Whilst it could never be described as a panic attack, it was more of a heightened sense of anxiety that would swell, threaten to engulf me and then subside as quickly as it sprang forth.
For several months now something has been eating away at me, causing me to move uncomfortably in my thoughts and distracting me throughout my days. It has been tugging at my conscience, waking me at night (when I do manage to catch a few hours’ sleep) and building to make me more anxious each day; because there was just something I knew I had to do.
For some time I have been able to keep this nagging feeling at bay, knowing all was well but with the imminent sale of my old farm, Edgar’s Mission Mark 1, crunch time was nigh. Because I knew full well that once I closed that front gate for the last time, there would be no way of going back. No way of ever again stealing a silent moment under a starlit sky, taking in the wonder of the universe and seeing the crystal clarity of just what I need to do in the company of my Edgar.
Of course I know he will always be with me in spirit but the heartache of knowing that his bones would remain there in the ground, to be walked over each day by hearts that never knew of, or even cared about his glory, was too much for me ever to rest in comfort. And the horror I would feel if I were to one day learn that the ground in which my buddy had been laid to rest had been dug up, and his bones tossed aside as garbage. And so I knew just what I had to do, my only challenge was how.
My task was not so much as taking the monkey off my back, but rather getting the pig out of the ground. A none too pleasant a task indeed and most certainly one I could not do alone. But I was fortunate enough to learn that there was another who too had kept counsel with a wise pig they had loved so dearly, and she too was quietly pondering just what I would do. Echoing my angst of leaving my Edgar behind, this kind heart enlisted the support and skills of her dear husband and together we set a date to bring Eddy home.
As the digging arm unearthed the lime under which Edgar had been gently placed, we knew we had hit the right spot. Then with the dexterous care reserved for an archaeological dig, the first bone was unearthed.
My smile hit the moon as into my outstretched hand the first ‘artefact’ was placed along with the words, “He’s watching you, you know.” Of course I knew this, Edgar would always be watching over me. “Do you know what bone this is?” the kindly voice asked. I guess my puzzled looked showed I hadn’t fully comprehended the gravity of the find. “It’s his eye socket.”
Do you believe in signs? I have never been sure, but the pendulum certainly tipped in favour of ‘yes’ on this occasion. I don’t think I will ever be able to convey just how I felt at that point in time, but the words relief, triumph, unity, calm and love would have to be in there.
I will forever hold tight many memories in my life and that moment will be right up there with the best of them.
Not long thereafter Edgar’s body was fully exhumed and placed in the wooden box that had been lovingly crafted for him. While he will fly forever more in my heart, he now rests in peace under a big gum tree at the entrance to our new farm here in Lancefield, doing what he always did best, sleeping peacefully.
Every day as I pass this spot I cannot help but smile, knowing my life is once again complete. Whilst I knew this was something I had to do I had no idea of just how much it would mean to me.
I know there will be those who struggle to come to terms with why I did just what I did, for they are after all ‘just a bunch of bones’ but they are his bones. His magnificent bones, the mechanics of my friend, my confidant and my pig, and I think in this life there are some things we do that need no justification, simply because they are the right thing to do.
My actions stand as a final act of respect and love. In seeing the flowers that have already been laid on his grave I am reminded that Edgar will always be larger than life, he will always mean so much to so many and love will always inspire us to be the best we can be.
And so to those who still scratch their head and look at me in wonderment as to why I bothered, I know that to put the building blocks in place to explain all this would take an eternity and if indeed I needed explain I know the asker would never understand. So instead I will smile and say only this, “It’s just something I had to do…”