Small broken things. I should have thrown them out years ago I suppose. They graced our tree for years until one frail creature after another took an unexpected tumble to the floor, suffering just enough damage to wound and leave scars, a broken wing, a golden shod foot now missing. My favorite, with her blue scarf, is missing one of her wings, a sad loss to a creature of flight.
Those of you who follow this much-neglected space know that I keep the window sill above my kitchen sink decorated in an ever-changing parade of characters. Now, these three little angels who’ve taken up residence there, give solace, and I haven’t the heart to discard them, imperfect as they are. Somehow, they provide an odd sense of comfort as they faithfully keep watch.
Though wounded, still bearing gifts.
I’ve fought writing this post for far too long, dreading being the bearer of sad news because even though most of you only knew Agatha through my stories, many of you have fallen in love with a small dog you never met. Even though you never felt the velvet of her small muzzle pressed into the palm your hand or stroked her beautiful long ears, for some of you, this will bring pain and I am foolish enough to think that even another small measure of sadness in this poor world is just too too much to bear.
She has been gone now for just over a year. I’ve started it a dozen times only to have my eyes overflow with tears and my throat gripped in such desperate sorrow that further words are impossible. My beautiful beautiful Agatha is gone… There it is, written and the tears flow, my throat aches with the anguish of it even now. I’ve rejected writing those words as if by actually writing them, her loss becomes real, and I cannot shove the grief away any longer with busyness or focusing on puppies or her namesake company.
(Oh, her face is everywhere, sweet Aggie, you’ll never truly be gone). I look back at the posts I’ve tried to write, and they are filled with such anguish they gather dust while I try to put this pain-filled task behind me.
It’s time I got back to living. Though grief that has torn at my very fiber, my Inbox overflows. Calls not returned. My kind-hearted Puppy People, the few who know about Agatha those who rang in the first days after she was gone, I was unable to speak, shocked at the depth of anguish that choked every word. It seemed like the crumbling of the foundation of all my daily routines. Letters neglected and I steel myself to open my neglected laptop and sit down and methodically work through emails that should have been answered days and weeks ago.
Fall has come my favorite season, one that I normally spend hours dragging bits and pieces up from the basement, pumpkins, and mercury glass containers all waiting for golden leaves and glorious autumn mums to fill. Dusty tulips lean forlorn where golden leaved glories should be standing.
I must must must get busy again, work is good medicine. My dear great Aunt Clara knew that and it’s a legacy that I know will help me through these days that still hold healing as well as tears…
This morning while doing up the breakfast dishes I was struck with the thought that His heart breaks for us, and perhaps even the angels who watch over us are broken-hearted with us when sorrow touches our lives. Every prayer was answered for my dear girl. She was her same utterly beautiful self until the end. She did not suffer. John and I were with her when she took her last breath. She was not alone, the last words she heard were ours, and as she crossed into eternity I believe with all my heart that my Father welcomed that small dog that I adored, safely, Home.
With tears oh, the oceans I have cried, I look at the small faces of my little angel trio and am reminded that not even a sparrow falls that He does not notice. When my darling girl left us, I believe He wept too. Our dogs live pitifully short lives, the day comes all too soon that they must leave us.
She was the closest thing to a child that I’ll ever hold on this earth and when she left she took part of me with her. She went to be in Heaven where the two other little ones that I never got to hold also wait for us there.
Oh, dear Puppy People, I must write this, I must finish it, though the pain it might cause makes me hesitate yet again, I cannot heal until I do. She was “only a dog” is what many would say, but not you, I know you will understand.
Goodbye, my darling girl, I can see you waiting faithfully at the gates of Heaven. Your sweet velvet muzzle pressed on those snowy white paws, keeping watch with anticipation, tail ready to wag with JOY at the first glimpse of those you loved so much, finally, finally, coming HOME…