This was what the Vet said to me when I asked: “how would you carry him?” She replied, “well, we will put him in this plastic bag… I won’t recommend you to see it… but, you know, in the end… it is just his body….”
I’m quite sure she didn’t mean in a bad way. In fact, it is just the body anyway when you believe there is something else somewhere out there once you leave this physical world. But the idea of having him, my beloved companion for the past 13 years been referred as “just a body = skin and bones”, made me even sadder than I was.
I left the room and retreated myself. I didn’t want to see him carried away in a plastic bag. Then it came to my mind one section of Steven Covey’s book (The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People) which 3 years ago hit me quite hard, and made me ‘re-analyze’ how I was leading my life. I will share some extracts of it with you:
“ … Picture yourself going to the funeral of a loved one… As you walk inside the building, you see faces of friends and family you pass along the way. You feel share sorrow of losing, the joy of having known, that radiates from the hearts of the people there.
As you walk down to the front of the room and look inside the casket, you suddenly come face to face with yourself. This is your funeral, three years from today. All these people have come to honor you, to express feelings of love and appreciation for your life.
… you look the program in your hand. There are to be four speakers. The first is from your family… The second speaker is one of your friends…. The third speaker is from your work or profession… And the forth is from your church or some community organization where you’ve been involved in service.
Now think deeply. What would you like each of these speakers to say about you and your life? What kind of husband, wife, father, mother… son, daughter, cousin...friend… working associate?
What kind of character would you like them to have seen in you? What contributions… achievements would you like them to remember?... What difference would you like to have made in their lives?...”
And the big question was: “Are you leading your life, through your actions and behaviors, to achieve that? To be remembered, and valued the way you would like to?...”
My most loved Chico had gone. Although I could say that he had truly lived his life in a way that he could only be remembered as the most joyful, trustworthy, loyal and honest friend ever; for the ones who knew him he could only be remembered at utmost level of character integrity; still, for someone who didn’t know him, he was just a body….
Which made me to realise that when we reach the end of this physical life, for some people, no matter what, we will be just ‘a body’; easily disposable…
But it also reinforced to me that, if you lead your life with integrity, and honesty to yourself above all, once you leave this world I’m positive that there will be more of you than a body to be remembered in someone’s heart.
To my beloved Chico who left us the past Friday, August 17th.
You will always be in my heart ‘bola’!