Friday, May 24, 2013

We Lost a Lot of Good Men that Day

In Remembrance of Three Good Fish

We came home from work and school Wednesday with Blaze floating fins up in the fish bowl. The water was a little cloudy, so it was hard to tell where he was at first. That was Big Chickadee's fish so she was crying and doing a lot of blaming - basically going through the stages of grief. She blamed the L'il Chicken Hawk for the death, saying he put his hand in the bowl, moved the rock structure thus cutting off Blaze's fin so he couldn't swim.

I swiped up the tiny corpse in a paper towel, she petted him and we said a prayer and said our goodbyes. Then we flushed ol' Blaze down the toilet. Here are some of the condolences I gave, "He lived a good life." "We lost a lot of good men that day." "He gave us such joy." "We will remember him fondly." Daddy-O tried hard not to laugh, but I took it pretty seriously; dealing with death and showing kids how to grieve is an important right of passage.

I then set about putting fresh water in the bowl and creating a clean environment for the remaining two fish, Diesel and Elvis. After that, Elvis freaked out swimming from the top of the bowl to the bottom in a frenetic manner. I think he was concerned for his fallen comrade. Sadly, the next morning when we woke up and went to feed them, both Diesel and Elvis were lying fins up at the bottom of the bowl. Dead from broken hearts.

So we notified their next of kin, L'il Chickadee and L'il Chicken Hawk, and they took it fairly well. I saw a little tear in my daughter's eye when we flushed them down the toilet after the prayer. She told me, "I'm going to tell Mackenzie at school," with a sad little sniff. We all had heavy hearts that morning.

As I expected, the fish were a distant memory by the end of the day. They each took a peek in the fish tank as they walked by and saw their little guppies were still gone - swimming wild and free in ocean heaven by now. I had drained all the water out and left the pretty bowl out for a nice display. In my heart of hearts, I'm relieved we don't have to worry about getting a fish-sitter for the weekend when we're out of town, but keep that on the D.L.

Their lives with us were short - May 12 - May 22, 2013 - a total of 10 days. We will never forget you Blaze, Diesel and Elvis!  R.I.P.
Three Good Fish in Their Glory Days
Happy Memorial Day!

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