Nature Friday ~ March 6, 2020

Tomorrow marks the two-week mark since beloved Sam left this mortal world. It’s been a painful time with lots of ups and down for both me and the dogs. Just as it seems like things are getting better, something will trigger a bout of tears and it feels like any progress made has been erased. While I realize this is all normal in the grief process, they are still upsetting.

Sam has come home now and I find myself staring at his remains for long periods of time, recalling past memories. Some are funny, some are more of the ‘I can’t believe you just did that’ and others are ones that make my heart swell with loving pride. It’s easy to go the full spectrum as I stare at the carved box.

Just before Sam came home, on one of our many walks during the mild spring-like weather, I happened to look down. Not sure if it was because it was the first sign of spring that caught my attention or the fact that there was a white feather next to it, but the one thing I was certain of was that it was a sign from Angel Sam reaching out. Tears formed in my eyes but then a smile appeared. The dogs and I stood there quietly for a few moments knowing our favorite Knucklehead had sent us a message. The dogs seemed to pick up the pace with joyous steps once we continued on the walk.

Sam, RIP

While I do not consider myself religious, I do think I’m pretty spiritual. Throughout the world, different cultures subscribe to slightly different explanations on what finding a white feather means. Yet, it seems the explanation is mostly consistent across the board. The symbolism of the white feather is generally thought of a sign of the presence of an angel. When you find one, it is thought that one of your angels just visited you within the physical realm and it’s an opportunity to say a prayer of thanks for their support.

It’s also thought that finding a white feather is a sign that a loved one is watching over you from the spirit realm. While that is certainly plausible, it can also be their desire to make contact with you. Either way, when you find a feather, you’ll likely feel a familiar energy, similar to the one we experienced. Finding a white feather is seen as a good omen and reminds us to stay strong, positive, and optimistic.

No matter whatever life throws at you, finding a white feather is viewed as a symbol that can provide a sense of comfort. And in this instance, it was as if Sam were leaning against my leg, wagging his tail and gazing deeply into my eyes like he often did when alive and there was great comfort in that moment.

While news this week has been heartbreaking and disturbing (our thoughts are with the folks of Tennessee and pray the situation surrounding the Corona-virus gets under control), we hope you seek and find comfort this weekend.

Please remember to ‘spring forward’ for Daylight Savings Time which arrives this weekend. We will be envious of those of you who live in Hawaii, parts of Arizona and Indiana who have the good sense not to go through this stupid time change.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

69 thoughts on “Nature Friday ~ March 6, 2020

  1. Oh, Monika… what a beautiful post. I like to think that feather next to that pale flower was definitely a nod from Sam.
    The time needed to go through the grief process is the time needed.

  2. OMG, Monika! I noticed Sam’s name conspicuously missing from your post and went searching I guess a bit hopeful but I guess knowing that he’d passed.
    I’m so sorry andsend my love and hugs!!
    It is a strange thing blogging with people you haven’t met, but know so personally and every time I see a big white poodle, I thought of Sam over there in Denver a world away experiencing the polar opposite of which ever season we had here. I loved him very much.
    After losing Bilbo, I really pondered why dogs have such accelerated lives. Bilbo came to us when our daughter was amost a year old and she was crawling. They actually seemed to be about the same stage of development. Yet, before she had even started high school, he’d accelerated through middle age, old age and passed away. So hard to understand and accept.
    I like the idea of the white feather. I hadn’t heard that before. During WWI, men who didn’t enlist in Australia were given white feathers as a sign of cowardice. Did that happen over your way as well?
    Well, now it’stime for my Nanna nap.
    Much love,
    Rowena

    1. Thank you, Row. Yes my beloved Sam left this mortal world two weeks ago. It’s been so tough on the dogs and me and I don’t know how I could have gotten through it with the loving support of the blogging community. I’ve been overwhelmed by it and will always be grateful. As for the feather story in WWI, I’d heard about that cowardice equivalency but don’t know if it was prevalent here in the US. I wasn’t familiar with white feather story that was shared by a dear friend. I looked it up and it’s pretty consistent in different cultures. It really touched my heart and am convinced it was Angel Sam letting me know he was good and everything will be ok. I trust that sigh and hope I see more signs from him in the future. Miss him so much but glad he was able to go on his own terms. This was his last gift to me.

      1. I remember how we were after Bilbo passed away. I just felt like all the glue holding me together, suddenly washed away and I was in disconnected pieces, if that makes any sense. I found a big weighted border collie in a shop and bought him home and he sat on my lap and felt real and he also helped the kids and he was in our son’s room for a bit. Having written so much about him , added to the loss too. He’d become such a part of me and we’d had him since our daughter was a year old so the kids had grown up with him. He will always have a special place because of that.

