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« The Great American Bake Sale: A National SOS Benefit | Main | .......paradise »

30 May 2007


Your tribute to Isaac made me cry when I read it last October, and it made me cry again today.

Thanks for sharing this magical place with us, Shuna.

i have handwritten countless letters of condolences whenever someone had died...relatives..friends..parents of friends and tragically children of friends. but i am usually speechless when someone says that their pet had died, i cannot bring myself to say anything except 'i am sorry' and if they are really close to me, i give them a tight hug. fear and insecurity strikes me when i hear about the death of an animal...i dont know if it makes me self-absorbed, but the first thing that hits me is the horrible notion that the animals that i know and love are mortal too. and at that moment, a blackness surrounds and their loss becomes my own. and i grieve the only way i know how..i retreat and become emotionally slack. what perks me up again is the fairy tale i weaved for my sanity..that the animals really didnt die..they are just invisible now and in their invisible state, they cannot feel any pain. the only loser is me, of course..because i cannot enjoy their company anymore.

one time, my friend's dog was at the vet's and they called her to say that she wont live too long. she was a breeding dog and her owners dumped her after she developed some health problems. my friend's mother found her at the shelter and gave her a bowl of water. before you can say 'bow', she jumped onto the backseat of the herself. well..the decision has been made. the human lady has been adopted.

a month after, my friend's mother died unexpectedly. this half deaf dog with fadinng vision and failing health because my friend's self appointed security guard. she'd bark her head off at anyone who entered that house even though she probably couldnt see them. hearing her ferocious bark, you'd never know it came from an old dog(we didnt know her age actually). she was all bark and no bite, actually. she was naughty, nice and threatening, all at once. talk about multiple personalities!

i accompanied my friend to the vets' because i wanted to be with her for moral support when she had to sign the papers to put her to sleep. but she didnt have the time we reached, the dog was gone. i have seen so many dead animals in my life, but watching this magnificent creature on it's side with her lifeless eyes and blood dripping wrapped and kept in a corner broke my heart because o KNEW her like one knows a friend.

my friend and i, both of us clutched each others hand and stood there. i was determined to not lose my composure and i was there to be a source of strength for my friend, afterall. my friend was trying to keep her cool and was distracting herself with the more mundane work of signing papers/finding a place to bury etc.

all deceased animals were taken to a space at the corner of the property. It was right behind what's called the CD room...a place where they house dogs with canine distemper. these dogs have already been sentenced to death. they are just waiting their turn.

at one point, i couldnt bear it anymore and because i didnt want cry in front of my friend, i walked around the building to compose myself. as i was leaning against the wall, ALL the dogs from the CD room threw themselves by the window and started yelping. one of them tried to lick me and another just kept staring at me. maybe they were excited to see someone. i wonder if they feel anything looking at the dead dogs brought behind their room, day in and day out. do they know that it's going to be them next?

i couldnt take it anymore. i started bawling and i just couldnt stop. i cried for all the animals i knew and lost. i cried for all the unknown animals that have suffered. i cried for the loss and grief that i would have to bear when my own animals pass away. i cried for a lifetime and more. the friend whom i was supposed to comfort held me and rocked me until I finished crying.

crying doesnt make it better, but it can be cathartic. it will soothe you because you will accept the cruel game of life and death played by Nature. you will never stop missing Isaac and he can never be replaced, but the emptiness left behind by a beloved animal can only be filled by another animal. I don't know why and it certainly doesnt work with human beings, but it's true! Isaac died surrounded by beauty, love and was free. i'd like to think that he didnt die at all and that he is only invisible. Isaac is never going to go away and consider yourself lucky whenever you miss him..because thats when he is letting you spot a glimpse or two of him.

Shuna, you remind us here in the dawn of the 21st century about what truly matters...that life is a sensuous journey. What we see and hear and smell and touch and eat count for everything. When the world is too much with me and I've been at my computer for too long I go on to your pages and remind myself that there are people out in the universe who actually care a lot about a lot of what I care about. it's a comfort...and a gift.


Them's some fine lookin' border collies. You must be havin' quite a time runnin' after 'em...

No really, I feel your pain. Myself, I'm on my second border collie. They're lunatics. I KNOW! But of course, I'm ruined for any other breed...

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