Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The paw print

The Dude is still on vacation time and likely will be all week. So I sent him on an errand to the vet clinic to retrieve Jerry's ashes, which had just recently arrived. I was expecting a small cardboard box with a plastic bag. I was going to scatter them somewhere or give them to my brother to scatter.

When I opened the box, which was a light blue, it contained an urn. The urn was stoney and sealed with a stiff ribbon around the neck holding a sold bronzy heart with "Jerry" engraved across it. It's small, beautiful and I shed tears when I held it. I didn't think it would mean so much to me to have his ashes in such a sweet little urn with his name on it.

But that wasn't all that was in the box. Inside was a silky navy drawstring bag. I opened it up and found a flat oval terracotta imprint of Jerry's paw. That did it. If I was moved by the urn, I was weeping over the paw print. The Dude and I held it and discussed ways to keep it safe and yet somewhere we could see it. We'll think of something soon.

I don't regret my choice to cremate him, not at all. I thought it was a little expensive, but didn't want to possibly ever regret not doing it so I shrugged off the cost and forgot about it. Now I see why it was so much. But I know I'll do it again when it's Smokey's time, hopefully a really long time from now. I can see the urn from here. It gives me a little feeling of peace knowing there's something of my little Jerry still here with me. And that damn paw print. God almighty. My heart broke in a sweet way over seeing that.

Emotions are in focus around these parts lately. We started our chickflickathon yesterday with The Notebook, and today was When Harry Met Sally. Since the Dude has already seen Shakespeare in Love, we're subbing in The Piano. It really is a lovely way to end an evening with a movie that makes you feel something.

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