Thursday, April 22, 2010

The saddest picture I have ever seen

Why is a picture of a fat red dog with a chewed up milk carton so sad?
This reminds me of a scrapbooking class I took on journaling. The teacher explained that journaling about a picture was like an onion-there are layers. And the core is the part that makes you cry the most. Each person in the class had a picture, and we used them to learn how to journal the different layers. I will never forget one woman’s core-what looked like a cute picture of a little girl was really a testament to how wrong a Doctor’s predictions and expectations can be. Not a dry eye in the room.

Here are the layers of this picture.

Layer 1- Sheena in the backyard, 10 years old

Layer 2- Sheena, 10 years old, in the backyard playing with Sadie and Sheena’s favorite toy, an empty milk carton

Layer 3-Sheena in the backyard, a few weeks before she died, possibly the last picture taken of her.

Core-Sheena I miss you. You were all the things a dog is supposed to be to a person. You were the only one who was always ecstatic to see me, always willing to drop anything to be with me. I regret so much about the way you died. I wish that when Mom and Dad told me you had been hit by a car I had said to put you to sleep, and not thought of my own desire to say goodbye. You were such a good girl, you didn’t deserve to die in agony. It’s so selfish and wrong, but I’m still relived that I wasn’t there when you did die, that my last memory of you is your head resting on my lap, your soft ears absorbing my tears as they had done so many times before. But this time was different, because I had never cried about you. When I realized that afternoon that you were holding on for me, or maybe the whole family, I had to tell you it was okay for you to die. That I would never forget you, would always love you, and never stop missing you. Oh, Sheena, I would ask you to forgive me, but I know you, and you already have.

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