This morning, I had to go to Gateway Animal Clinic and pick up Fox's ashes from them. It was raining and I hadn't been home from the night before yet, but Gateway is a walk-in clinic so if you don't get there early, sometimes you can end up waiting a while. I got there 15 minutes before they opened, and still had to wait a bit. Being in that waiting room is hard and wonderful at the same time - there are just so many dogs. A huge mastiff, a fat little bug eyed rat dog, the cutest dingo looking puppy you've ever seen. And then me, sitting there in the clothes from yesterday, hair a mess, sans animal. I was only waiting like 15 minutes, but it felt like forever. When I was finally called up, and had to say the words "I'm here to pick up Foxie's ashes", for a minute I thought I might lose it. And man I wish my mom hadn't started his file under Foxie instead of Fox. It's much easier to use the formal name than the one you used to call him in from the yard. I wasn't expecting tears, I tend to usually be pretty calm and hard about death. I didn't cry at Peter's funeral after all, and he was a human I loved. When she handed me the little plastic bag with the canister though, I pulled myself together and wiped the little leaks away from my eyes, signed for it, and then immediately hugged the bag close to my chest as I walked out. That surprised me, I hadn't been expecting to feel any sort of connection to a tin box covered in puppy paw print. But I held it super close, hugged it all the way to the car. I left it/him in the car when I got home, because I was afraid I would dwell on it/him if I took it/him inside with me. But now, honestly, I feel guilty with the box being left there in the garage, like I'm just leaving him alone out there, no windows cracked and it's such a nice day. We're such sentimental creatures. I was supposed to hold onto the box until Easter, when we're all going out to the farm and can bury him there. But I don't know, I think I'm going to have to leave it/him at Dad's house, I think my own imagination is too much for me. It's so light, it weighs practically nothing. That's the strangest part.
I had to stop by the grocery store and get cat food before actually going home, because I left the cats with nothing the day before, and had felt super guilty the whole time. I certainly wasn't going to face them without something to give them. There were rainbows all over Cleveland this morning, the sunrise and the rain mixing like baking soda and vinegar. It occurs to me that every photo I have of a rainbow is from a grocery store parking lot, since those are the places around me where you can get the best view of the sky quickly. How sad is that? I have so many pictures of sunsets and sunrises and storm clouds, all framed by strip malls.