Some of these journeys have been expected, others have been a surprise but understood. I don’t know if it is because of the number of friends who have passed, and families who have grieved, but when Presley passed this week it seemed so devastating.
Presley’s passing came like a lightning strike on a sunny day. It was unexpected, and inconceivable, something that was supposed to happen in the distant future. When Presley awoke to greet his last day as a mortal dog, no one expected the darkness evening would bring. Presley was the same dog he had been for 11 years, without a hint of illness.
But inside this precious boy was a tumor that exploded on Thursday. He went from happily playing to being in severe distress in a heartbeat. I know it happens that way sometimes, but when Presley was struck down, it was calamitous. He had always been so active and healthy. He seemed like he would live forever.
That was because we had known Presley forever. It has been ten years since we first met him on social media when he was just a puppy. Only a few days would pass without his proud mother Aunt Beth writing about Presley’s mischievous behavior. Rarely would a week pass without him giving us a smile. He was part of our lives, and without warning, he was gone from the mortal world.
He has been with his brother Jovi for so long it is inconceivable to think of Jovi being without him. Presley and Jovi ran together as lyrically as they did in their yard. Now, Jovi is confused and alone.
Every Rainbow Bridge greeting is different. Some are joyous, and some are somber. Presley’s was one of the saddest I can recall. We could not wait for him to climb the stairs. We angels all ran en masse to him and held him silently.
“I think we should finish this,” Presley finally said. He was not sad, but he was disappointed. There was so much more he would have like to have accomplished as a mortal dog. But, while we dogs make plans the fates laugh.
Tag and Atlas, two of his brothers, met him after he passed Stella’s step. There was another long, silent hug. More than us angels, those two knew the wonderful life Presley had, and the tragedy of it ending.
We all stood together as the huge clouds full of tears for Presley fell on us, ran down our furs, then over our paws, either puddling or flowing into the River of Life. I could barely remember a harder tear rain. I wanted to tell my friend he had been greatly honored by the mortal humans who knew him but it wasn’t the time. He had a lot of adjusting to do.
Presley started his new job of being his mother’s angel quietly. I knew his angel visits home bothered him because Aunt Beth was so sad, and for the first time in his existence, he could not ease her pain with a look and a lick. But we all vowed to teach him how to let his mom know he was there even when she knew it wasn’t possible he was.
Slowly, Presley is beginning to adjust to life as an angel. He most enjoys doing good for others, which should not be surprising for us who know this good-natured boy.
Sometimes mortal life is cruel. I so wish it wasn’t. If only Presley had more time.
All we can do, when something has been broken, is try to accept that today will be worse than yesterday and hope that tomorrow is better than both.