Yesterday, my dog died.
A series of veterinarians diagnosed Ginger with diabetes, a mass the size of an orange near her spleen, and failing kidneys and liver. That probably explains why she was too feeble to eat even a morsel for a week but luckily, I was home on spring break this past week so although her stomach was empty, her heart wasn’t. Mind you, Ginger was probably the chubbiest little golden lab you’ve ever seen… But it was almost like she had a motive—she was purposely shedding pounds so she could be in tip-top shape for Doggy Heaven. But seriously, there’s no denying she knew her time had come when she was in her room downstairs and mustered up all her strength to come and spend her last moments with us upstairs. That’s what she loved most – the people who loved her (that, and belly rubs… You can’t touch her without her rolling over for a belly rub).
No amount of time was enough time with her, not even the twelve years she spent with us. I don’t know if it’s because I witnessed (+ assisted) her mother give birth to her and her nine siblings, but in my eyes, Ginger was still a puppy, even twelve years later… She was never trained but she was the sweetest thing I’ve ever known.
If you couldn’t tell, I’m one of those people who aren’t exactly familiar with death, and even when I was, I was too young to truly understand anyway. So for me, the passing of my loyal companion is kind of a big deal. But that’s the thing… A loyal dog could never die. Because she’s just that—loyal; with a spirit eternally contagious to all it reached. Like a friend who you could lay in the grass with, cloud-gazing, never exchanging a word and then get up, dust your butt off, and part ways feeling like that was the best conversation you ever had.
Some might say, “It’s just a dog.” Some have said, “She’s in a better place.” & I will continue to say, “She’s my angel.” You see, Ginger was so extraordinary that she knew our family would be sad with her permanent [physical] absence; its like she was looking down on me with my head buried in my lap, trying to force back the tears that the levees of my eyes didn’t stand a chance of holding in… So what did she do? She brought us the best news in we could have received & quite timely, too… Just hours after transitioning from life to death, she brought us the news of a new life to gift us with just as much, if not more joy than she did. My brother and his wife are expecting their first child and I was the first person they called. I’M GONNA BE AN AUNT! 😀
– & Just like that, the circle of life continues –
She brought us a reminder that just because someone leaves the circle of time… Doesn’t mean they leave the circle of love. What many of us seem to ignore but would benefit from acknowledging is the fact that “time” is ULTIMATE currency… “Time” is always the one thing we can never seem to have enough of, yet we don’t treat it like the middle-class treats money. We continue to squander time as if we have an unlimited source. But when a life passes, that means time did, too. “Time is like a book. It has a beginning, middle, and end…” Mike Tyson taught me. But what molests my everlasting nerves is the fact that time is so contradictory; you can’t keep it, but you can spend it, you can’t own it, but you can certainly use it, you can’t put a price on it, but it’s free …It is then that you realize not only do you laugh looking back at the times that made you cry, but you cry your fucking eyes out looking back at the times that made you laugh.
Yesterday, my dog died. And although I lost a friend, I was reminded throughout the day that life is too short (cliché, I know, but sometimes, clichés say it best) and when Father Time decides to slap the shit out of you because you forgot… Don’t try to fight back. Embrace the pain now so you can heal and later embrace the beauty that life divinely provides us, in my case, a niece or nephew. Because the thing about pain… It feels like a swift knife piercing the heart initially. But the healing… The healing feels like the wind against your face when you’re going down a roller coaster ride! We may not be on a roller coaster ride that’s constantly going up, but healing is the next best thing that will give us that same wind against our faces.
So as long as you let your memory serve as software of the soul, may you condition yourself to create the best experience you could possibly live… Because none of this [life] was promised to begin with.
Anyone else have a cool story to share regarding life and death and its cyclical nature? Leave a comment or two below <3