When having kids and animals there comes a time when a family pet goes to heaven and as a parent you have to tell your little ones. This is how my day started, October 17th,2022 I woke up and started my daily routine, get the girls up and in the shower once they had fresh clothes and diapers on we headed into the living room where I did a light pick up from the night before and make my rounds to feed our animals. A slight check in the food bowl for our bubbles the parakeet and than a pinch of food for our Elsa sparkles beta fish.
That’s when I noticed, the cloudy eyes, floating at the top of the water side ways, gills not moving and her body simply still. I didn’t want to believe it so I tapped her tank and she didn’t move, I moved her bowl a slight water ruffle and she just went with the flow,literally. My heart hurt so bad because I knew the girls would be sad. I went the whole day not saying a simple word about Elsa sparkles, I didn’t know how Paighton would take it and I surely didn’t want Emmalynn to be crying.
So I waited till Peyton got home to have this important conversation with our girls. I believe that in any situation the first time you bring up death needs to be a safe place and experience for them, even if it’s a fish. I started to think of ways on how I should tell them and how I should validate their feelings on this sad journey. Peyton and I were on our way to feed my horses when we started the conversation about the fish. I told the girls that Elsa sparkles had to go to heaven to be with Jesus. At first P didn’t understand and said “mommy don’t be silly,Elsa sparkles is in her tank”. As a mom I’m trying to answer all of her questions and truly just listen to what she has to say. Now Paighton wasn’t sad, she just kept asking me questions and I kept asking her if she was okay. Emmalynn on the other hand didn’t really have much to say or show any emotions.
After about 10 minutes of confusion Peyton simply said to Paighton, do you understand what going to heaven means?
It means your fish died!
My heart sank.
So straight forward I was upset because I didn’t want this moment to be a brush off of feelings. I wanted our girls to understand the way they felt was normal. It was normal to feel sad and cry when a family pet goes to heaven. I don’t want them growing up and having no emotions to death.
Till this happened,
We get home from feeding my horses and having dinner at my moms. It’s late, we are getting ready for our family show and to just sit down and relax. I’m in our bedroom and Peyton starts calling for me.
“Good Prank Carm”
Now I’m seriously confused, we don’t do pranks anymore because simple we are awful at them and they tend to be more embarrassing than funny. Peyton starts calling me more and says,
“Carm she’s alive”
I started running out of our bedroom to the kitchen up to the tank where I still see a lifeless fish. Confused and now upset at the fact he got my hopes up.
But to a beta fish miracle Peyton taps on the aquariums glass and she starts to swim around. He said you just have to restart her. Emotions of the whole day started to flow I was happy but sad because I told the girls that their fish had died when reality her water was just way too cold which caused her body to basically go in a sleep state.
I guess on the bright side my girls know about life and death and when the day comes where their animals do pass they will know that heaven is real and they are safe with Jesus.
What a day I’ve had!