At the end of August, my wife got our daughters two guinea pigs, CeeCee, a teddy bear so named because she was, in my younger daughter's words, "cute and cuddly", and Cali, short for "calico", which she is. This morning, my wife woke me up at quarter to nine to tell me that CeeCee had gone on to that great vegetable patch in the sky. When the girls got home from school, we told them, allowed Miriam to see her body, then buried her in a shoe box, with a note Miriam had written to her put inside. My wife said a wonderful prayer, then tossed dirt on the box.
Now, while Miriam grieves the loss of little CeeCee, who was a little pistol, sitting on your chest and biting your nose if you weren't careful, she almost immediately said, "Can I get another guinea pig?" In a couple weeks, when we're sure she didn't die of some dread, communicable guinea pig ailment, we will most assuredly purchase another Asian ground rat for her to love and care for.
Some good thoughts, please, for Miriam, as she learns to grieve for the first time. Better a guinea pig than a parent, in my view. . .