Today my kids said goodbye to the dog they grew up with, that lived with their dad. They are heartbroken. I am heartbroken for them.
We got a dog last year – Lily. My first one since elementary school. I could (and maybe should) write some posts about my dog experiences since Lily joined the family, but this post is not about Lily. This is about saying goodbye. It is about love.
I once read that what makes it so hard to say goodbye to a beloved pet is that your pet–dog, cat, whatever–was chosen by you at a particular time in your life and represents an era. A time – no matter how long or short – that will never be repeated. It is like losing a family member – something many are experiencing during COVID – with the sadness and grief feeling just the same.
Animals bring so much joy to our lives and their passing leaves a huge void. Although we know our pets will leave, we just can’t prepare ourselves for it. Without your pet, you’re forced to change your routine. Little things trigger sadness that may be overwhelming. You’ll no longer be greeted by a wagging tail every time you walk in the door. Message to my children — remember, you were the reason he loved living!
Thankfully, I know my kids will not be afraid to morn this loss. That’s the awesome thing about this generation – they are not afraid, embarrassed or ashamed of their feelings. They are all over social media!
So, I’m sorry you three. Please remember to take the time to memorize everything. Remember how it felt to hold him close at the end of his life. Remember his excited look when you came in the door. Note the little things you loved about him. And know that the greatest gift you could give him was a gentle transition from this life to the next.
We are only here for a nanosecond … how awesome that part of that was with your sweet dog, Rutt.
XOXO everyone (and love your pet up today!)