Join date: Sep 15, 2021

Hello, Everyone! My name's Jennifer & I live in a very sweet neighborhood in Nashville, TN, USA, with my Chihuahua, Elfie (dressed as Ernie of Bert & Ernie in my profile picture with me!), my German Spitz, Geldof, and my two lovely little girls cats, Dewi & Franny!

My story of how the Boomtown Rats came to mean so much to me begins with a very tragic walk that my orange & white Chihuahua, Wilbur Willoughby, and I went on as sunset approached on March 14th, 2019. On that walk, while my little Wilbur was contentedly, happily, and innocently, smelling grass on the grassy part of the sidewalk, a white bull terrier suddenly emerged onto the lawn of the house we were walking past. Or planned on walking past. We never got that far because the dog came rapidly charging across the lawn, immediately taking Wilbur's head into her mouth. I never saw Wilbur, who meant everything to me (the funniest, most loving, genius, and unique being you could ever hope to know), alive again. It took only moments for Wilbur to die on the streets of the neighborhood he loved so much and that, I'm so happy to be able to say, he was loved IN so much. Every morning, with the sun shining down (there were no cloudy days with Wilbur ~ every day was funny, hilarious, and filled with warmth & love!), we came down our 3 little steps. I'd put my hands on my knees, look in his eyes, and say, "Are you ready to run?! Let's Run!" And we'd take off flying across the lawn (on his leash, of course) and onto the sidewalk. We took off and he'd be running even faster than his tiny little legs could carry him. I can run REALLY fast but I could barely keep up with him! He was full of Love and Joy for life! But suddenly, just like that, Wilbur's strong, perfectly healthy legs, would never run again. Life changed in an instant. There was no time to prepare for losing him because he wasn't sick. We'd only gotten to be together for 2 years, 2 months, and 2 weeks. He was just sixteen days away from his 10th birthday (I adopted Wilbur from Maggie Valley, NC, in the Great Smoky Mountains, on January 28th, 2017). Our life was really still beginning together but, just like that, suddenly it was over. And violently, too. I was immediately thrust into complete darkness for the next 5~months. I did everything to get the dog, named Aria, to let him go. But she just wouldn't let go.

Music is my life, alongside my animals, but for the next five months music was something I played in the background of my misery. Silence would have been torture, too, and definitely wouldn't have been fair to my cats, who were used to our normally cheerful home and were very badly missing their funny companion. So, I very softly kept "My Little California Radio Station", as I call it, on in the background (KOZT, The Coast FM). That helped my cats. But NOTHING and I mean NOTHING could help me. For the next 5~months I would torture myself with all of the things I could have done differently: "We should have just crossed the street like I had planned on us doing when we first got to it." / "I should have just carried him down to Central Avenue, the street we really wanted to walk on anyways." / "We should have left 5~minutes earlier ~ why in the world did I have to stop & put earrings on for our walk?!" / "We should have left 5~minutes later & Aria's mother would have already made it back inside the house with her." (They had been emerging from the backyard together & heading towards their house when Aria pulled her mother over onto the grassy part of the sidewalk where Wilbur & I were.)

So, in my now musicless world, I don't know what had me scrolling through You Tube at 2:30 in the morning on a mid~August night. The only thing I can think is that Wilbur guided me to do it. I don't remember if I searched anything in particular because there definitely wasn't any particular song or any particular artist I felt like listening to because I wasn't happy enough (I wasn't happy at all!) to feel like listening to ANYONE. I just remember that I was scrolling on my phone when a picture of Bob Geldof caught my eye. He was wiping a tear from his eye and over this still of him from an interview were the words, "It still hurts." I knew, very sadly, of course, what this referred to. I thought to myself, "How HAS Bob Geldof made it through?" I was crushed for him the morning I heard on the radio about Peaches. I was very sad for myself, too, because I very clearly remembered seeing the three pretty & sweet Geldof daughters growing up on the pages of the glossy British music magazines I loved to read when I was in high school (and beyond). "Not Peaches! How can this be?!" I remember having my breath taken away by the horrible news.

So, I settled in to watch this interview (there only seems to be 15~minute segments of this interview now on You Tube). I noticed about 5~minutes into the interview that I was breathing normally. From the moment I lost Wilbur so brutally, I had lived in a constant hyperventilation state. I think I was breathing normally because everything I was hearing made so much sense to me. I wasn't hearing a Disneyland version of how to make it through after losing someone you love deeply. There's no such thing. It's daily agony. And Bob completely acknowledged that. And then, through tears, he said, "Time doesn't heal, it accommodates." Those words lingered in the air for me. Time doesn't heal, it accommodates. Finally. The Truth. Not someone speaking about the brighter days to come tomorrow. It's not that brighter days WON'T come tomorrow but that's not what you need to hear when you're in the midst of deep pain because you just can't see them ahead of you and you don't know how they'll arrive. "Time doesn't heal, it accommodates." I shut my phone off and fell asleep for an hour with those words on my mind. That was a really big deal because I hadn't slept at all since I lost Wilbur. Not a wink. The next morning, I felt a little bit better. Not because of the hour's sleep (!) but because I had awakened with those words from the night before on my mind: "Time doesn't heal, it accommodates." So, faced with a world that doesn't always value animal life as highly as everyone who's ever loved a dog like I still love Wilbur, knows it should be valued, it didn't really matter if I should encounter someone who wondered why I wasn't "Zip~i~dee~do~da, Zip~i~dee~yay!" If I was ever going to be "Zip~i~dee~do~da, Zip~i~dee~yay!" again, it would come in time.

On October 8th, 2019, I adopted Elfie from Foothills Humane Society in Columbus, NC. Elfie lived his first 6~years of life in Flat Rock, NC, at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Four days later, I adopted my little coconut~cream & toffee~colored Chihuahua, Sketcher (I actually called him Beakey, though, because every time I came home, he made tiny little beeping sounds on the other side of the door & he sounded like Beaker on the Muppets!), from SparKy Animal Rescue of Owensboro, KY. Very, very painfully, I just lost Beakey at home on September 5th to pulmonary hypertension at 2:30 in the morning. Mine, Elfie, Dewi, & Franny's hearts are completely broken. Beakey was HILARIOUS and filled with deep, deep Love. We miss him painfully. Beakey was Bert to Elfie's Ernie. 🧡💛

The German Spitz named Geldof that I mention at the beginning of this? I don't actually have him yet as of this writing (October 6th, 2021) but I did meet him this past Saturday in Bowling Green, KY! He caught my attention on SparKy's website because he LOOKED to be a longhair Chihuahua who could be related to Beakey...Well...He's not related to Beakey and he's not even a Chihuahua. But being someone who trusts in the magic of life, I'm going to adopt him anyways because he's BEAUTIFUL and Beakey led me to him. And I'm naming him Geldof because I trust in the magic of life and on that miserable August night when there seemed to be absolutely no magic around, a little bit of it found its way to me and turned everything around.

Sending Lots of Love & Joy To Everyone,

Jennifer, Elfie, Dewi, Franny,...and Geldof! ❤️💚🧡❤️💚

Jennifer London
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