There a many books out there that have sad aspects about them. In fact, in my last Bookish Behavior post, I touched on the fact that books today are kind of downers, especially in the young adult section. For instance, let me use my go to example of Harry Potter. There are many times when I teared up or cried. In fact, I am re-listening to the Half-Blood Prince currently, and even though it is about the fourth time I have read them, I am at the part where I feel my eyes brimming with tears. Yet, when I reminisce about it, sadness is not my first thought. Many books I have read are like this. Except one.
I tear up at a lot of things. It’s quite sad really. Lately, I can be watching a really cheesy romantic-comedy where it’s obvious that the heroine will live happily ever after, and I will cry. Subtly of course… so no one sees me. Usually though, I can prevent it. Unless it comes to dying animals. Then, I lose all self control and ball like a baby. This was the case with Marley and Me by John Grogan. Sorry if I ruined the book for you, but I am pretty sure that since it was a bestseller that was made into a movie, that most people at least have an inkling of what happens.
John and Jenny bring home Marley as a puppy, thinking he will make their perfect new life together even more complete. Instead he terrorizes the house, destroys belongings, and gets kicked out of obedience school. Sigh, sounds like our little Gimli, except we haven’t tried the obedience school yet. But when they need someone who gives them unconditional love when they need it most, Marley is there. In the end, Marley grows old, yet in the eyes of his owners, he dies young.
It is at that point that tears are streaming down my face. This book is about the love and support an animal can bring to your life despite the frustration. It makes me think about the rough days I have at work (which seem to be more common lately), when I am down and worn out, but I walk in that door to two smiling faces who want nothing more than to shower me with love.
Unfortunately, for those of us who have experienced the loss of a pet, or those of us who are pure animal lovers, we know that the time we share with them is never enough. Gimli may make me angry when he chews on the wall (yes, it has happened) or the stairway banister. Koda may drive me insane when he trips me because he is scared of the recycling container. Yet, I love them, because they add meaning and joy to my life (except on the wall-chewing days). I try to give them the best life I can. But try as I might, I don’t think it can measure anywhere near the life they have given me.