Farm Wife Devotion: Pets In Heaven?
Photo credit goes to Mandie Tilderquist
When I was growing up, I was taught in school that animals do not go to heaven because they do not have a soul, like humans do. That is what sets us apart. I believed this for a long time. Whenever people mourned over the loss of a pet I thought it was silly and saying they were now in heaven was just plain delusional.
Then I moved to a farm with lots of animals. A place where life and death are a part of the everyday. It still never really bothered me when we lost a cow. Then I became a mother to four compassionate children with one that fell in love with cows. I didn’t understand my son’s bond with the bovine, but I respected it because I loved my little boy so. Over time, I have started to become a little attached too. Just a little though…? These cows are not just pets. They provide for us. The cows give what they have to sustain us. We are able to make a living because of them. We take good care of them and take great pride in being able to sell their antibiotic-free milk to feed the world.
When my son was 2 years old, I received a phone call saying he had won a heifer (girl) calf. I asked the man if it was a real one. Yep, my husband had signed him up in a drawing that covered 4 states. Well, my boy ended up winning and we went to get her in WI. She had the shape of a 7 on her forehead, so naturally her name was 7. She was the start of my oldest son’s very own herd…at the age of 2. Oh, how he loved that girl. She eventually became pregnant, had a baby and became a wonderful dairy cow. He actually showed her baby for his first fair. Seven was a very kind animal that always let the kids pet her, farmer too.
A few days ago, she became sick. The vet was coming out today and of course, her owner just had to be there, like a worried parent. There was nothing the vet could do for her bad heart and she collapsed and died right in front of my son. He went running home and cried in his room. Mom was bawling. It’s true what they say about how you feel when your child is hurting. I wished I could’ve taken that pain for him.
We decided to go say good bye to her and take one last picture. My child told me Seven was waiting for him up in heaven. I will never tell my children that it’s not true. Whatever makes us happy will be there. So, we always say that the cows and calves that are dear to us are up in heaven. Grandma T, who lived here on the farm for many years, is taking care of them just as she did when she was alive.
There are so many wonderful lessons to be learned on a farm. Some are harder than others and this is one of them. I truly believe that if we can have the hope of seeing our loved ones in heaven someday, our animals will be there too…waiting for us… just like an 8 year old said. ❤❤❤❤