To Our Wonderful Beautiful Boy.
The worst day I can remember. The day we said our Sorry’s and Goodbye.
To the most wonderful creature we have ever known.
Our furry son, no longer a mother and a father.
No longer a furry assistant, waiting for his bit. We came home and I almost called you for dinner. Then sobbed uncontrollably, you will not come. I cannot stroke your beautiful fluffy ears any more or reach to scratch your head for you. The mad rush to the kitchen when dinner is ready.
No longer wild with pain, we couldn’t make better.
No more Monday song, Happy Birthday or answer to my questions.
No more “where’s Kato, did anybody see him” and your little smile peeking round the blanket.
No more clambering up to give me kisses as I write or huffing because the light is on in the early hours.
The one who came for back rubs and kisses goodnight before he slept. Sat at my feet whenever he was unsure about a new visitor or doubted someone’s intentions. Looking after his Mummy, just as he had been told to.
The one the children called out to say Hello to on their way home from school and who ran to greet them.
The one who chased your feet to play with them, stealing your socks.
The one who emptied his pool before we could fill it and chased the hosepipe every time that we used it, barking with excitement that he might get chased and soaked with it as I watered the garden.
The wolf we fed by hand from day one, every day bowl by bowl. Who answered me when I spoke to him and followed me everywhere.
The one who knew what dinner would be, just by the ingredients being assembled and skipped with joy when it was one of his favourites. You knew the difference between five minutes and ten. You would let me know when dinner was cooked and there was no need to set a clock, since you would remind me. So intelligent, yet gentle, loving and kind. Full of the very best type of nonsense, to lift the darkest mood, lightening it just by being there.
Our beautiful boy, who loved us unconditionally, was here when I awoke, morning or night, with a paw to say Good Morning and his wonderful smile which made my heart glad to see another day, whatever the weather. Goodnight my sweet prince, it wasn’t your fault, I knew you were ill and we could do nothing for you to put it right, we did not see the signs early enough, you couldn’t tell us that you were hurting, just that you were tired, so tired and wanted to sleep, that you didn’t have the energy to play with your toys. The ball had lost it’s allure, you stopped taking it in to Daddy, you didn’t want to jump on the bed each morning to wake him up, you preferred to be along side, you didn’t jump on Mummy’s bed so often. You took your blanket to the garden and slept in the corner, not out in the open. What had made you want to sleep more, play less and gave you less enjoyment took you from us, we could not let you suffer still.
Our hearts are broken, there is a huge gaping hole where your larger than life character filled till only the other day. Grief is all consuming. I laid with you on the floor holding you until you went, burying my head in your soft fur and reassuring you, Mummy was here with Daddy and we loved Kato, because everybody loved Kato. We will always love you, our Kato.
The scars will heal, but words cannot truly explain how deep the pain is. More than just a the greatest dog I could ever have. Hand chosen, the best puppy and your Nanny’s Grand Dog. You were Loved by so many. The puppy that just never stopped growing, in size and character.
If there is a rainbow bridge that they speak of, then I hope that you go “running running” wild and free, going native just as you would be, your heart singing as loud as you can and knowing that you made our family complete. I did not want for more, you were enough, larger than life, all loving, a wonderful furry person. The son I had was better than I could ever have hoped for.
As I strain to listen for Woo’s on the wind, I want to howl just so that you can hear me. I want to howl the pain away and I want to hear you howl back, to sing together, just like we used to again every day.
No more Happy Birthday or How Much is that Doggy, no more answers to my questions. No more tilted head on one side, when I ask “Would you Like?” or skipping to the kitchen. Chasing your tail with delight when I ask, “Would anyone like any Ice Cream?” I want to wrap your furry body in my arms and dance around the garden again with your arms around my waist, making Daddy laugh. To play paws on the floor. I want to gaze at you that my eyes well up with tears with so much love again and have you reach out to me with a furry kiss when I say Hello my beautiful boy, Mummy Loves you So Much.
As I sat alone the morning after you’d gone eating breakfast in the garden, the crow who came to visit, who you used to shout “Go Crow” at, came and it looked for you. It called out to you. Sat waiting for your arrival, but you did not come. It spoke in it’s own language I looked up and told it, He’s not here, he has gone. It scratched it’s head in disbelief and stood on one leg, it answered me and flew away.
The garden is empty, the flowers are drooping, they know that you are gone, not there to sniff them and inspect for bees. The birds sit and wait for your bark, the neighbours Scottie dog you taught to howl, barks alone waiting for a reply that will not come. The neighbours, your friends tearful and holding their own sweet memories of you.
As the wind whistles through the trees on your hillside, the wildlife come to visit, we will remember you running through the long grass looking for Mummy as we played Hide and Seek on the day I took our favourite photo, which now takes pride of place in the lounge, where you once sat watching over us, your family. Your Moo Cows will look for you and call your name at night. The pheasant will pass by, just that little bit more nervously in case you rush from your hiding place to startle it, before doing your victory skip.
The nonsense has taken it’s exit, the mischief and the smile.
We are united in our grief, a family in crisis, for the one that we loved so much, as our son is gone.
The silence is deafening and yet I can hear your voice on the wind, in my head you are answering the questions, your thoughts so in tune with mine. The words to Daddy’s Christmas Tree song, “Underneath the Christmas Tree with Mummy and the fluffiest teddy, underneath the Christmas Tree with Kato and the fluffiest ears.” How you would both sing it together going round in my head this morning as I thought of you and it follows me throughout the day. The photos I have will serve to remind me of the wonderful times that we have shared, when we wanted for nothing except the company of each other and were so happy.
Every process from coffee in the morning, to preparation of lunch and dinner, my furry assistant is not there behind me, he is not waiting for his bit. Thanking me with a kiss after each morsel to the absence of Goodnight Kato, Mummy loves you, see you in the morning.
I am broken my beloved, numb from pain, whilst it sears through my heart. Consumed by grief, that I cannot think rationally, tears stinging my face when a thought or memory reappears. Your Daddy is quiet too, thinking of you and trying not to break, willing the pain in his heart away.
Your blanket at my side, breathing your smell, tufts of fur appearing like feathers upon the wind, gentle reminders of the life you have lived with us, we will hold it all in our memories, the unconditional love for each other that the three of us shared. The clip of a conversation, where you told me that you loved me and I told you I loved you too. The video clip when Daddy returned to the house and came back to you from a long trip, how you welcomed him. Like a Hero, our Hero had returned to us. I want to watch them again and again so that you are still here in some small way, that we will never be apart.
You were strong for me when I was broken, sat by my side when I needed you, I wished that I could do the same for you. My thoughts leaving me wondering if only, if there had been a way to make you better, for your pain to be healed. I don’t know how long you carried the pain with you, but you did so bravely my darling boy, hid it so well from us and still smiled and loved us with all your heart.
Now Rest in Peace, My sweet furry prince. Our most beautiful Baby Bear with the fluffy ears until we meet again, watching over us your spirit by my side evermore.
Please come back to visit us my darling, there will be a candle in our hearts to light your way.
Kato Teddy Bear, Prince of the Night. 18/5/11 to 26/7/16
The Daily Post – Crisis