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To My Beloved Friends


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On the first day of March 2007, one of my pet ferrets had passed away.

Her name was Sprite, and she was my little spitfire.

She was so dainty, and full of spunk. She was only four years old when I found her lying on the floor during playtime. Her sibling Marshall was upset, he raced all over the two floor cage they share together, trying to find her. I was in shock. I was numb for a while, I was beating my self up.

For a while, she would get these slight shakes and I didn't realize until it was too late that she was probably getting deficient in nutrients becuase she was getting older. Ferrets tend to hit old age around four or five years of age. I kept beating my self up mentally over it. "Why didn't I catch it sooner?" "What if I had done this?" "What if I had done that?"

Sprite was a special little ferret to me. She was my "little goil", my ferret fairy princess, magic sprite. She was a beautiful silver, with dainty little feet, a pointy almost fairy like face, and a tough as nails attitude personality despite her small size.

It seems almost like divine timing when it happened. A friend had a ferret that she had bought and then had second thoughts about it. She wanted to find a good home for it. So I offered to take the ferret home and introduce him to my other two ferrets. The three stooges was my nickname for my terrific trio. Marshall and Sprite were curious about the newest member of the family, Davee. But Sprite was a little too rough with Davee, who was still a little baby. She was just showing him who was in charge.

On the night she passed away, Davee kept Marshall company. Ferrets have been known to mourn to death when one of their buddies pass away. I think that Davee was sent to help Marshall, and me. Davee and Marshall soon became the best of buddies.

Then a few months later, our Welsh Pembroke Corgi, Roxie got sick. We couldn't figure it out. Normally she would bark, but that one morning, she didn't bark. She wasn't acting like her self. We took her to the vet, they kept her for a while to do some observations. They took X-rays and claimed that they found something. But after doing an operation, they didn't find anything. It was really upsetting. She stayed at the animal hospital to recover. We recived a call and were informed that Roxie would be ready to go home on the weekend. But that morning was not what I was expecting. My step-dad woke me up and he was crying. He told me that they got a phone call from the animal hospital that roxie had just died. My family and I were crying, and getting ready to go down and see her one last time. I was ready becuase I dressed faster than any one else and I went out side.

In our front yard is a huge palo verde tree right next to our car.

I walked up to the tree and I kicked it as hard as I could.

I kept kicking the tree becuase I was angry.

Angry at the situation.

Angry at my parents.

Angry at my self.

Angry at the Universe, the vets and the operation.

We went down to the Animal Hospital and we all had our last good-bye.

Roxie was a beautiful corgi. Her full name was Roxienne Penelope Fulovit the 3rd. And she wasn't spoiled, she was a princess as my step-dad loved to say about her. She was only six years old when she passed on.

Our nickname for her was lil' mama and it fit her perfectly. Whenever the ferrets would sneeze or wake up, Roxie would spin in place and bark to let us know the "babies" were awake. Then she would pick up her food bowl and carry it over to their cage and eat along side them.

She would also go after our cat Leo becuase it was part of her agenda.

You have to give corgis an agenda, something for them to do, otherwise they'll make up an agenda of their own. And Roxie made her own agenda. :)

I miss her high pitched "baby barks" when she would play with me. I was her play buddy.

And the funny thing was, the very next day after we said our good byes, my step-dad had a plan. We went out for breakfast, but my mom was too upset to eat. My step-dad said that we were going to the Humane Society to "pet the puppies" which sounded like a good idea to me.

Again, it must have been divine timing like before becuase we discovered this cute yellow lab that was only a year old. She hadn't been on the streets for very long, and she was a very loving, very happy puppy. The next thing I know, she was coming home with us. She was very calm, she just stood right next to us, walked to the car and jumped right into the back seat as if to say "Alright, let's go home!" Her name is Sadie, and she is our "Bucket of Love" a big huggable yellow lab with a big heart. Sadie and Davee help my mom and I through the hard times when we're feeling sad.

Then my older ferret Marshall, his health started turning south. I did everything I could to nurse him back to health. He wouldn't eat, so I had to force feed him to keep his strength up. It was a long, slow and tedious process. One night, there was an old rerun of a Johny Cash music show on PBS while I was holding Marshall. I gently swayed to the rythm of the guitar music as I held him, and he snuggled up to me. I think he felt safe in his "daddy's" arms. On the day after my birthday in November, I was getting ready to leave for work. I checked on Marshall, and it looked like he was on his last legs. Davee was right by his side, snuggled up close to his best buddy.

