The past few weeks I have been recovering from our beloved dog's passing on June 29th, 2014. I had kept a journal about the days prior to her passing because I was so comforted at God's bending down toward me, embracing me and giving me love and direction through this difficult journey that I had to write it down. And as a tribute to Elle and to the help God gave me, I wanted to blog a little about what my experience was like.
God is my Father. Jesus is my Savior. Our Lady is my Mom. I'm on a journey through a thick forest, keeping on the path with a constant ear toward the sky.
I subscribe to "Magnificat" which is a monthly publication of the Mass Readings. God frequently speaks to me through scripture and spiritual works written by others.
May 28, 2014
God cared that my dog was dying. He cared that my heart was broken. I felt Him close by as the Lord is close to the brokenhearted. During struggles, God speaks and tends to His children in special ways to protect and guide, to comfort and reassure and ultimately to strengthen the bond between Father and child.
The Lord sent me to comfort all who mourn.
Wondering the purpose of Elle's suffering and why it was permitted.
My word shall not return to me void but shall do My will, achieving the end for which I sent it.
She gave us so much love and laughter, she brought tenderness and compassion to our marriage and to our home. She gave us purpose and helped us to learn self-forgetfulness.
In the May issue of the publication "Magnificat", page 388, Saint Hedwig said "Yet every sorrow was folded into prayer."
I feel every sorrow should allow us to grow closer to God and to give purpose to our loss thereby uncovering the truth of the loss and turning it into spiritual gain.
Saint Hedwig further said, "Our lives are His; our will is whatever He is pleased to ordain, whether our death or that of our friends."
Merciful Father, through the intercession of St. Hedwig, grant us total trust in Your Holy Will. _Magnificat
Beasts wild and tame, Praise the Lord! Psalm 148
God gave this little dog to us as a gift.
Rather it is He Who gives to everyone life and breath and everything. Acts 17:24-25
Page 391 Magnificat May 2014 issue:
O God, Creator and Redeemer, You are the Author of being and of life. Inspire in us a spirit of praise, that we may give you glory in everything we think, say and do, through Jesus Christ Our Lord. Amen
I pray that my grief for Elle gives glory to God. We need the Spirit of Truth to guide our rebellious human spirits.
Trying to remember: HE COMES TO THE DOCILE.
Early in the morning during barn chores I wondered about something God had told me a few years ago. I had asked Him why He would allow me to love my horse so much if only to have her die and vanish someday, like a common soap bubble. Would God use a living creature for all it's worth and then......pfffffft!?!
He assured me, with these words received as an inner locution:
"I take nothing from you".
I continued to ponder if that meant what I originally thought was that all animals He created go to Heaven when they die. But now, a new thought entered my grieving mind: He takes nothing from me because I never had anything to take, it was always His to do as He wanted. Had I just thought I had been given something? I began to feel frustrated, but based on experiences of lessons learned, I knew to put it on hold until God decided, if ever, to address the subject further with me.
Later as I read the devotions in the Magnificat for the day this scripture was given:
Everything that the Father has is mine, for this reason I told you that He will take from what is mine and declare it to you. John 16: 12-15
Again, I am humbled by His everlasting arm and marvel at how compassionate and caring He is towards His children.
Perhaps you will ask how can I imitate Jesus as He is God and I am misery? by the Spirit that dwells in you, you can acheive holiness. As God's child. An heir to the Kingdom by the Savior's gifts. (Magnificat).
The look in her eyes says goodbye and I love you. Her eyes indicate her resolve to accept that she is dying. A sadness and serious attempt to connect to me before she goes. Sadness because she must go, but seriousness because she wants me to remember how much she loves me as this will have to last until we meet again in Heaven.
I am nauseated with sorrow. Everything hurts ten times more under the roof of grief. She feels like she is full of sawdust, but it is cancerous tumors and the hardening of her flesh and organs. This all seems like a nightmare.
Everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected when received with thanksgiving, for it is made holy by the invocation of God in prayer. Timothy 4:4
"cherries are small, but as soon as you have a ripe one you immediately realize how much goodness can be contained in something so small" _Fr. Sullivan
SOMETIMES THE SMALLEST THINGS TAKE UP THE MOST ROOM IN OUR HEARTS.
June 29, 2014 We had to have Elle put to sleep. She died in my arms. My husband and I sobbed and spent the rest of the day walking around sniffling and trying to be strong for each other. I spent a lot of time in the barn hugging my horses. They seemed to understand.
In the weeks that followed I've had a tooth extraction, a sinus infection and several bad colds. I must have gone through a stack of tissues 10 feet high. I've found myself talking to toads, tree frogs, the neighbor's dogs, bugs and the like as if they were my very own babies.
It's been quite a summer and the only place I really find a break from my grief is on the lake. Which is a first for me.
My husband bought me a kayak and I've been spending time out on the lake. I would have never guessed this would come about, but out there on the lake, I feel a sense of space and calm and for that I am grateful. The exercise has helped with my depression tremendously!