For days the gills bounced up and down assuring us of life. In researching how to address the problem of a back swimmer we decided to separate out Professor in hopes of curing whatever disease he had picked up.
A sick pet, an ill owner.
A year lapsed from purchase to grave. I was saddened but not as much as Frank was, perhaps I’ve been a bit selfish in wanting my health over caring for a 49 cent fish. I feel so cruel typing that. I love our fish. Yet they were bought as a numbing agent when I was told my womb would not likely harbor a life. Now it does. I notice I don’t watch the fish the way I used to. I’m sad to say that maybe my apathy led to his fall, my selfish desire for myself to be better contributed to his slow decay. I lay on the couch trying to care for my body and cure my illness, to no avail as of yet. Frank frantically filled buckets, switched out water, ran to the pet store for water testing kits, and read several articles for cures. As I’ve said before, Frank is compassionate. I haven’t known him to ever be selfish. He tried so hard to help Professor fight.
Still what we wanted to avoid occurred. Professor passed last night. As soon as we put him in a separate bucket the gills stopped flapping. Watching him suffer for three weeks was unbearable though. We weren’t trying to euthanize him. Articles said to feed them skinned peas and put them in a separate container. As soon as we did Professor became still. I feel guilty saying it but I wanted him to pass already. He appeared to be in so much pain. I also wanted hubby more focused on me and less so on the tank. It’s horrible to say that. Maybe my lack of emotion stems from the fact that I never became attached to Professor. I felt that he taunted Skipper when we first purchased him. I guess I haven’t gotten over that observation. Yet, it all feels so selfish to not be the least bit distressed over this, to not be shedding tear alongside my more compassionate hubby, and to want my health more than that of my fish.
So I pray that I won’t have such a callous heart. I need to practice faith in the hacking, praise in the misery. I can hope that I’ll see my fish again because there will be a fish pond in heaven, even though Professor didn’t profess to know Christ. Maybe he did but I’ll never know because we can’t know the thoughts of another species with whom we can’t communicate. This could all be absurd, but a portion of heaven for pets gives me comfort.
I hope because without the anticipated expectation of such an event I’m engulfed in sorrow for the fate of creation aside from humanity. We hope in things yet unseen. We hope in what might seem scientifically absurd. We hope in Christ’s redeeming work, his salvation for those who believe. I’d like to think that hope in Christ restoring creation includes my fish’s life even if I haven’t cried over Professor’s death, and regrettably might be a bit relieved.
Is there anything in Scripture that would contradict or support this hope? If you have any biblical insight in the matter please let me know.