I have always been an animal lover. Since being a little girl I remember connecting deeply with animals and feeling like they understood me. Some of the strongest and most vivid memories I have of being a child involve my pets and animals. When I was about five I remember there was an ant who could not walk because her feet had been squished. I grabbed a little stick and prodded around her legs separating them and lifting her. I did this so meticulously and patiently that it took me about two hours of just devoting myself to helping this little ant. Finally she was always to stand and walked away from me, completely fixed. I felt ecstatic and so accomplished that I was able to help the little ant.

I had a dog named Osa who gave birth to a litter of puppies. It was late at night probably two a.m. in Honduras and my aunt who knew how much I loved animals woke me up so I could be a part of Osa’s birthgiving. I held one of the little puppies as she came out, and as it rained my aunt, uncle, and I sat there with Osa’s new offsprings. I went to bed so happy and excited to play with the puppies. Osa was a mutt and she loved leaving the house and walking around the beach of La Ceiba looking for things she could eat. I had a cat named Michu in Honduras and I absolutely loved her. She was my favorite. Anytime I was sad or cried, Michu was  there to cuddle with me. I remember how close I felt to her being and even though she did not utter one word, her presence comforted me and I felt accepted and understood by another living soul. When Michu was dying I was devastated. I asked the older people in the neighborhood on advice at how to save her. They told me to make a solution out of milk and lime and feed it to her for 3 days. Michu was clearly dying, but after two days of feeding her the solution she got a little better and I thanked god for giving me my friend back. On the third day however, Michu died and I felt like I had not done enough to save her. I buried her under the sand of La Ceiba beach.

When I got to America I had many pets: cats, dogs, hamsters, bunnies, birds. My mother hated animals because she is a really clean person, but because I urged her to have these little critters in my life she tolerated them. I suffered so much from having these animals because they always died too soon, ran away, or my mother gave them away. I decided to not have any pets for a long time because of that.

Last February I decided to adopt a little cat, something I gave thought to for about 8 months. Getting this cat has been wonderful and she brings joy to my life every day. I am so thankful for her company. However last night, as every single night, as silly as it is, I get really sad that she may die soon. I adopted her old, unknowingly and every single day I fear the day I’m going to have to say goodbye. These thoughts make me extremely sad, and as silly as they are, they happen every single day. I finally analyzed this and wondered why I do not worry about losing my family nearly as much, and came to a conclusion that it is because of my past. I have been extremely blessed by not losing any of my family members so its a fear that I have never experienced (thankfully) so I don’t even know how that would feel, however I have lost many animals before and it has caused a lot of distress. That little girl who weeped for her animals that she truly loved is still alive in me and is scared of losing again.

Many of our actions today are probably based of our childhood. Analyze this and maybe you will find some thought today that relates to a fear or insecurity you had as a kid.

Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.

Anatole France

You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him.

— Johann Wolfgang von Goethe,