Tuesday, September 16, 2008


My small and beautiful hedgehog passed away this morning. I am full of grief and loss to an overwhelming degree considering Tov's size and the time he was in our lives. The accident happened a few weeks ago and it seemed certain he would pull through. He had a whole mess of fight in him, but it seems as though the extent of his burns exhausted him and he just couldn't fight any longer. I will miss the way he picked up on any smell that had happened in our house that day from Basil to coffee he was interested in tasting all smells. I miss the rare nights when he would fall asleep on the crook of my or Kel's arm, with eyes drooping shut like a child. At this point in my post you may be thinking, they loved that little rodent too much, you may think we are acting like yuppies being too frivolous with our pets. Well for one Tov was no rodent but an insectivore and for two the Pennys don't just love, we love the lives we come in contact with, deep and hard. It hurts us badly sometimes but we love you with this same love and this is something to be celebrated. We fought for Tov with our time, money and hearts. Part of me feels the relief of not having his feeding and care consume my day, and then the other part of me is guilty and nauseated because thos feelings exist.

I hate being in our office right now and seeing Tov's habitat sitting empty, we're washing his cage liners and packing it all up for maybe another hedgie someday. But today I just want to cry over Tov, the unfairness of it all, the fight it seemed like we were winning and the agony of this surprise defeat. I cry when I think about driving the Saturn and mine being the only life inside. I imagined having him in his cage in the back seat, I would harass him by making him sit on my lap, he wouldn't appreciate the sun but he would snuggle in the folds of my shirt and fall asleep.

I want to be angry, I want to weep loudly, I miss my little kiwi and all the memories we made with him seem so vibrant and razor sharp today. I am sick of grieving the loss of things in my life, I want a grieving season to be over, for a while.

But life in all of its celebrations is only as rich as it is because the highs are only sweet because we have tasted the bitters of the valleys. I feel like almost every single thing in my life is dying, my friendships back home, my sense of home, my pets, my job, my address, they are all fading. Today I don't feel the birth of something new and I long to feel it, today I only feel death. The death of a house full of boxes and an empty cage where there should be a sleeping ball of quills which has a place in my heart.

1 comment:

Chris Symes said...

I'm sorry, Leanne. Tov was one cool hedgehog.

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