Sunday, December 16, 2012

Stars and Stripes

My eldest son is 10. Last night, we found his pet  hamster still and lifeless, curled up in its little bed, looking to the world to be fast asleep. My son, suddenly glassy eyed, asked me if he was going to be ok. Could I make him ok?

I said I didn't know, but we could try. 
We sat by the fire trying to warm the hamster's little body but, after a while, it was clear (to me) that he was dead.

Because Mark and I were going out and leaving the kids with a babysitter,  I said to my son that maybe  "Stripes" was just hibernating and that if we wrapped him in a warm blanket, maybe in the morning he might wake up.

This morning my son climbed into my bed. Snuggling up, tearful, he said he didn't think Stripes had moved, but he still had hope. Then (because he's the 10 year old he is) he went on to explain how there will always be hope, because that's what Pandora managed to hold on to, when she opened the box and let evil into the world.

Today I have two grieving kids.
It is sad and sorry and natural, and their comprehension of death is one furry wee body snuggled in pet bedding and buried in the corner of the garden.
I want to keep them away from the news.
As ridiculous as it is, I'm glad that tomorrow they don't need to be at school.
But there will be other tomorrows.
I'm grateful that bitch Pandora managed to hold on to something.

Stripes as an action hero...