        1. How well I know those feelings you experienced. Elsa struggles one day and then gets chummy with Norman. Think she’s looking for some emotional comfort from him. They’ve been hanging together much more this week.

          1. It’s just as well you already had Norman when Sam passed. It must be hard for her. I remember Lady peering over into Bilbo’s grave and she seemed to be willing him to get up. C’mon. up you get. I can’t imagine what it will be like when one of the pups passes. They’re almost like conjoined twins. They go everywhere together. They’re so sweet.
            Take care and I’m thinking of you.
            Best wishes,
            Rowena

  3. they day they “come home” is always heartbreaking…I remember it too vividly. That white feather was DEFINITELY Sam telling you he will ALWAYS be with you ((((hugs))))

    1. Having his remains home is somewhat comforting. Focusing on his actual presence provides the canvas that long ago memories paint beautiful images in my heart.

  4. I’d send you one of my feathers but they’re all blue and I don’t want to make you blue. A couple of days after Kyla left us, a rare rainbow appeared. Kyla sent it instead of a white feather.

    1. Agreed. The process will take a long time and he’ll never be out of my thoughts or heart.

  5. That was a wonderful sign, Monika. Angel Sam will be always with you, even if you don’t see him and the only way to let you know is to show you that through the signs of the Angels👼 Soft Pawkisses and a big hug from Granny🐾😽💞

    1. Sam will always be in m heart and when he will show himself to me in signs like this, it will be even better. Many thanks for your kind words.

  6. I had never heard about the significance of a white feather before. It’s funny, the older I get, the more I believe in these alternative [at least to us Westerners] beliefs about spirituality and inner-connectedness of a sort of life force. For instance, I’ve taken a lot of flak over the years for “rescuing” bugs – but it wasn’t until about 5 years or so ago when I read something about a universal life force that I understood why I do that. Years ago, I had a college professor who was seriously offended by my faith in God. He insisted we believe in a Supreme Being for comfort and to make it through hard times. I pointed out that my perception is that the Supreme Being is always trying to connect with us – but we are often too busy in our lives to pay attention – and we’re just more receptive to listen when we are struggling. He didn’t find it the least bit of hypocrisy that he believed in the Gods of a Native population in South America. The judgment of this man was off the charts – but in the end I wasn’t willing to fall in the same trap. I think the minute details of the Being or Beings is less important than the overall concept and who’s to say whose “details” are right?

    1. You are most wise with your beliefs Mamakat as well as compassionate. A friend told me about the white feather; I never knew about it before either.

  7. Two weeks is no time at all. Allow yourself to grieve as you need to, to smile and laugh at the memories as you recall your wonderful knucklehead. I’m so glad you recognized the feather for its possibilities. I’m glad you and Elsa and Norman (is that right?) have each other to lean on. Amy

    1. I continue to look for signs from across the Bridge which will manifest in all sorts of way. Elsa and Norman (you got it correct) seem to be getting better with each day. It’s the upright in this equation that will take longer.

    1. Yes, I do believe they manage to communicate with us. We just have to be prepared to ‘listen’ and ‘see’ their messages.

  8. I am so glad Sam was able to send you that sign. Getting those is SO comforting. ♥ I did not know that about white feathers, but I’m glad to know it now.
    Oh, I am not looking forward to the time change. I know most people are excited to have the evenings stay light longer, but I enjoy having the light earlier in the morning since I’m an early riser. Oh well, maybe someday the rest of the country will get smarter too! 🙂

    1. It was the perfect sign that day; I hope there are more. Like you, I’m no fan of DST; it seems so outdated and unnecessary. Hopefully one of these days perhaps politicians will recognize it’s no longer useful or necessary.

  9. Sam visited you, Elsa and Norman….he will always be with you. This time is very difficult but is needed to heal. A white feather is such a positive sign. Sorry, I get so choked up…

    Hugs,

    Jean

    1. By getting choked up, it means you’re a kind and loving human with a heart. And that’s pretty special in my books.

  10. Am I the only one who thought of Forrest Gump and that movie’s ending? That was the first time I heard about the notion of angels and feathers. I’m told that to the spiritual, the synchronicity reflects freedom and flight but dumb and literal ‘ole me thought the feathers fell out of the angels wings, a kind of divine littering, so to speak. Nevertheless, I like the idea of beloved Sammy sending the message that he is happy and at peace in whatever world may exist beyond. Methinks Will Rogers nailed when he said, “If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went.” My bet is Sam will be there, ready for Round 2.

