Kids and the Passing on of Pets

A couple of months ago, the family Goldfish died. As adults, losing fish is not a big thing and not shocking either. But, when it happened, and Kyle and Charlize noticed, we had to explain what happened. It was a little rough on them -but mainly Kyle- who couldn’t understand why Fishy had to “go”.

We explained as best we could the truths of the circle of life, and how long animals live, etc. He knew getting another fish would not be like having “his” fish back but I tried to get through to him how they’re kind of all related.

The thing is, with his Daycare Guardian’s mother passing on a few months before, Kyle had become a bit more sensitive to Death. Sensitive in the sense that he would be impacted by seeing his Guardian sad and crying for weeks after.

Anyhow, a little while after Fishy was flushed to rest, we would sometimes catch Kyle saying hello and good-bye to Fishy. I finally understood that he would do this whenever he saw the moon (either at night or early morning).

“Kyle, why do you talk to Fishy on the moon?”

“Because Fishy is in Heaven. And Heaven is in the sky. And the moon is in the sky.”

Cute logic and it helped him have a “physical” object he could see as being a resting place so we were okay with it.

Well, tonight we’re going to have to tell him that another Pet in the family, this time Kimmie, a Bichon Maltese belonging to Chantale’s parents, passed away this morning. Kimmie turned 15 years old yesterday and besides being practically deaf and undsteady on her feet, always seemed to be in good spirits. But 15 years is a heck of a long time for a Bichon and it was her turn to go. All the adults knew this was going to be her last year, but I don’t think they expected it to happen while my mother-in-law was getting ready to go to work this morning.

Have fun chasing squirrels “on the moon” Kimmie.

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