Wiley's Wisdom

Joy: From the Ground Up

The Rainbow Bridge December 8, 2014

Filed under: Man's Best Friend — Wiley Schmidt @ 9:00 pm
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When it rains, it pours. It’s a commonly overused phrase I can’t say I usually get behind. But today is not the norm. Today, I concede. Today, I agree that sometimes life has a way of pouring down on people. Because it has.

My dear forever dad’s brother and sister-in-law and their family haven’t just gotten rain in recent weeks. They’ve gotten walloped with hurricane-strength winds and blinding rain. First his sister-in-law, Melissa, suffered an injury that has kept her from doing what she loves most – working out. It’s more than a part of her day – it’s her passion. And it’s one she couldn’t live for the past several weeks.

Not even when she could have used the stress relief when her dad left her for heaven. Or when her dad’s sister, her aunt, went with him a few days later. Not even today, when she lost her beloved dog, Mocha.

Since she was seven weeks old, Mocha has brought nothing by joy from the ground up to this family. She was the family’s first child. She stood by as they brought their adopted son, Sam, home from Kazakhstan. She kept watch when they brought their daughter, Sophie, home from the hospital after she was born.

And lately she’s struggled. She stood on shaky legs. She wandered away from home. She got into the habit of eating lots of things that weren’t meant to be eaten by dogs.

But today, she went to the Rainbow Bridge, where she is as happy and healthy as she was back in the days when she used to outrun her owners as they sped around their community on roller blades. She doesn’t get tired or wander aimlessly anymore.

There, she will wait patiently until she reunites with the family again one day and the family crosses the bridge together.

Until then, she will be remembered.

I know this because there is one thing about rain I can stand behind. When it rains, it pours. It is true sometimes. In this case, it’s pouring tears for this family. But there is something to be said for all that rain and all those tears. Tomorrow is a new day. The rainbow that follows carries with it a promise of new beginnings. Brighter days. Second chances. Fresh starts.

The loss of Mocha today proves it. She will be watching. She will be waiting. Her soul will help keep the rainbow aglow.

Rest in peace, dear Mocha. You are loved and you will be remembered.

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When It Rains March 17, 2014

It started at 1:23 a.m. That is when baby Carter started crying (all right, more like screaming), almost an hour an a half before he usually wakes up hungry this morning. So mom and dad got up, fed him, and went back to bed. Mom wasn’t sleeping very well to begin with, so I snuggled my best. I’m not sure it mattered.

Then at 5:36 a.m. the phone calls and text messages started. My dear grandma, who was all set to babysit baby Carter on mom’s first day back to work, couldn’t come. She broke a tooth eating breakfast of all things, and needed to get in to see a dentist as soon as possible. Thank goodness for my aunt Morgan, who swooped in to save the day.

Though I’m not entirely sure she saved much other than Carter and I, since it was definitely one of those days for mom. The kind that never ends even though you wish you could just go to bed and have it be tomorrow. The polar opposite of the kind of days you savor. The kind that when it rains it pours. Because when she got back to work, she was greeted by far more than she expected. Far more than she would be capable of catching up on in a day (let alone a month or two). For some, this would be an easy enough mountain to climb. Slow and steady. For mom, who cares so very deeply for doing the right thing even if it hurts, it was like a punch to the stomach.

I know as well as anyone she hates to let people down, and that is exactly what she felt like from the moment she got to back to work. She was letting Carter (and me) down because she left. She was letting her clients down because she couldn’t take care of them all at once. Ultimately, she let herself down because of letting all of this get to her.

Meanwhile, I was home monitoring the Carter situation and he was not happy. It started again yesterday – after days (or maybe weeks?) of fairly decent behavior, he started crying inexplicably. All the time. Morgan rocked him and sang to him and fed him and changed him and dressed him and nothing seemed to work. If I didn’t know better, I would say he and mom are on some sort of level emotional playing field. The way she has been crying the last couple of days mirrors his cries in a way I can’t think is a coincidence.

But it ended at 9:08 p.m. Baby Carter finally fell asleep. And mom and dad breathed a collective sigh of relief. Because let’s be honest. Sometimes there are days like this. Days with very little (if any) silver lining. Days that just plain run us down. When it rains it pours. But at least I know one thing for sure. That rainbow always follows the storm.