The other day, I stopped into the vet’s office to pick up some medication for Chardonnay. On the counter sat a lit candle and shadow picture of a dog and its human. Underneath the picture, the caption read, When this candle is lit, someone is saying good-bye to their pet. The office atmosphere was somber. Those of us in the office spoke quietly. I stood in front of the picture and candle for a moment, whispered how sorry I was, and bowed my head, silent tears stinging my cheeks. Saying our final good-byes to a beloved pet is never easy, yet my heart was joyful knowing the beloved pet was with its humans while crossing the Rainbow Bridge.
As I drove home, my thoughts turned to 2 Corinthians 1:4, “He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.” (New Living Translation) Whether or not we believe in God, we have all been comforted in times of trouble. Someone has been in our corner cheering us on, wrapping an arm around our shoulders, crying with us, or simply listening. This is God at work, Divine Love reaching out. As we have been comforted, so too, we will comfort others.
In the past nearly three years, we have lost two beloved pets. Now, with Chardonnay’s seizures, we are acutely aware our time with her may be short. My biggest regret in Harley’s loss, aside from not listening to the niggling voice within regarding the negligent groomer, was not being with Harley in her final moments. She died alone. My daughter and I were with Sammy as he breathed his last, our tears falling onto his soft fur. I know he was grateful for our presence, and we were comforted knowing he did not travel to the Rainbow Bridge alone. I pray when each of our fur babies leaves, we have the privilege of journeying with them as they cross over into eternity, to comfort them in death as they comforted us in life.
No one walks life’s journey alone. We are all connected; connected to one another, connected to all of creation, connected to Divine Love. As we have been comforted, we comfort others…..