Saturday, October 24, 2009

THE DAY THE MUSIC STOPPED

I grew up in the country on a farm which was located beside a rail road crossing. Riding my bike over that crossing was routine. My Grandmother's stern warning was always to be careful, watch both ways and listen for the train. A ten year old's brain is a little different than a sixty year old's. I knew Grandma meant well, but how could I not hear or see a train? Of course I was careful. We heard the train, and saw it in the distance, we had plenty of time to cross the tracks. My grandmother, mother and sister and I joined hands and ran across, laughing and enjoying our time together that day in the heat of the summer sun. We stood on the other side, closest to our farm, and waited, watching as the train went past. I saw an object fly through the air, on the other side of the train. It was at that moment I realized my precious, ever faithful dog was sitting too close to that train. That was the day the "music stopped in my heart". I had never lost anyone close to me, and maybe that was God's innocent way of preparing me for what was to come in later years. But I wasn't sure how I could go on without my dog. I had not known life without him. My parents acquired him as a puppy shortly after I was born. I suppose I also took him for granted. He was always at my side. Followed me everywhere I went. I rode my bike to Grandma's house everyday. He was always there trotting along beside me. When one of the neighbor boys shoved me down and tried to beat me up, my dog bit him. I'll never forget the emptiness I felt that day, at that moment when I realized that "object" flying through the air was my dog. I'll never forget seeing my Grandmother pick him up, carry him to our farm while my mother found a blanket to wrap him in. We cried as a family, everyone loved him. My grandmother put her arms around me, trying to comfort me. She reminded me to give thanks to the Lord for everything. I looked at her, tears running down my cheeks. "How, can I thank Him for taking my dog away?" I sobbed. She patted my hand and said, "You must be thankful that you had him for ten wonderful years. He loved you more than anything." I learned a valuable lesson that day. I learned when I prayed I found the comfort I was seeking. When I thanked the Lord for my faithful companion, it gave me a new sense of peace. Today when I need peace, I look to Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

8 comments:

Carol J. Garvin said...

Such a heart-rending account! Tragedy experienced as a child can be especially traumatic. I imagine it still gives you pain to recall that day. But how blessed you were to have a grandmother of such faith and wisdom to help you learn of God's comfort.

Kathryn Neff Perry said...

Carol, I was surprised as I wrote that story at the pain I still feel for that crazy little dog. Yes, I was blessed to have a grandmother such as she. I am named after her---and I still use her name i.e. Kathryn NEFF Perry-----she passed away when I was twenty one----I have written a few times about her----she was one fabulous German woman!!!!
Hugs
Katt

Anonymous said...

Wow Aunt Kathy you have such a wonderful way with your words very breathtaking! Its no wonder you have published books :-) I love you and keep on writing! Because i always love reading about times when you and mom were growing up!
Love you Samantha Kanniard

Kathryn Neff Perry said...

Thanks Sam----I love you too! You mean you read what I write???? ha ha

Jodie said...

What a sad but very important story. Thanks for sharing it. And I was glad to see another glimpse of your grandmother.

Kathryn Neff Perry said...

Thanks Jodie, see, they (our Grandmothers) live on in our hearts. I have shared Grandma stories forever----I want other people to get to know her too. So as long as I'm alive, she will be too------
Hugs
Katt

Anonymous said...

What can an author say when he's heard the authentic radio broadcast of the announcement of the plane crash after the Surf Ballroom of Clear Lake, Ia, and its passendgers that included Buddy Holly and The Big Bopper. Having danced on the same floor, and has Jeremiah 29:11 posted on his refrigerator and used Jeremiah in his novel. What does it say? The music still plays at the Surf Ballroom, the legacy band of Glenn Miller plays, and the music of Buddy Holly still provides a 1 - 2, rock step. Where there's music and faith, the music never stops.

Kathryn Neff Perry said...

Amen