Marshall had passed away that afternoon, but I wasn't told about it until after I got off from work. And what was even more upsetting to me was that my mom had rushed Marshall to the vet before I could even get to hold him one last time. It really upset me. It was a very emotional time becuse my step-dad had also passed away within the same year. "Too much death in the house." my mom said. She tried to talk to me but I was too upset to listen or to try and understand what she was going through. She asked me if something was wrong and I gave a curt reply of "I'm fine!" which was clearly obivous that I wasn't. She knew I was upset, and didn't press the matter any further.

The mistake I made was that I refused to express how I felt, so I held it all in. I didn't allow my self to cry, I avoided the subject when my mom asked me about it, and I kept my self extremely busy. I even lost my self in video games for a while in an attempt to distract my self from sitting with my thoughts and feelings. I was holding on too tightly. I didn't want to let go.

But then one Sunday night, something in my mind or my spirit said "Alright, you've been holding on to all of this long enough. Here it comes. It's time to let go."

A flood of overwhelming sorrow that I had refused to allow my self to feel washed over me. I cried so hard I could feel an emptiness deep in the bottom of my heart. My mom came over and hugged me, and Sadie jumped onto the couch and leaned into me with her head draped over my shoulder like a hug. Even my little brother came in and hugged me.

All the memories of the three pets that had died came flooded into my mind, all the sorrow, the anger, the grief, it wasn't pretty, but it had to come out. And my body was letting me know. It felt like flood gates opening and everything being balanced again. I just cried. I cried so hard I shook and felt empty inside. And then it was over. It was like a storm was raging and then cleared up. It was out of my system, and I felt better. I had learned a valuable lesson. I learned not to bottle up my grief. I still feel sad, I am still grieving. But now I am paying attention. I have two special little pets with me that need my love and care. Davee and Sadie help me through the rough times. And they make me laugh. They help remind me of all the funny little things that Roxie, Marshall and Sprite used to do.

To my beloved friends, I miss you all.

And all the good times we had, Thank you!

I will never forget you ever!

Sprite, my little ferret fairy princess, I will always remember you hopping excitedly on the keyboard, making all sorts of crazy sounds and seeing you acting proud of your "composing".

Roxie, our royal princess, I recall when you were a puppy, you heard your first doorbell. My brother and I were watching the "door bell" scene in "Coming to America" where the man was running back and forth answering a door bell. You woke up and barked, I looked at you and said "doorbell!" jumped up and ran to the door pretending to answer it and running back while singing "no body home at the doorbell!" while you chased me and grabbed at my pant legs.

And Marshall, my acrobat ferret, always proud of how big he was and able to climb over any obstacle that was supposed to keep him in the dining room during play time. Always sizing up the next jump and always missing, reminding me of Wil E. Coyote. I did what I could to help you. I am sorry I wasn't able to be there when you left, but at least Davee was by your side.

Davee misses you, as do I.

You three will always have a special place in my heart, I love you all so very much.

It's a good thing that we still have home videos of our pets. The first time after a long time since I saw them, it was like looking into a window of the past. It still feels like yesterday, but I carry the memories of them in my heart, where they will be with me always. Even though this all happened with a matter of months last year, it still feels like it all started yesterday.

Edited by Erik
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Dear Erik

Words seem to be failing me. To say that this is a hard time for you, is to make a huge understatement, that doesn't even seem fit to be read.

You might call it divine timing, and that's fine and to some extent I'm sure it was. It is very hard to lose a pet and even when another comes into our lives it isn't the same. Different critter, different personality, you name it. But the new pet lets us put a bandaid on things. To cover up the pain at least for a while. That's what happened with you I think. But now time has past and your pain has found a way out around the bandaid. Just like you said it all had to come out. It can't stay bottled up in you forever or you will wonder what has happened to any happiness in your life.

All of your pets sound like wonderful individuals. Each touching and filling up your life in their own way, but now with the loss of Marshall the buried losses of the past are reminding you of your heart and how it hurts. Guess what? That's okay. It's fine for you to mourn them. They gave you love, just as you gave them love. It was a beautiful circle and now it's broken. But you can find peace. Nothing is worth doing is easy and it's worth commemorating their deaths in tears is an offering to them of just how much you miss them. Is it something you need to do everyday, of course not, just whenever you feel like it. Marty, who runs this place, has a web site called Grief Healing and if you ever feel like you've hit a wall or that you don't have anyone to cry on spend a few moments poking around in there, everytime I have a need I can tinker around and find something that will help. Just today I went in there and found Bill of Rights for Grieving Animal Lovers, it wasn't what I was looking for but is well worth reading. Take Care. ^_^

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