Today started just like any other. The alarm went off at 0500 and I started my day bathing the girls, getting them dressed, cooking breakfast, finding boots and Boos school bag. All the normal things I usually do.
Until I went to the back door to call our cat in. Her name is Nermle or Jingle Bell, it depends on who you ask. Unlike all the other mornings that she comes bounding in the door entertaining us with her antics and yowling conversation., she didn’t show. No Nermle. No Jingle Bell. No bounding. No yowling. Just a deathly silence.
I grew up knowing that on a farm there will be loss of life. I was taught that cows, pigs, sometimes even chickens would end up as supper, and that in that loss we gained. I was taught there would also be other losses of life, even among our dearest pets; dogs, horses, cats.
And today my children, the children of the next farming generation, the children of the HK Bar will be taught these lessons of loss.
My husband Kevin found Nermle. Lifeless.
Of course Boo and Owl at One and Two are too young to realize that Nermle is no longer with us. Out of sight out of mind. Boo is at school right now so I’m spending my hours today thinking of the family discussion we will have when she gets home from school, and the funeral we will have, and how we will all cry and hurt together over the loss of our wonderful kitty.
In all this I thank God for these lessons that he is teaching my girls. I thank Him that they too, like I did and the generations of farm families before me learned; there will always be loss; but in every loss there will be gain. Even if the gain is learning how to say goodbye, even if the lesson smashes your heart into a million pieces.
Today we will celebrate a life.
Today we will cry.
Today we will say goodbye.
Today we will learn what loss is.
And in that we will be reminded how beautiful life truly is.
From the HK Bar to the world, in life, there will always be losses.