Last week we went to Best Friends in Kanab, Utah to re-visit where the three of us found each other… It truly is a magical place and not in a fantasyland sense. I had to admit, that it was just as breathtaking as the other times we'd been there the only difference being Rhu was not with us as we had originally planned and, it was a bit stormy on the outside as well as the inside.
When he first passed, our thought was that we'd take his ashes to Angels' Rest at Best Friends but a few days later an overwhelming feeling hit both of us that, right here with us, was his true and forever home. So, unanimously we decided that we were keeping him close by - at least for now.
With heavy hearts we loaded up his cart for what would be the last time. We wanted to donate it to Best Friends where it would serve a greater purpose for other dogs in need . Best Friends outreach programs means they're always in contact with many other shelters and that it would be put to good use.
On the drive to Kanab the weather was gorgeous but became stormier the closer we got toward the actual town. Lightening caught our attention as it was breaking through the dark clouds illuminating everything…followed by a heavy downpour…then a stunningly beautiful, DOUBLE rainbow! Just as fleeting as life, there was no time to get the camera and take a photo but I will never forget it and said, thank you, Rhu....My first sign he was right there with us .
After arriving, we really just wanted to drive around by ourselves to absorb the natural beauty and peacefulness of this amazing place. We circled around the corner on our way to Angels' Overlook and there on the side of the dirt road were 4 beautiful deer…slowing to almost a stop we just quietly stared at their beauty and soaked up the peaceful feeling they brought to us. Another “thank you, Rhu” silently spoke from my heart.
When we arrived at Angels' Rest we'd forgotten about the almost, hypnotizing sound that the hundreds of wind chimes bring. It's like a soft, beautiful, waterfall of love is pouring over you… as if the sweet spirits of all the beloved pets are speaking to you, telling you they are at peace. It was in that moment that we both knew exactly how we would honor Rhu's memory.
We ordered the chimes tuned to the scale of 'D”- All of the wind chimes we learned are tuned to actual keys and their matching scale which is one reason they sound so harmonious. Rhu's chimes will have his picture and an inscription etched into it; “Rhubarb, the star that couldn’t help but shine”… it will be hanging on tree No. 6 to the right of the main entrance.
The rain was softly falling early that morning of his memorial and scaled back to a mere mist by the time the service was to begin. In attendance were some wonderful people who shared their stories of him giving us all such a grasp of the lighthearted spirit that he was. One of the caretakers gifted us with a natural stone that was shaped just like a heart… She said it took quite a while to find! Just like Rhu, one of a kind.
While none of this brings him back, I feel certain it was a wonderful beginning to the eventual healing that will take place. His presence on earth was to reveal to anyone who knew him that all life is about being love, and being happiness. His smile was never anything but genuine and he was proof that no matter what kind of hand you're dealt in life, you can overcome it if you choose to. That will be a lesson I will be contemplating for a quite some time, Rhu.
I still see him in my dreams, I still feel him everywhere I go and I still kiss his picture every morning and every night hoping that I can be just a fraction as kind and giving as he was.