Snugly Bundles of Love Bring Life to Grief

Photo of Max the cat in the dryer

Max in the dryer

I’d like you to meet this little guy—well, actually he’s not so little! His name is Max, and he’s around fifteen pounds of pure love and limitless curiosity. He’s like a toddler on the move, poking his head (and his paws) into, behind, and underneath anything that looks interesting or new. This photo captured him sneaking into the dryer just as we started loading it with clothes! We never know where we’ll find Max next. When discovered, he always looks at us as if to say, “What?”

My daughter presented Max and his little sister Molly to me a while after my husband died. I wasn’t used to an empty, silent house. All life seemed to have gone away. Explaining what these two little critters brought back into my life and home is hard to put into words. Energy. Delight. Playfulness. Warmth. Anticipation. Love.

Picture of the cat named Meadow


My experience is not unique. The same was true for my mom, brother, mother-in-law, and countless others after the loss of a loved one. None of them thought they wanted a pet. In fact, they were pretty sure they didn’t! But the people around them were persuasive! Each soon discovered a secret that pet owners have known for years. Pets have a curious way of melting your heart. Somehow, before you even know what’s happened, they’ve wiggled their way into your life and set up shop!

The emotional benefit of pets, especially during difficult times (such as grief or loss), is underestimated. See the related article in the L.A. Times.

Consider finding your own Max and Molly! Or Sammy, Josie, Abby, Jackson, Meadow, Maggie, or KC—each one has a unique, endearing personality; each has quirky little habits; and every single one has stolen the heart of its owner.

Most likely you have stories of your own to tell, too!

© 2011 Judy Brizendine

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