As many of you who know me know, I’m not much for organized religion. Having lived in the deep south (North Carolina) for some time, I had the opportunity to meet many devoutly religious people – some were wonderful people, and some were the most racist, judgmental people I’ve ever come across. I do not for a second believe that your religious beliefs or practices can define you as a person. I do not go to church, have no desire to ever go to church, struggle with the thought that ‘God’ is an individual who is not only solely responsible for my life, but guides it daily, etc. However, I try to be a good person, and I DO believe that there is more than just us – fragile creatures of Earth – spinning on a blue marble in space, alone. I just cant fit my beliefs, or my assumptions, neatly into a box, as defined by a specific religion. None of them truly make any sense to me. I am at heart, a scientist. (NOT to be confused with scientologist!)
That being said, a couple of months ago, I lost my precious dog Sophie to complications from cancer. It was a quick, unexpected death for her, and while I knew it was inevitably coming, it happened with a suddenness that I did not expect. While I’m grateful that she didn’t overly suffer, and that I was with her when it happened (instead of the kids), I have found that I miss her profoundly. I don’t possess that sixth sense that some seem to have – I don’t feel her nearby – or see her in her favorite places (lying in the backyard in the sun). I have since adopted another rescue dog (a story for another time, for sure), but I still miss my sweet but stubborn Sophie terribly, and can literally count the days and hours since she had to go. (It’s been 56 days and 17 hours as I write this).
The other day, Ellie Bean (my new pup) and I went for a long walk through the nature trails that surround my neighborhood. It was a bit chilly and we were alone for the entire five miles we walked. Like most dog owners, I babble constantly to my pets, and today was no exception. I told her how Sophie and I used to take walks like this and that she and Soph would have been buddies, etc. Blah, blah, blah. I looked to the sky, told Sophie I missed her, and would love for her to send me a sign so I would know she’s okay. I also said, “you know me Soph, it cant be subtle either, else I’ll miss it”.
The next day, I had to work. I am an ICU nurse and work in an 18 bed unit. I had been hoping to care for the patients I had had before my day off, but was assigned to two other patients. Both were critically ill, on life support, with multiple medicated drips and other equipment at the bedside, so it was a crazy busy day. That morning, one of my patient’s daughters was in to see her dad, and said she’d be back later that afternoon. She did return, and she came in carrying a little ‘beany baby’ sized stuffed tan dog for her Dad. As she put in in his hand, she looked up at me and said that the stuffed dog was named Sophie, and that she was very special to her Dad. It took me a minute to realize what she called the dog, but as signs go, it wasn’t subtle. Soph had found a way to let me know she was okay.
Coincidence? Sure, maybe…but I asked for it, and I’ll take it. ♥
I LOVE YOU, SOPHIE!!