As you know, I am an animal lover. It is a trait I largely inherited from my Mother, especially my love for dogs. No one could sympathize with the loss of a pet more than my Mom. In fact, shortly after she was diagnosed, our beloved family dog was diagnosed with Cancer and by the end of that summer ended up passing away in her arms. So, I more than understand how much our beloved pets mean to us and how much of a loss they can be to a family.
Over Thanksgiving weekend my dear friend, Leslie, lost her beloved pup to cancer. I remember when little Abby was diagnosed back in the summer, Leslie said she felt shy about sharing the grief with me since I had so recently lost my Mom. She didn’t want me to think Abby’s devastating diagnosis and the grief it caused was in anyway on the same level as losing my Mother. I appreciated her sentiment, but reminded her that loss is loss. And if you are in jeopardy of losing someone that you love, no matter who or what it is, you still experience grief. Grief is unique to each and every one of us, just as it is unique to every situation we face. I might argue that grief over my Mom will take years longer to process and will always be with me, but that doesn’t make Leslie’s loss any less devastating to her. So, I asked Leslie not to hesitate in sharing her worries and frustrations in caring for her beloved dog on this final journey.
Having known my Mom too, Leslie asked if I thought she would help welcome Abby into Heaven. I assured her that my Mom already had a spot ready for Abby and a great pack she could run with. As part of the grieving process, Leslie held a small gathering of friends to celebrate little Abby’s life. I was asked to share some words about Abby and her wonderful spirit. Below are the words I wrote in support of my dear friends during this time of loss. Please read and think of all your special friends who may be experiencing loss this Holiday season. Please send them an extra prayer and warm thoughts of comfort, no matter what kind of loss they are facing.
“For me, “Abby” is synonymous with “Love”. Pure, innocent, unconditional love. She loved her Flossie chews, her stuffed soccer balls, chasing backyard squirrels, and taking long afternoon naps. She loved car rides, trips to Bloomingdales and walks with Andrew. But Most importantly she loved her Leslie and never wanted to be away from her. As a matter of fact, it was not unusual for Abby to cry and whine whenever Leslie stepped out to run even the quickest of errands.
Abby was with Leslie when she made the big move to New York City, through the stress of graduate school and even participated in Leslie and Andrew’s wedding ceremony serving as an honorary bridesmaid alongside yours truly. So, to say these two are “bonded” is an understatement. In fact, it is a bond that can NEVER be broken. For that is what true love does….it creates bonds so strong that nothing on earth can ever separate you…..not time, not space, not even death. For Love never Fails.
God lent us Abby for just a short time to teach us all lessons of love. I am proud to have known her and want to thank her for being such a source of love, light and joy for my dear friends Leslie and Andrew.
Abby has now fulfilled her promise and God has called her Home. She may No longer walk this earth, but there is no doubt in my mind that she continues to walk with those she loved each and every day. So, the next time you see a squirrel or feel the need for an afternoon nap, may you be reminded that Abby is somewhere close by, shining in God’s everlasting light, sending nothing but Love your way.”