Goodbye Max (And Reflections On Death)

Max the old dog just died three days ago, and I’m trying not to mourn because I am the one who has to do the dirty work of preparing him for burial and burying him in a place where he can rest and go back to nature with dignity.

I have had the secret job of being pet undertaker since I was in elementary school and that has taught me to remain detached for certain period of time, and to only mourn when no one else is looking, because vulnerability is a precious thing and I don‘t want anyone intending me harm to see. 

When my wife’s father died some ten years ago, I helped carry his casket to the airport early in the morning and helped ship it to his hometown in South Cotabato. I was the one tasked to break the news on the phone to his mother and brother even if they have not met me personally.

If this was the Harry Potter universe, I’d be seeing thestrals now and get to be friends with Luna Lovegood. So yeah, I am a really slow mourner and it takes a while for someone’s death to sink in my consciousness because death, whether human or non-human, is a constant in my life.


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