I moved to California ten years ago. Because places in a decent area that allow pets are pricey, and we didn't have much money, Dante stayed behind with my parents, where he lived ever since. And I'm eternally grateful for the love they had given him.
It pains me I wasn't there with him at the end. I also wasn't there for the death of my other pets. Don't get me wrong - I love ALL my pets. But something is different about this. I feel like there's a gaping whole in my heart and I'm having a hard time accepting that he's gone. Even though I only saw him for a few weeks a year, just knowing he's not there right now, and he won't be there in a few weeks when I visit for the holidays hurts.
We've decided to keep the ashes. When I visit, we'll have a small memorial session for him - he was a huge part of our family. And maybe then I'll have some closure.
Until then, I find the pain goes away when I look at pictures or watch videos of him. Seeing his face and goofy grin comforts me and I feel everything is okay.
You were incredibly intelligent, super kooky, and unconditionally loving. I love you, Dante. Thank you for bringing such joy and love to our lives.
Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there, I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow,
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain,
I am the gentle autumn's rain.
When you awaken in the morning's hush,
I am the swift uplifting rush
of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there, I did not die...