Missing Missy, but also thankful

Published 3:06 pm Wednesday, March 20, 2024

By Jan Penton Miller
The loneliness was palpable. It seemed that so much had happened. I lost my parents, my baby
went away to college, and then, my sweet hubby passed away all within a short time. After a
brief and very unhealthy relationship my emotions were raw.
That’s when my brother, Paul, took me to find my little dachshund, Missy. Actually, I bought two
puppies, Missy and Prissy, home that day. My brother knew that it was harder to be sad with
puppies in the house.
I don’t really have very long stretches of memory when I haven’t had a pet so these two joined
the ranks of many who had gone before them. Missy and Prissy were as different as daylight
and dark.
Missy was always one to jump on the porch furniture and stay nearby while Prissy was a
squirrel dog. Prissy treed squirrels all over my property in the country. Slowly but surely I gave
my heartbreak to the One who created me, and healing began, but it didn’t come quickly or
easily. Grief is difficult, and each of us deals with loss a little differently.
Books have been written on the subject, but it is a very personal thing.
All this talk of hurt and healing because this has been a tough week for me. I’ve actually been
dreading this time for a while, because I saw it coming. My sweet little friend and companion,
Missy, was with me when my brother, Paul, died unexpectedly a few years ago so she walked
with me through that also.
She literally sat in a chair with me for a couple of years when I developed crippling arthritis and
avoided surgery for too long. She walked slowly by my side as I rehabbed after two hip
replacements, but soon we were both moving at a good clip.
The past couple of years Missy was the one who moved slowly, but I adjusted to her pace just
as she had to mine. Missy morphed into a grouchy old lady, as her health failed her, but I still
hated to let her go. She was 14 years old and loved her person, food, and napping not
necessarily in that order.
I woke up one day last week and knew it was time. It was very hard to say goodbye to my friend
and snuggle buddy, Missy, but I felt it would be selfish to keep her any longer. The house is a lot
quieter now. When I’m away from home I catch myself thinking I need to hurry back to see
about her, but then I remember.

I don’t know where Missy is or if she exists, but I would certainly love to see her again. When
asked about what happens to our pets the late Billy Graham said this, “Heaven will be a place of
perfect happiness for us – and if we need animals around us to make our happiness complete,
then you can be sure God will have them there.”

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox