It’s been a week since Henry left us. Exactly one week since that awful day.
Now, I think of him running happily, somewhere in the great beyond. A few days after he passed, I learned of the Rainbow Bridge, where it seems all dogs go and wait for their owners. It’s comforting to believe in—and wouldn’t be too far off from my idea that he’s running around in the spectacular somewhere.
But then something rather extraordinary happened that made me wonder if it could be true, this Rainbow Bridge.
It was almost sunset and Oliver and I were walking home from the park. It had occurred to me that this particular day was the first day that I hadn’t cried since Henry’s passing. I take solace in thinking he is somehow still nearby, watching over us.
In fact, when Oliver and I are out walking, it helps me to think that Henry is walking a few steps behind us. Following along at his own pace. Only he no longer has to wear a leash. Though I can’t see him, I feel his presence.
As we reached home, the sky ahead of us seemed to be ablaze in a kaleidoscope of colors–magenta, fuschia, blood orange. Colors that lit up the sky.
I began taking photos of the sunset with my phone. And then something made me turn around and look to the east. My jaw dropped and my eyes lit up with joy.
In the midst of a gray sky was a rainbow. An incredible, breathtaking rainbow, bedecked in fantastical, neon technicolor. A wondrous sight to behold!
Henry! I just knew in that moment that this rainbow was a gift from Henry. Keep in mind, we haven’t had rain. Not a drop. And yet this astounding rainbow, represented the glory of something greater than us.
A sign? Yes. I truly believe that Henry was letting us know that he made it to the Rainbow Bridge. I took a few pictures, until in a flash the rainbow was gone.
Thank you, Henry. Thank you for this gift, reminding me how much you loved us, and we you. Thank you for letting us know you are no longer in pain. Thank you, too, for your brilliance all these years. For showing me that although my children may be grown and out of the house, I still have you and Oliver to love. And love you I do, with all my heart, with all my soul.
Thank you for our life together–12 years, one month and six days. I will cherish them always. And for being my little prince. My Henry the Brave, Henry the Magnificent and now, Henry my Angel.
Aww Monica. This is so beautiful and heartfelt. How luck that Henry got loved and loved you back Infinitely. Love is eternal from where it comes and from where it goes. Be happy. 🤗
Thank you, Gina. Henry was my first dog and I never imagined it could hurt this much, his passing I mean. It’s been four weeks and I think of him everyday. He was a good dog. A fine dog.
This is so beautiful, Monica! Henry was the sweetest guy and you gave him a luxurious life fit for a king. You were lucky to have each other. xoxo
Thanks Clare. I don’t though. I find myself doubting myself, wishing I’d done more for guy. He was a good dog and he deserved a good life. I wish he could’ve told me if it was good enough. Sigh.
Right now, I’m sitting here with misty eyes, Monica. Just when we’re feeling our worst, something wonderful can happen to bring us comfort and reassurance. What a beautifully written (and photographed) testament to that.
Thanks, Pat. I’m taking the rest of this week off to give me time to reflect and also heal. Hope we can talk more. You are a great comfort to me always.
I remember when I first learned of the Rainbow Bridge after my beautiful orange cat Maestro died, the poem brought me to tears and yet it was comforting, too. Not a day has gone by that I haven’t thought of you and your loss. Yes, Monica, don’t ever hold back your tears, it’s natural in grieving, and your splendid dog was truly beautiful. I hope there will be many more rainbows and rainbow connections. S3nding so much warmth your way. Also, I hope Oliver is doing okay.
Maestro is a beautiful name for a dog. How long has it been? How were you able to move on? For me, it’s barely been two weeks and I have a feeling it will be a long time before I heal. Too many memories, too many Henry moments fill my home. I had no idea my sorrow could be so strong. Time is what I need.
Sniff, sniff, this one’s brought me to happy tears, Monica. I’m glad you found some comfort in the Rainbow Bridge poem, and I’m even gladder Sir Henry managed to orchestrate a rainbow sign of his own!
Yes, I absolutely believe God sends us “proof” when we need it most that there’s a Great Beyond after life here. And what a spectacular rainbow — the colors are magnificent (even through a cell phone!), and it looks like it spanned a full half-circle. Love the photo of your son and Henry, too. He’s like Domer — they grew up with these dogs and had their own special friendship. I suspect lots of your neighbors, too, are missing Henry — I know I still miss some of the doggins Dallas and I used to see on our regular walkies.
Hang in there, my sad friend. Remember, it’s okay to cry and grieve because Henry was a big part of your life. Hugs from me and Dallas!
The Rainbow Bridge is a beautiful story. It gives me comfort to imagine him there, playing and napping and eating his favorite treats. My sweet boy. Hug Dallas for me. He’s a good dog, too.
He gets LOTS of hugs because he’s such a good boy!
Many things happen in life Monica that we have no explanation for.
But I like your reason for the rainbow, young Henry was an intelligent dog, according to Oliver he took after his owner!!
You might just be right with the rainbow.
Take care Monica.
Thank you, Robert. I know how this is something you don’t believe in, but I appreciate your words and that you understand this is what gives me comfort. There’s no bringing him back, and that breaks my heart. But at least I have this small bit of hope that he’s okay. That he is somewhere I cannot see him or hold him. I cling to this, I want to feel his presence. I want to believe! Because no matter what people tell me, that I did so much for him and gave him a home, shelter, I will always live with this regret: I didn’t do enough. I wasn’t the best I could be for him when he was always–always–the best for us. He didn’t ask for much and I was too damn busy with my life, my work, my activities, to notice. So I hope he’s having a good time at that Rainbow Bridge. I hope he feels that he was loved. He was my first dog, and he was a good dog. He cut me a lot of slack. Honestly. Never bit anyone, not a mean bone in his body. Not aggressive at all. Just kind. When people would bend down to pet him, he reveled in their touch. He had a lot of friends in this neighborhood and beyond, and is missed by quite a few. 12 years 1 month, 6 days. I will always treasure his time spent here, with Oliver and me.