In this WHITEBALLOON GUEST BOOK REVIEW, author Holly Lyon-Hawk explains why she wrote her lovely book, ‘A Gentle Goodbye with Cinnamon the Rabbit’, for both children and adults alike.
It takes courage to love and continue to care for our friends even after death.
We all know that day will come when we have to say goodbye to someone we love with all our hearts, our beloved animal friends included. Most of us put it to the back of our minds, thinking ‘I’ll think about that nearer the time’. Sadly though, by doing this we miss a precious opportunity to educate ourselves as to all the options that are open to us when the time does come, leaving us with an immensely distressing experience and a grief that has nowhere to go.
Of course we don’t want to consider the uncomfortable, the upsetting. But by putting our heads in the sand won’t make that not happen, death cannot be stopped. When it comes it can be completely unexpected leaving us reeling and in total shock.
I wrote ‘A Gentle Goodbye with Cinnamon the Rabbit‘ to hopefully engage both a young and older audience to be better equipped with ways to love and honour a beloved animal friend after death, showing this time can be a magical and beautiful time, albeit sad, with these techniques being used for our humans too.
In the book you will be shown simple ways to care for an animal after they have died, giving you time to honour them, really giving thanks for their life and all the joy and unconditional love they gave you, not just running from the reality because it feels uncomfortable, rather instead bravely sitting with it and thanking it as this is the love we have for our friend.
I have seen over and over again through many years of working with both people and animals at the end of life how precious this time is with the body after the death. The power of gently washing and anointing them, singing to them, saying blessings and wrapping in a beautiful piece of material or maybe their favourite blanket, can really help people to process the death, supporting them on their grieving journey, giving them the best start.
A Gentle Goodbye with Cinnamon the Rabbit is a memorial book having space at the back to write your preparations, to share your favourite memories and stick locks of hair, photos and place a paw print in, making it the perfect gift for any animal owner.
Foreword from Felicity Warner, Founder of Soul Midwives and author of four
“Like many of us, the wonderful animals in my life are members of my soul family. Including Monty, a feisty ginger Tom, a gaggle of guinea pigs, a mischievous white mouse who loved liquorish and my beloved dachshund Hector who died in my arms with his fat little paws around my neck dancing cheek to cheek in the kitchen. All of them taught me so much about life and death and love and friendship, including the pain of loss.
This enchanting book – A Gentle Goodbye with Cinnamon the Rabbit – describes the joy of sharing a kind and compassionate life with our furry companions but also how we can care, honour and respect them deeply when they depart. I won’t spoil the story, but the ideas for Cinnamon’s farewell box are beautiful and so inspiring.
Readers both young and old will love this story and the beautiful illustrations that accompany it, weaving together a magical tale of wisdom, love and the knowledge that those we lose are only ever a thought away and that death is the beginning of yet another precious story.“