Bears By Me

Pets Who Have Passed

Over the years many pets have lived their lives here with us. We have had mice, rats, geckos,iguanas and rabbits to mention but a few. It doesn't matter how small they are they all manage to leave their mark on our lives. This is a piece of writing which really sums up pet ownership for me 

 For anyone who has ever owned and loved an animal...

 The Journey
 by Crystal Ward Kent

 When you bring a pet into your life, you begin a journey - a
 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,
 yourself, and most of all, about love. You will come away changed
forever, for one soul cannot touch another without leaving its

 Along the way, you will learn much about savoring life's simple
pleasures -jumping in leaves, snoozing in the sun, the joys of
 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
 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

Too many times we hike on automatic pilot, our goal being to
 the trail rather than enjoy the journey. We miss the details - the
 colorful mushrooms on the rotting log, the honeycomb in the old
 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
 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
 that is full of surprises, that each cycle of the seasons bring
 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
the flick and flash of fireflies through the dark. You will stop
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
 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
 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
 toys, bounce little rubber balls till your eyes cross, and even
 around the house trailing your bathrobe tie - with a cat in hot
 - all in the name of love.

 Your house will become muddier and hairier. You will wear less
clothing and buy more lint rollers. You may find dog biscuits in
 pocket or purse, and feel the need to explain that an old plastic
 shopping bag adorns your living room rug because your cat loves
 crinkly sound.
 You will learn the true measure of love - the steadfast, undying
 that says, "It doesn't matter where we are or what we do, or how
 treats us as long as we are together." Respect this always. It is
 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
 feel ashamed. Such joy and love at my presence. She saw not some
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
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
And you will have to find the strength and love to let them go. A
 time on earth is far too short - especially for those that love
them. We
borrow them, really, just for awhile, 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
 and sleeping in the sun. The young pup of boundless energy wakes
 stiff and lame, the muzzle now gray. Deep down we somehow always
 that this journey would end. We knew that if we gave our hearts
 would be broken.

 But give them we must for it is all they ask in return. When the
 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.
"Godspeed, good friend," we say, until our journey comes full
circle and
our paths cross again.


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