Are you guys ready for this admission?
I am not an animal person. At all. I don’t consider animals to be actual family members. Don’t hate me. I mean, yeah, we love our dogs, don’t get me wrong. But I certainly don’t let them lick me (sick) and I wash my hands after every interaction. I know. I feel bad. My kids, though, (mostly Maria) don’t feel the same way. Maria loves our animals as if they were real family members. Like….blood. So you can imagine how she felt today when she went out to feed Obi, her rabbit, and discovered he had died.
That poor girl.
She came inside crying and crying. Sobbing. “I know. He’s in a better place now. He’s in heaven. He’s happy now.” I awkwardly hugged her (because every embrace with me is awkward) and told her that it wasn’t her fault at all, that she took really great care of him (because she did), and he must have been sick. We talked about how animals do get sick and sometimes they don’t get better. She gave him lots of treats, lots of yummy veggies, made sure he had water and food, and so it was out of her control.
But it didn’t make her feel any better.
Now, Jamie, on the other hand, snuck out while I was consoling this poor child and when I looked up from hugs I saw him inching his way closer to the freaking bunny hutch. The hutch that still housed the body of Obi! Susie was attacking him with licks and he was trying as hard as he could to get her down so he could continue on with his mission. I banged on the window probably harder than I needed to in order to get his attention. “What are you doing?!” I shouted through the window ( it was super loud so he could hear me). He screamed, “I’m just trying to get a look at Obi!!!”
I made him come inside and wash his hands even though he didn’t get closer than 10 feet to the hutch because dead things gross me out. After a while he said, “Can you let me on the roof?”
“Uhhh…come again?” (when you can’t hear someone, it’s always hilarious to say this)
“Will you let me get on the roof?”
“No. Why would you want to get on the roof? DANGER!” (sometimes I talk to my kids like they only understand single-worded sentences)
“SO I can raise both hands in the sky and look up and yell, “WWHHHYYYY???? WHY?!?!?!?!?”
I laughed but I totally didn’t mean to. Maria was still crying at this point. Jamie was laughing because he thought he was hilarious. Alice was crying, not because Obi died but because I wasn’t going to rush out and replace Obi with another bunny.
“Jamie. Go away. Alice, go with him.”
Oh, and this incident is right on the heels of yet another animal death in our lives. One of our hens. Felicity the young red hen (one of the ONLY ones that has been consistently laying lately) was killed by what we are pretty sure was a raccoon. There were 2 holes dug under the pen fence and her very disgustingly mangled body was pretty much torn apart (feathers everywhere) and left for a midnight snack. Maria didn’t shed any tears over this one which surprised me like you wouldn’t believe.
Basically, we’re on an animal break. We’ve lost too many in the last couple seasons to consider replacing any of them. How awful is that?! Are we that family??
Don’t answer that.