Explaining Hard Topics to Your Children and Yourself

Yesterday was an odd day.  A day of hard questions, answers, and yet we did the day together…as a family.  Families do the hard days and easy days together.  By the grace of God we move through the hard into life lessons learned.

We decided to pass on going to church yesterday.  It was a holiday weekend, and we decided we would spend the day as a family.  I suggested we could “be the church” instead of “attending church.”  My husband and I talked about what we could do with the day.  Earlier this week we adopted a stray un-neutered male cat from another neighborhood…you know the sweet looking cat on Facebook that nobody wanted for their own?!  Yes, picture this…


This tom cat was a beautiful cat, but he was wild.  He had been living outdoors for some time in another neighborhood and not really getting along with other cats or having an owner to be found.  Since our cat died last month, we were waiting for the right time to fill that loss with a new pet.  The kids, my husband, and I loaded up mid week and visited the cat at a home 0.9 miles from ours (the classmate of our third grade son Addison) lived there.  They had been feeding “Stripes” for a few days.  They wanted to find a home for him…and we wanted a cat.  This could work.  We knew he was un-neutered so we took him home to our enclosed back patio, and let him roam, hide, and warm up to us for a few days.  He would let us pet him, but he wasn’t drinking water well.  He liked milk, ate well, and was gentle…he liked to nuzzle your hand in a fist bump shape.  So we dubbed him “Baymax.”  (If you haven’t seen Big Hero Six by Disney…check it out).


Yesterday we chose to take Baymax to a local animal shelter that provides vet services at low cost.  Plus they were open on Sunday…seven days a week…perfect.  My thought was that we were loving on one of God’s creatures and providing him with vet services.   We waited an hour just to get in, and then we waited another hour for test results from his labs.  We watched Beethoven in the waiting room twice.  Then we received the bad news.  Baymax had FIV Feline immunodeficiency virus which is common in un-neutered male cats that roam.  FIV is not transferrable to humans, but it can be transmitted to other cats.  Our choice was to get him fixed, and train him to be an indoor only cat or euthanize him.  So…two tough topics to explain to our nine and six year old boys.

We talked through their questions, our questions, and the vet was very understanding and empathetic.  We chose to euthanize Baymax.  He would not be able to be left for adoption at the shelter.  We could not take on the responsibility of domesticating a cat or enduring the attachment and loss of another pet.  But, we did.  We chose to lose Baymax in favor of him joining Callie our cat in heaven.  We prayed with our kids.  I prayed silently.  My husband and I cried.  This is not what we envisioned for our day.  However, the truth is there are hard topics to explain to children and yourself.

4aa14688f915cba2200335b34346716b Photo Link

Dear God,

You give warm hugs.

I’m satisfied with my care.

Please be with us as we grieve loss.



2 thoughts on “Explaining Hard Topics to Your Children and Yourself

  1. Oh golly Jennifer, what a moving post. I’m so happy that Baymax (brilliant name) finally found such a loving family. But I’m sorry for your loss. Really I am, very hard to explain to your boys. But it sounds like Baymax needed you, and there you all were; God’s Glory in the Glimmers of His Grace.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s