A Time of Remembrance

by Isabel M.Gordon

Sometimes I sit in my room after a long difficult day and just think...I let my mind meander and chase fleeting thoughts on gossamer wings. I dive and soar through my recollections of moments. Some are sweet or joyful. They uplift me and make me feel as though I am really flying...whoosh! I can almost feel the wind against my face. Others touch the places inside that are still bruised and hurt. They're the ones that spring up suddenly and with no warning; like a sharp turn on that tailwind I am riding. Tonight I sat down for my journey. I never thought my wanderings would ever take me to the special place I saw tonight.

As I glanced at the calendar I couldn't help buy notice how quickly the year has passed. Being a methodical person, it was a natural course that I would take a quick look back and make a brief tally or my victories and losses this year. The losses came to mind first and were the first of three legs in this nights adventure. I could feel the tears well up in my eyes as my most recent upheaval flashed before my eyes. I wondered if I would ever feel safe again; if I would ever feel secure in the health of my family. Thinking about all we have been through I suddenly had the inclination to reach down to my right, where Buster always rested, and lay my hand on his head like I've done so many times before. He would lay quietly; sometimes I think he actually took those little flights of fancy with me. I reached for him...but tonight he wasn't there. So this time I made my journey alone...or did I?

Drifting down that misty road I became aware of a warm familiar feeling...a feeling of being safe. I couldn't see anyone there, but I knew Buster was there; I could feel him. It was so natural to talk to him and tell him how much I've missed him. I asked him if he was ok...if he was happy. I expected this to be a painful catharsis, but it turned out to be a celebration of the love we share with our once in a lifetime companions. "I'm fine..really I am. We all are. Our days are fill with games, chasing squirrels and anything else that comes along. I like the puppies best of all. They come here like little lost children but immediately catch sight of the bridge and all the bridgekeepers and their little hearts are light once more" "Are you ever lonely or frightened? Who takes care of you if you are sick?" I asked. "Oh ma, we never get sick here. And there is never anything frightening. Sometimes we go to the Bridge and watch as some moms and dads come to meet their bridgekids. Its always such a wonderful thing. Each day brings another happy reunion and we celebrate together. We get visits every once in a while from humans who don't have a bridgekid of their own but love animals; or from children who never had a chance to have pets. Those are my favorite visitors! At night we count stars and tell stories about our lives with you and the fun times we had" Buster's voice conveyed such bliss that I felt happy for him.

"Our visit will be over soon, but I want you to deliver this message to our humans back home. Please tell them that our happiness can only be complete if we can look down to them and see smiles on their faces when they think of us because then we will know they *understand*" I told him that at this time of year we can't help but think of our bridgekids and miss them perhaps a little more. I told him how I wished he had had one more Merry Christmas...or Happy New Year. "We have very Merry Christmas' here! All the children, puppies, dogs, cats ... just everybody who is not there with you is here with us! You know what? We even get to help make some of that holiday magic you feel. We are still with you if you would just see us. I was your heartdog; but here we are everyone's." Suddenly it became so clear to me. Finally I understood. They are now a part of that light from which all good things flow. They are the hush we hear in the night after a snowfall; the sweet scent after a summer storm. They are the beauty we see each Spring when the hills are bathed in hues of red, yellow and blue on a bed of green. They are the warmth we feel from the sun touching our skin. They are all things eternal. The coldest of Winters will give way to Spring which in turn will step aside as Summer awakens from her sleep. Now they are part of this cycle once more.

My journey is coming to its conclusion as I feel the gentle but steady pull of reality. The treasure I have brought back with me is one to share with you.

But I said there were three legs of this journey. Now that I have revisited and given some closure to things in the past, its time to look forward to the future. Here's hoping that peace, acceptance and fond memories light our journey like little footlights in the dark. And when the final steps are taken, may we all rejoice in seeing our own bridgekids as their turn comes to reunite amidst the cheers and tears of joy.

Remembrance © 1996 IMGordon

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