My goldfish died at a young age.
Then my hamster.
Then my second hamster.
I was done with pets after that second hamster. I couldn’t cope with it anymore. I never thought that I could be powerless until death happened in my childhood. I learned that shoe boxes could be used for more than just… shoes.
We are often surprised by the passing of our beloved house pets, and yet we are not taught how to cope.
I never knew that funerals were about celebration until my grandmother died. The funeral pamphlet exclaimed: “we are celebrating her today!”
We should be teaching celebration and reflection for our passing pets.
I thought the miserable feeling was part of it, but a celebration is better. A celebration is meaningful. We must celebrate the lives of those we lose. Those are the memories to share amongst each other.
Our children should be permitted to celebrate. It is never too young to start. A children’s story can ease a toddler into the inevitable realities of life. Better to celebrate now than to experience trauma and stifle life lessons.
This reflection is inspired by my children’s story about the passing of my second hamster, Miffy. You can read, watch and listen to it for free here.