Jul 05, 2023
Remembering the truest love I have ever known
Aug 26, 2023 I am proof that love exists. Call it fate. Consider it luck. I refer to it as a blessing. It is that rare, genuine love you think you will never find. The kind I kept wishing for with
Aug 26, 2023
I am proof that love exists.
Call it fate. Consider it luck. I refer to it as a blessing.
It is that rare, genuine love you think you will never find. The kind I kept wishing for with each and every breath I exhaled into the candle flames on my birthday cake. Year after year.
To have someone believe in me with such vulnerability? To be the recipient of such trust? That’s quite a responsibility. I’m holding their heart in my hands.That another would have such faith believing I would never hurt them and never harm either them or their heart?
How can anyone put that much trust into me? I am certainly not that special.
I have my mood swings. Sometimes, but not too often, I can implode and even startle myself. Yet, their love for me never wanes.
Even on those days I go without makeup, throw my hair into one of those messy buns and opt for comfy pajamas instead of lovely clothing, I am still considered beautiful. It is truly a love almost impossible to come by. But it is real. It is amazingly real.
For those who do not yet know who I am referring to, let me preface the answer by saying there’s an excellent chance most of you have this identical love yourself. And the reason I brought this topic up is because Monday is national Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day.
Those who came up with the idea to set aside 24 hours to remember the loss of a pet may have meant well. But the reality is, when it comes to the death of an animal you’ve parented, that loss is far greater than a mere 24 hours. Anyone who has had a dog pass away knows the heartbreak and devastation that comes along with their leaving. The pain lingers on and on.
And anything can trigger that pain — even years later.
Perhaps its coming across that once-irritating squeak toy that no longer has its owner to make the noise. Maybe it’s the little yellow rain jacket hanging on the hook by the back porch door that will never have the chance to get wet again.
No, 24 hours just isn’t enough. The time we are allotted with them isn’t enough.
It wouldn’t be unreasonable to set aside the remainder of our lives to grieve the loss of our family pet.
We once defined our animal as family, because that is what they truly are. And family never lets down family.
So yes, this Monday I will remember.
Let us all remember how a dog has such little time to spend with us in the first place. And during that time they constantly worry whenever we leave the house without them.
But how they rejoice upon our return. As their owner, we are not just part of their life, we are their entire world.
My dogs have never let me down. They have never left me heartbroken. Never caused me to cry in the night. They’ve been my everything — faithful, loyal, understanding. They kiss the tears falling from your eyes and lick the wounds that scar you. As if it was their job to doctor you and make everything alright again. Their hearts cannot be matched. Their compassion cannot be forgotten.
I am an example that love exists. And as Will Rogers said, “If there are no dogs in heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went.”
Truly, a love like no other.
(Stenger, a resident of Toronto, is community editor of the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times.)
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