Rest In Peace “Sticker” the Plecostimus – childhood pet death

5 01 2013


Our eight year old daughter has gone from complete joy to utter disappointment and grief in a span of a week. She acquired her first aquarium from “Santa” at Christmas. A few days later we ventured to PETCO to guide her in choosing some fish for her tank. We talked with a “fish specialist” who was very helpful – and we talked with one at another store when purchasing the aquarium kit. She first chose a Marble Molly and a Common Plecostimus (little tiny catfish that can grow up to 2 feet long!). We have done everything they told us and Ellie has been responsibly caring for her pets every single day. We also have a cat, a box turtle, and have pet sat for neighbors, but this is her first pet she isn’t sharing with family.

Unfortunately, I think we unintentionally starved the plecostimus she affectionately named “sticker” because it just stuck to the ground and side of the tank eating up algae. There likely wasn’t enough algae and I looked up more information to find a few more things Sticker required that we hadn’t been told. This is how we learn.

This is first death of a pet in our household (she is aware of family and friends who have died, so not a first death experience for her). I asked what Ellie would like to do with the fish and she said “bury him”. My husband suggested a “burial at sea” via toilet might be appropriate for a fish and she just glared at him. So with trowel in one hand, and deceased fish in a ziplock container in the other hand, she dug a little hole in our backyard. As Ellie put Sticker’s body in the hole, I asked everyone to share their favorite memories of our short time with this little fish, then we said a prayer thanking God for allowing him to be in our family for a little bit. I mentioned that stickers will help fertilize the yard and bring new life in the spring. My husband tried not to laugh at me, then we walked back up our house with our arms around Ellie. She did very well, and tomorrow we’ll look for another Plecostimus and try again at our new life as fish owners.

Rest In Peace Stickers. Know you were loved by a sweet little girl named Ellie.




15 07 2012

Do you believe miracles happen? I have faith in God and I believe Jesus healed many while on earth and I believe those who have experienced miraculous healing in their lives.

Lately, as I have a friend who is living with and fighting breast cancer for what she is told a few more months of life – I struggle to wonder how much prayer of people and the miracles of Jesus are connected. It isn’t just my friend’s experience – but experiencing the trials and deaths of other who’ve fought terminal diseases or simply old age and watching people pray and pray over them to what may seem no avail – that causes to wonder.

I have been reading a book while camping where a pastor’s young son hurts very sick and thy believe he does and went to heaven. I’m only about a third of the way through the book so I am not far beyond the true story of boy’s miraculous recovery. The words that struck me this evening had to do with the pastor realizing it wasn’t just the ill/sinful people believing Jesus could heal, but their friends and family pleading and praying I their behalf that brought Jesus to heal the person.

So now my thoughts are pondering does the afflicted person need to believe they can possibly be miraculously saved and have a cadre if believers intercessing on their behalf for a miracle to happen? This doesn’t jive with my belief of grace comes by faith and not works. But it jives with the fact that we need to believe to be saved.

But what about those afflicted asking for a miracle and who have the masses appealing I their behalf for a miracle!? Does it mean they didn’t believe enough or have the right folks praying? Or it is just a fact I life that some recover to keep loving and others sims die unfairly premature and at what we consider to be before their time?

I really want to know the answer, not sure that I ever will. In the mean time I’ll pray that God’s will be done on earth as of heaven and that my friend be given peace and relief and experience the utmost outpouring of love from family and friends whether she is granted a longer life or she leaves us soon. God be with her regardless. Amen.

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