Sunday, June 07, 2009

Beatrix Jamima Puddleduck Goecker - 1990 - 2009

Beatrix Jamima Puddleduck Goecker entered our lives during the older 4 children's Beatrix Potter phase. ::grin:: In fact, we've had her just a few months shorter than we've had Jared (15 years).

Josiah rescued Bea from the pound. We were told she was NOT a good fit for our family. She had broken bones and had been abused. We wanted to try. She was nervous at first, but with all the attention and love she received she settled down and became a part of our family.

During those early years in Hardin, MT, she was almost like Nana in Peter Pan. She would frolic with the children in the backyard and raise a RUCKUS if any of them went near the gate. She hadn't done that in recent years.....but amused us all as she did the same to Zander and Stacia the last few days of camping.

Beatrix used to love to escape and was a common sight in Hardin to see her streaking through the neighborhood with 4 or 5 children chasing her. Again, with her eyesight failing and her hips giving her trouble, she's not made many breaks for it of late.

The CO air seems to have done her good. The past few days she has tried to nonchalantly saunter away from us....we simply walk around and head her off.

Bea's always had a few quirks....she would NOT let us take a photo of her. Even now that she's been blind she'd uncannily turn her head right as we clicked. This accounts for so many profile photos of Beatrix on the blog. She also wouldn't let us watch her eat.

Recent Attempts at photos....that sort of show her face

Over the years we've all taken turns being Bea's main caretaker. She's been with us through career changes, family additions, deaths in the family, Texas move, Alaska move, deployments....and we agonized over what to do when we received orders to Japan. She wouldn't receive a certificate of health. We doubted she'd survive the flight. We didn't want to put her in quarantine or have her put down.

Our dear camping, college buddies, the Bowers Family, contacted us and suggested they dog sit for three years for us. We all knew that Bea would most likely not survive three years...but they wanted to love her for us. They remembered her from camping trips etc. We made plans to drop Beatrix off in ID.

Yesterday, in the hubbub of setting up camp, Beatrix suffered a terrible accident. I won't share great details as they are painful and we are raw. All of us have "why didn't we?," "What could we have done?", "why" questions. Our dear friend died. The little ones did not see the accident nor her injuries. Mike and Jared did and could use your prayers. This is quite a blow as we are already emotionally fragile. Several have mentioned they simply want to be in Japan and be through with all the goodbyes. We were blessed that a lady who witnessed the accident is the mother of a Vet. She called and the Vet daughter discussed with Mike Beatrix's injuries. Beatrix was not going to make it. Mike stopped a policeman and asked him where the nearest vet was. As they talked, and Jared sat with Bea, she died.

We are all heartbroken to have lost her in this way. We are sad that she is gone. We love her like a part of our family. We wish she had simply died of old age and no accident had been involved. OTOH, we all suspected she would not take being left (abandoned from her perspective) at Bowers well....and that they would have to call us with news shortly after we left her. This is a clean goodbye...but a very painful one as well.

We are in Colorado Springs. Earl, Mike's brother, offered to bury her in the meadow behind his house. His mother's ashes and their old dog are also buried there. He dug the start of a grave with his bulldozer and moved several big rocks from Westcliffe out for us to use....then he left us alone. We buried our friend. This is Stacia's first experience with death. She kept trying to snap her fingers and make "Bea come alive". She is currently telling us that Beatrix is "God's Dog" and that God needs to send us another dog for our trip. Zander is telling us it's a "cruel world out there".

Mike and Jared lower Beatrix into her grave.


Earl explained that the Apache's put rocks in their graves. He had these rocks from Westcliffe and we all put one or two in the grave. Yes, we had a ceremony.


Earl will make a marker for the grave. It is really a gorgeous setting.


Even travelling, Beatrix is a huge part of our routines. It was strange this a.m. not to let her out first thing, have her sit on my feet while I read the word, have her under my feet as I attempted to roust the rest of the crew. We'll miss Beatrix.

Please do pray for us. I wasn't going to write this post....because it does seem the blog has been sad lately...but as Mike says this blog is a family history...and Beatrix is an important part of our family history. I needed to share her passing. I also covet your prayers as several in our family are feeling fairly fragile and wondering what could possibly be next.

We ARE taking comfort in knowing WHERE she is buried and in having been here with her at the end. As Josiah said, "I could write a country song about this week." ::sigh:: ::snort::

Choosing Joy!
©2009 D.R.G.

~ Coram Deo ~
Living all of life before the face of God...


Michelle said...

{{{{{{De'Etta and family}}}}}}
You most certainly have our prayers. I'm glad you can see the good in the midst of pain. It's wonderful that you're sharing that with your children.

:::typing through tears here:::
Beatrix added so much joy to your lives. Losing a dog (another family member) will take time for you all to grieve. After our chocolate lab died last year, it still helps our kids and me to talk about Hershey's little quirks, her personality, the wonderful times we had with her.

