I wrote this blog a couple weeks ago and promptly lost it so I'm trying again. Maybe this lapse is good since I've had more time to think through what I wanted to write. Over the past year, I've had several experiences that linger in my mind that resurface periodically for pondering. Here are my thoughts to date.
Have you ever considered the nature of friendships across species? I got to thinking about this a year ago when we had to put one of our miniature dachshunds to sleep. This little black dog, Pivo (the name's another story) was more my companion than his brown littermate. He loved to sit on my lap while I read or watched TV and snuggled next to me at night. he didn't have to be in the same room where I was, but needed to know which room I was in. When he was ten years old, he developed heart disease. Last spring he developed heart failure and we decided that it was cruel to keep him with us. The experience of putting a dog to sleep was very hard.
The next day I was working at the computer and a black dog walked in the room, looked at me as left. I thought one of the other two had to go outside so I saved my work and went to the living room where both dogs were asleep. Perhaps,Pivo -the ghost dog was checking up on me.
The experience makes me wonder about those special relationships that develop across species lines and whether they go on somehow after death.
In December of last year a close friend, who lives in another state, died unexpectedly. At the time I was away from home at a three-day seminar. During the last night, a voice woke me up from a sound sleep. There were no words, but, "Oooo, oh. Ah." I opened my eyes to see who was waking me up and no one was there. I made use of the wakeful moment to go to the bathroom. I got home late in the afternoon of the same day and my husband told me about our friend's death. When her husband phoned that night, I realized that the time of her death was close to the time of my experience with the voice. I have to wonder if she came to say good-bye.
What happens with these human friendships? There are all kinds of theories and speculations in books, but might these ties might continue beyond this physical life?
Another shift. My father died with some kind of non-Alzheimer's dementia. I used to think about where the essentail person he was had gone. Scientific articles tell you what happens in the brain and what might cause it as well as what might prevent or cure it, but no one can say where the essential person has gone.
A good friend is beginning to have signs of dementia. I don't know 'where' she is going, but I do know that I will still be her friend, even when she no longer knows who I am. I have to believe that these ties go on when mental function changes and life ceases.
So many questions and no answers. There are so many books and speculations about existence after death. Perhaps the only way to understand fully is after making that transition ourselves. It is not an event I will hasten, but it's the only conclusion I can reach now.
By the way, have you checked my website? You can find out more about me as well as three books I've written. If you want to buy them, order them through your favorite bookstore and I'll be glad to send you signed bookplates - my contact information is on the website.