    1. I will admit I was unfamiliar with the white feather notion but am convinced it was Sam letting me know in my grief he was in a good place and just like he did on earth will be waiting by the door for my arrival. Will Rogers knew a thing a two about the value of dogs.

    1. Yup, he’ll always be near and dear in my heart and hopefully will send me love messages from heaven.

  11. A lovely post and images. So honest.

    After losing two beloved dogs within six weeks of each other, in 2014, I was initially at a loss over what to do with their cremains. Then inspiration struck: I carried the girls’ remains into the forest with me (my third and remaining dog keeping me company that summer), running on trails they helped me explore and where I had taken photos of them over the years. I built a handful of small cairns off the side of these trails and left some of their remains with each, returning them to the forest they loved. Now, every time my dogs and I run by those cairns, I tell the girls, “I love you, I miss you, thank you. See you soon!”

    I find special comfort and delight in finding the cairns each spring after their long winter snooze.

    Thankfully, our beloved dogs are always with us, in our memories and our hearts.

    1. I love the idea of a cairn and may build one in the north corner of the garden that Sam liked to frequent. You’re so right, their spirits are always with us in our hearts.

  12. I’m glad your sweet Sam visited you, Elsa, and Norman. I’m convinced he came to tell you he’s okay and watching over you. I’ve never seen a white feather that I can remember, but I’ve definitely had several visits from Kissy, Callie, Shadow, and Radar. The latest visit was from my 3 Golden Angels yesterday. And I believe Ducky felt their presence as well.

    My heart is with you all. I still have leaky-eye moments over Radar, and less frequently over Shadow. It’s part of the healing process. Warm, gentle hugs to you all from Ducky and me. 🤗🤗🤗

    1. The healing takes time, and in some cases, longer time with those that touch our hearts. Living in the city, I rarely see feathers but am convinced it was Sam’s saying he was good and watching over us.

  13. Oh Monika, I’m so very, very sorry. I’ve been a bit out of touch lately so I somehow missed this. I know you will miss him terribly, you were a wonderful team and you did so much together. Those special ones remain in our hearts forever 💕💕 big hugs to you and your other two furries. 😘

    1. Many thanks for the kind condolences. Hope all is well on your end. I have missed seeing your girls and hope you’re just busy. You are so right, the special ones are deep in our hearts.

  14. What a lovely photo Monika! In my culture seeing a white feather IS the Spirit sending a message from beyond to let us know they are safe & watching over us. I put tobacco down circling the feather & then pick feather up to keep (Of course I sterilize any feathers I DO pick up).
    I know how difficult this time of transition is for you. And you ARE making progress….we each find our own way thru the grief. Take your time. And remember Knucklehead Sam is never far from you in spirit……
    <3 <3 & {{hugs}} Sherri-Ellen & **purrss** BellaDharma

    1. Thank you, Cristina. Hopefully our warm sunny weekend will arrive in your part of the country in the next few days.

  15. We have a shrine for our Little Bit. This coming October will be 5 years since she went to the bridge. We still visit her shrine often.

    Big healing hugs, my friend. ♥

  16. I have had many animals over the years, and have had most cremated. I had a full shelf of boxes. Last year I got a metal outdoor table, and a couple of black schist memorial rocks made by a local artist. I set it up near a tree, where I didn”t water and nothing grew. I put 2 pots of kalanchoe (needs very little water and blooms almost constantly) on the table. I go out periodically and distribute ashes around the table, I think I have 8 boxes left. They can gossip to each other about silly mom and enjoy their beloved yard, and I can think about my beloved pets while having a good cry.

    1. A dear friend of mine passed along the belief that white feathers found are angels visiting us. I was unaware before and it was very comforting.

  17. I love this idea. The white feather reminds me of a story Paul McCartney told about what he experienced after Linda passed. He said he heard an owl hooting that night and took it as a sign from her. He found great comfort in it.

  18. I feel Sam’s loss too, and this lovely post has me crying again with you. Thank you for writing this.
    Love to all, and may Sam’s love continue to shine from the other side.

    1. Thank you for the loving support. I know that Sam will always make his sweet presence known.

  19. Very sweet. I’m so glad you are paying attention to your grieving and letting it be with you. I know Sam is watching over all of you, and I’m glad you sense his presence.

    1. Without paying attention, you just don’t make peace with a loss. It may be painful as all get-out, but a valuable part of the process.

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