It is somber when a new angel crosses Rainbow Bridge accompanied by clouds of tears from all the souls who loved the pup. We can feel their pain in our hearts crashing into us like soundwaves.
But there is something even sadder. That is when there are no tears because the new Angel never knew love on the mortal side. These are the dogs we rally around; these are the dogs who arrive at the Bridge knowing it is their first forever home, and there are lots of humans here ready to let know the love only people can give.
When Noel arrived, there was a small cloud of tears. The raindrops came from our friend Jacques, Jolie and Francois’ mom who worked at the shelter Noel called home, and from the other shelter workers. He arrived there after being diagnosed with bladder cancer at his foster home. Noel was brought back to the shelter. Francois’ mom and the other workers thought Noel’s time had come earlier in the month, but Noel rallied back. But this week Noel had no more rallies, and he passed over into the immortal life.
Noel arrived with the same thoughts that so many shelters dogs think. He was convinced he would have no family or friends waiting for him. When he reached the top of the cliff looking over the River of Life, he found out how wrong he was.
There were dozens of friends waiting for Noel. After I gave him the oath, the dogs all swarmed him, hugging him, welcoming him home, and telling him that all his suffering was now over.
Noel was confused. “Who are all you dogs? How do you know me?” he asked.
I spoke up. “All of us are angel friends of Jacques, Jolie, and Francois. Their mom told us about you, and how much she loved you. We know that you are a very special boy who needs to be shown all the love we have.”
He looked around, confused. “But I am just a homeless dog,” he said.
“Not anymore,” I told him. “We have many parents who are willing to take you in: Miss Vicki, Miss Jackie, Miss Gina, Miss Dodie and more. They have big houses filled with dogs, and they all want you to live with them. Most of these dogs are like you, they never found love on the mortal side, but now that you are on the immortal side you are going to find nothing but love.”
He was stunned. “Am I in heaven?” he asked.
I put my paw on his shoulder. “There are many names for this place. You can call it that. It is a place where the unrescued dog finds forever homes, forever love, and their pain stops forever.”
Smartie, a rescued dog, walked up to Noel and asked him if he wanted to run up and down the hills and through the meadows. Noel said he had never done it before.
“It’s easy,” Smartie said. “Just follow.”
Smartie took off followed by a smiling Noel who barked with joy. He was happy, he was free, and he was loved.
He ran towards the setting sun where his happily ever after awaited.