How do you properly say goodbye to a friend, a family member, who's been your companion for over a decade? How do you fit over 10 years of life, love, and memories into a single memorial? These are questions I've been struggling with since Barnaby passed away last month.
I've owned pets pretty much my entire life, which means I'm no stranger to death. Those of us who choose to surround ourselves with amazing little creatures who, unfortunately, don't live nearly long enough, all must come to decide for ourselves how to best deal with death. We form our own little rituals, ways to make ourselves feel better, to honor our friends, and to keep memories of them alive.
Sometimes, though, our rituals just don't feel like enough. No memorial can portray just how amazing our little friend was. No words can encompass what it meant to share our lives with them.
Barnaby was my companion for over 10 years. That little bunny and I went through so much together. Barnaby was my rock. Well, maybe more like a pebble. A pebble that came with me no matter where I roamed, that I knew would be there to make me smile even when we found ourselves far from home.
Now he's gone, and despite the fact that I have many more rocks in my life now than I did when I first adopted Barnaby, I can't help but feel that something big has been taken from me. To most just a silly little rabbit, but so much more to me.
So many times over the past month I've started working on Barnaby's memorial video, or started the process of ordering him a memorial frame so I can give him a place of honor among the pictures of my other beloved pets who have passed. Started - but not finished. How do I sort through over 10 years of pictures and videos and memories and somehow condense all that into one short(ish) video? How do I pick one picture out of literally thousands for his memorial frame to represent his entire life?
The conclusion I've come to is that no picture I select is going to accurately tell a 10 year story. Nothing I type, no video I make, is going to make people understand exactly how amazing Barnaby was, what he meant to me, or how much I miss him. But that's okay, because I don't need other people to understand. I understand, and although he's gone now Barnaby will forever be a part of my life story. I'll never forget him, and I'll always look back at the memories we made together fondly.