In my last post on our loss of our beloved China, I mentioned Theo writing a "memoir" on the subject. I hoped then that I would have the opportunity to help him further past the initial draft I had just read at that point. It just didn't happen and holy cow am I glad he tackled this on his own and went further than our expectations (and having him, they're already high). I'm bursting with pride and honor for being given the go ahead to pass this along to my public and beyond, as Theo shares his "old soul" 10 year old words of wisdom in profound and poetic form...
Death and Life
By Theo Harpaz
You’re lucky if you have never seen it. Death...looked Death right in the eyes, seen Death’s face. Looking at you with a secret, evil grin. You’re lucky if you have never heard of Death, thought about what Death is and what Death looks like. But the people that have seen Death, thought about Death, then you know what it is like. You know the strange feeling of Death looking at you. When your chin starts to tremble, you bite your lip. Then Death starts to laugh. I have seen Death. I have just told you a little bit of what Death feels like. It happened a couple of days ago.
She was in the hospital with a blank look in her eyes. Not able to move. She was melting away, into the darkness of Death. She was our family. A sister to me, like no other. When I was born, when I first opened my eyes, I saw her long snout and her wide, curious eyes. She tried to lick me. China was fourteen, an old lady when Death took her. She was still a beautiful dog.
“China! I love you. You were the first thing I saw and I will be the last thing you see.” That was the final thing I said to her. I laid my head on her belly and listened. Listened to her slow, steady heartbeats. Listened to her long, deep breaths. The next moment two women came in the room, one with a needle. The needle was long and sharp, with a pink fluid inside. The first women took the needle and pushed it into China’s leg. That was the first time I heard Death. It was snarling. After that, all I heard was China’s yelling. Her low, old voice.
I looked into her eyes and I didn’t see her anymore. I saw Death. I saw Death’s secret, evil grin. Then Death started to laugh. It laughed while I cried. I cried until I got home. The experience made me mad. Mad at China because she let Death take her. No, I wasn’t mad at China. I was mad at Death. All the anger and confusion made me tired.
I was a baby, looking at China. She licked my face and I felt the curiosity in her. It was all happy. The scene shifted, I was in the hospital holding China. She was a baby again but I was the same age. She was so cute. Then she started to melt away. Away from my grasp and into Death’s. The scene shifted again and I was holding Roody, China’s brother. He looked at me with his deep brown eyes. I saw something... something moving in his eyes. It was China. But not China and Death. China and Life.
Death may be evil, but you learn something from it. Death makes you wiser. Death shows you the path to find Life. Life makes you wiser. If you end up seeing Death, you will find Life. That is what I learned after China died. I found Roody. That cute dog that I haven’t really noticed like I see him now. He has changed. I have changed. We have just begun our journey of Life.