather caught on a twig. Once we walk as a dog does, we discover a whole new world. We stop; we browse the landscape, we kick over leaves, peek in tree holes, look up, down, all around. And we learn what any dog knows: that nature has created a marvelously complex world that is full of surprises, that each cycle of the seasons bring ever changing wonders, each day an essence all its own.
Even from indoors you will find yourself more attuned to the world around you. You will find yourself watching summer insects collecting on a screen. (How bizarre they are! How many kinds there are!), or noting the flick and flash of fireflies through the dark. You will stop to observe the swirling dance of windblown leaves, or sniff the air after a rain. It does not matter that there is no objective in this; the point is in the doing, in not letting life's most important details slip by.
You will find yourself doing silly things that your pet-less friends might not understand: spending thirty minutes in the grocery aisle looking for the cat food brand your feline must have, buying dog birthday treats, or driving around the block an extra time because your pet enjoys the ride. You will roll in the snow, wrestle with chewie toys, bounce little rubber balls till your eyes cross, and even run around the house trailing your bathrobe tie -- with a cat in hot pursuit -- all in the name of love.
Your house will become muddier and hairier. You will wear less dark clothing and buy more lint rollers. You may find dog biscuits in your pocket or purse, and feel the need to explain that an old plastic shopping bag adorns your living room rug because your cat loves the crinkly sound.
You will learn the true measure of love -- the steadfast, undying kind that says, "It doesn't matter where we are or what we do, or how life treats us as long as we are together." Respect this always. It is the most precious gift any living soul can give another. You will not find it often among the human race.
And you will learn humility. The look in my dog's eyes often made me feel ashamed. Such joy and love at my presence. She saw not some flawed human who could be cross and stubborn, moody or rude, but only her wonderful companion. Or maybe she saw those things and dismissed them as mere human foibles, not worth considering, and so chose to love me anyway.
If you pay attention and learn well, when the journey is done, you will be not just a better person, but the person your pet always knew you to be -- the one they were proud to call beloved friend.
I must caution you that this journey is not without pain. Like all paths of true love, the pain is part of loving. For as surely as the sun sets, one day your dear animal companion will follow a trail you cannot yet go down.
And you will have to find the strength and love to let them go. A pet's time on earth is far too short -- especially for those that love them. We borrow them, really, just for a while, and during these brief years they are generous enough to give us all their love, every inch of their spirit and heart, until one day there is nothing left.
The cat that only yesterday was a kitten is all too soon old and frail and sleeping in the sun. The young pup of boundless energy wakes up stiff and lame, the muzzle now gray. Deep down we somehow always knew that this journey would end. We knew that if we gave our hearts they would be broken.
But give them we must for it is all they ask in return. When the time comes and the road curves ahead to a place we cannot see, we give one final gift and let them run on ahead -- young and whole once more. "God speed, good friend," we say, until our journey comes full circle and our paths cross again.
Copyright © Crystal Ward Kent