Hello everyone!! Srs here…I know that it has been quite a long time since I have posted anything but I do have plausible excuses. I always say that I keep it real and for those of you who do not know what I mean, come visit me at www.suzanneriggealseidel.blog and find out.
The finality of life for one of our family pets is as debilitating for me, as a human loved one. Those animals that are a part of my daily life, no matter how fleeting the moment may be, become my family, more honestly, they become my four-legged children. If they come to me as babies, I coo them, nurture them, shower them with love and belly rubs. I watch as their tiny little paws grow in conjunction with their legs lengthening, their ears becoming to big for their tiny heads until it finally catches up and they become proportioned with the rest of their body.
I have stroked the face of hundreds of animals as they left this world. Some I had raised from newborn until they grew old, some in my care for several months and some I had only known for a brief moment. I find that the time frame really doesn’t matter to me, the effect is the same, heartbroken and grief stricken. For those that I called my own, a special bond between a mother and her fur baby. Countless conversations we had together, the best listeners on the earth and they never interrupt. Together we have grown, loved, laughed, cried, walked, played, taste tested, tv binged, weekend morning snuggles, doctor visits, and hundreds of other memories that will be forever engraved in my mind.
For those that come into my life in a critical situation unto them I bestow the same love. I feel it instantaneously. We may not have shared years of companionship, countless untold secrets but in that moment as they draw their last breath, I vow that they will know they are loved and they will forever be a part of my life. I stroke their face with such tenderness and breath in their face so that they are not surrounded with clinical smells. I hold those that have been forgotten, abused or discarded and wrap them in my loving arms, I hold them close, so that our heart beats unite and beat as one. I whisper sweet nothings into their ears of ‘what a good boy’ or good girl they were. I promise them no more pain, no more beatings, their bellies will never again feel the pangs of hunger and then I send them home to God, along with a bit of my soul.
The pain is real for me. It consumes me, wrenches my heart and depletes me. I have tried to master the art of saying farewell, keeping my heart intact and just being able to move on with a few tears and a silent prayer but it never happens. I wonder if perhaps the true mastery is in the feeling of it, by truly loving them with all my heart and allowing myself to feel the loss. Each cat, dog, gerbil, hamster, rabbit, bird, hedgehog, iguana, or fish (who knows how many other creatures). I remember each and every one of them and for those that never knew what home or a human parent was, I give them a name. Everyone should have a name.
Perhaps I should have kept a log book of all those who had entered and will enter into my life but for me, I don’t need one, at least not while my mind is in tact. Each one has left a profound mark in my life. It kills me to know the cruelty that the world and some of its humans have on our furry friends but it I feel privileged in being able to be there for those within my reach in their last moments. If I had a dollar, for every time I heard someone say to me, over the last 46 years, ‘you can’t save them all” I would be so very rich and in fact, could probably save pretty freaking many. Of course, they are correct, I can’t save them all but we as a collective could very well make a significant dent. The likelihood of that happening would take a miracle, so until that miracle happens, I am going to save as many as I possibly can and if I only have but a few minutes I will make them the most spectacular moments of their life, no matter what the emotional cost is for me.
Anatole France once said, “Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.”