Grow old along with me! The best is yet to be, The last of life, for which the first was made: Our times are in His hand Who saith "A whole I planned, Youth shows but half; trust God: see all, nor be afraid!" - From "Rabbi Ben Ezra" by Robert Browning

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Sweet Dreams, Lulu

John, and Jesse James Carroll walking the burial site
We buried Lulu early this morning, not long after sun-up.
Jesse begins digging the hole that will be Lulu's grave
When you bury a beloved family pet in the back yard, perhaps you have a simple ceremony, wrapping the pet in a favorite blanket, and leaving a favorite toy with him in a small grave you've dug yourself. You whisper your good-byes amid tears of love and sorrow, and perhaps you leave a small marker, or plant a flowering bush as a reminder. I've done it many times myself.

Hard, dense clay soil. Difficult even for the bobcat
On a farm, however, when you're burying an animal much larger than a family pet, especially in hot weather, you need a bigger area and a deeper hole, something larger than a shovel to dig with, and speed, in order to get ahead of the decay.

Yesterday, John was able to find a man who agreed to bring his bobcat over and bury Lulu for us. Jesse James Carroll, quite a character we found out, came over yesterday afternoon and looked over the area where he would dig the hole. He is a very nice man, and he quoted us a very reasonable price for the job. He was also quite sympathetic to our loss. That was a nice bonus for us, we thought.

The last scoop being removed
From start to finish, the whole process took about 45 minutes. The "hole" was not really a hole, but a scooped out area deep on one end and shallow on the other. When it was ready, John dragged the container (an old water trough) with Lulu in it, down into the hole and, very unceremoniously, dumped Lulu into the deep end.

Although I took lots of pictures of the entire process, including pictures of Lulu in her grave, I have chosen not to post many of them here, desiring to be sensitive to readers who might find such pictures too difficult to view. However, I did include one picture that shows Lulu already partially covered with soil. I thought it was important to the goals of this blog to show the full reality of farm life, and how we must deal with some things in a very pragmatic way, even when they affect us emotionally.

I said my good-byes to Lulu yesterday, but spoke another quiet good-bye this morning as the first scoop of dirt fell over her. John too, I found out later, said his good-byes during the burial process. Neither of us cried. It's difficult to muster tears when there's a stranger digging a huge hole in your back yard with giant machinery. We were both too busy watching the bobcat jerk back and forth and around to think about how we were feeling about losing Lulu. It was rather nerve-wracking, actually, and we were both relieved when it was over.

John and I had to leave rather quickly after Lulu was buried this morning. We had been scheduled for more than a month to attend a gun safety class at the Sheriff's Department, and we were already going to be late. So we had no time for a ceremony for Lulu's passing. We're okay with that. It doesn't mean we loved Lulu any less than we did the other pets we've lost and cried over, and buried with ceremony. It just means that even on a farm the business of life keeps us moving forward, preventing us from standing still in any one moment for too long.

No comments:

Post a Comment