My kids love this poem:

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.

When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge.
There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together.
There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.
The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....

Author unknown...

Kris said...

Many, many thoughts, prayers, and hugs in spirit for you all. How I wish I could give you all real hugs and cry with you. I have developed a very emotional response to everything lately and the tears just seem to not stop. I pray you all will feel God's loving arms wrapped around you and his presence always.

Deja said...

Oh De'Etta...I'm so sorry. What deep emotions and pain for all of you. What a valley this journey to Japan is for you. Praying.

Linda said...

I sit here with tears as I read this account. Yes, Mike is right, it's a history, and you will be thankful that you wrote about it, though it's hard and sad and painful. I know how y'all loved Beatrix...she was a family member and there is never a replacement for that...only someone new to love some other time. My prayers are with all of the G family right now, and especially for those who witnessed the accident and passing of your beloved pet.

Lois said...

Dear G's,
I am so so sorry that this had to happen. It reminds me of reading the Little House books, and the one where good old Jack dies. I sat on the couch crying, unable to read, and my kids wondering what was wrong. Finally, my compassionate son says, "Oh mom, it's just a story." Well, Bea was a story too, part of your story. I'm glad she was with you at the end. Praying for you.

Heather said...

I'm so sorry to hear of the tragic death of your beloved Bea. Yes, there is an upside in that you were there at the end for her, but it is none the less hard to deal with I'm sure. Our prayers are with you and the family.

Wild Homeschool Family said...

I know I already said it over on FB,I'm praying for you. I feel so sad for you all over the loss of your beloved Beatrix. What an up and down journey Japan has been so far. I will pray that it's an easier journey from here on out.


Kim said...

Oh, DeEtta! I'll be praying for this too. Dear Lord, please send everyone peace and dim the memories that need to be dimmed.

Renee said...

Praying for your family as they deal with their loss.

Debbie said...

(((((De'Etta and family)))))
I am so very sorry. How heart breaking this must be, especially with it being an accident of some sort. Always so many "what ifs". I certainly will be praying for this added burden of your journey.

Anonymous said...


G'Pa/G'Ma are so sorry you have ALL lost Beat'. She was so blessed to have spent 15 years with you in peace, love, and no need. You were all so good to her. She was simply a doll and precious pet.

So sorry for the accident, so glad you were with her at the end and know the Lord is going to help you all over this.

PLEASE! Just remember the good times, the times so precious to you all. Forget about the accident! Focus on the POSITIVE of what Beat' meant to you all as well as to us.

Praying for you all, praying your visit with Bower's goes good. Praying your visit with Mike's parents is great.

Will be glad when your are all here and the girls get to move into their new place. Had three people ask me when they were going to be here to get moved in on the 24th. :):):) EBC folks of course were the ones asking.

love/prayers "just US"

Chris said...

Share the memories. You are doing that here. (As I hold Aslan and cry with you!). This move has been especially hard for you but the hard part is almost over. I'm sure many adventures await you. You gave Beatrix a happy life here and she gave you love.

Kristine said...

((((Goeckers)))), praying for you over this too.

Margie said...

So sorry to hear about Beatrix. Our family lifts your family up in prayer right now. Lord, give the G's comfort, peace and understanding. Continue to see their way safely to Japan. In Jesus name, Amen.

Herding Grasshoppers said...

Oh De'Etta and family,

So sorry about Beatrix. So very sorry.


Darshia said...

Praying. Praying.

kmjrose said...

I am so sorry you all lost your dear Beatrix. She was certainly blessed to have had you as her family, and you all blessed by her. It is always hard when a pet dies, but accidents are particularly rough because of all of the what if's. It was at least a blessing that you all could be there for her at the end.
With love and tears,
Karen in VT

Liz in OK said...

I'm so sorry, DeEtta -- sometimes it just does seem like one hard thing after the next, after the next. Our only comfort is that God always does seem so much bigger & closer in those times, because we're leaning so much more upon Him, feeling breakable.

Nate Townsend said...


Cynthia said...

So sorry. Our dog who had been with us for so many years suffered an accident as well. She was old and didn't move as fast as she used to and the driveway was icy. Two of us saw the accident. I remember how awful it was and how guilty we both felt. Praying for you all.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this experience with us even though it was painful to live through and write. It's a very vulnerable place to be in - the move, the older kids staying, the transition especially as the littles find it hard to understand, and now Beatrix. We are also very concrete in how we celebrate/acknowledge family rites of passage or transitions, so this seems very appropriate. All we can say is thanks for sharing your heart, even when it would've been easier not to. Misawa is in for a treat, and we bless and honor your family.

Yvonne said...

I'm so sorry, De'Etta. I was just catching up on blog reading. My heart hurts with you and I'm praying.