Releasing – The Art of Grieving and Rejoicing (A Tribute to Ella)

ella close up

The selfish wants to hold on. To grasp and grab and even hold back. Make you stay and sit here with me. Make you sacrifice so I can keep you here.

I wept and I weep at the thought of you leaving. There is nothing easy in releasing fury joy on four long spindly legs, big eyes that stared me down, laying it on thick when you wanted a hand to rub or a time to walk.

But you were made to soar. To run fast and often like a blue streak. You were the fastest many had ever seen. A blur when you were set free to fly. You smiled broad and wide when you lived your calling.

You shined bright.

You were created for those things.

But in my difficult release you will find freedom, to go and do and be the highest and best that this life has for you.


And so she was released a little bit ago,  to a family on a farm. To run and hunt. To run more often, longer, brisker, faster. To live and breath deep.

To play hard and to do that which she loves. She was born to hunt, to run headlong into the woods. It is her passion.

She has been released in weepy, crying love to go. And I mourn her company and  grieve my lost companion.

But I rejoice in her joy at  living out her passions. Though it is  away from me.

smiling me

She smiled her broadest dog smile when she did. So when I put aside my selfish longing for her, I truly rejoice in her new place of truly living. Though it is apart from me.

And  I trust that she is living her passion daily,living her dreams, living her calling. Extravagant living, into all that life has for her.

I want that for Ella. I want that for those I love. For my children, my husband, and my dearest friends.

Ella, you showed me a beautiful picture of what it looks like  to grab hold of what you loved. Yes, even a dog can show us how to live with unbridled passion for what we were made to hunger after and for.

She was joy. And she was loved.


I miss you Ella, my Ellison, you are running headlong into the wind. And when I dwell on that, I smile with you.

When you were in my world, you blessed my socks off. And I am truly grateful.

ella sleeping

You were a friend and you were and are  pure delight, all white and furry, with endless energy and zest for living. You and your playful spirit brought me joy.

Go for it Ella. Go for it girl.

me and ella

ella and me header

Joining Laura for Playdates At The Wellspring and Ann at A Holy Experience dot com, quietly counting a boatload of gifts, especially Ella, Miss Ellison, Ella-Bella Marshall, our Ella Girl.


21 thoughts on “Releasing – The Art of Grieving and Rejoicing (A Tribute to Ella)

  1. Hmm…your story is touching a tender place in me. Since my daughter left for college, I’ve been left at home to care for her dog. 😉 I do love the dog, but have considered if it would be best for her to be with another family who could/would give her more attention. I don’t think it’s a decision any of us are ready to face just yet, but I should at least keep it in the back of my mind… Thanks for sharing this.

  2. I’m so sorry that you have to part with Ella, but grateful for the companionship and joy she brought you up till now. And yes, joy continues as you think of her running in the wind at her new home, but still it must sting. I’m praying for you, Elizabeth, that God would fill that aching space she left with comfort as well as joy.

    1. Thank you for your words, they comfort my fragile soul. I am grateful for support through the letting go of a sweet sweet fury one. She was a gift. And I hope she’s happy and thriving away from us. We loved her so.

    1. That you would pray….warms me up. I really do appreciate that…the grief sneaks up sometimes because we loved her so…but what comfort and joy in her being out on a big piece of land with a family in the country. You bless me Brenna..thanks for being here.

    1. Katie, thank you for stopping, pausing and commenting. You bless with your presence and your gentle words. It is a pleasure to meet you. Please come back anytime and journey over here. wishing you His grace, elizabeth

  3. Oh, Elizabeth, my heart is heavy for you and your family and the decision you had to make. It seems a picture of genuine love to me — caring so much for this precious girl, wanting what’s best for her more than you want what’s best for you — so she can soar. Praying for you. Parting with a beloved friend is so painful. Sending love.

  4. At first I thought she died… and I was deeply sad for you. Then I realized she was given away? that is sad too, a parting of heart and soul and family… I know my own ‘Emma Rose’ I could never part with, she is a red heeler and my sweet friend. Knowing there must be a reason you let her go, but very sad you had to make that choice. Praying for you.

  5. Oh friend, to part with such a dear thing is indeed difficult. I am sure that the decision to release her was one filled with angst and trepidation. But then I see that picture of her rolling on the ground in the grass and I laugh out loud and I know that only a ludicrous love would set her free. Praying that your empty places will be filled a hundredfold, friend.

  6. at first I thought she had died and that tore my heart in two. But i know that the loss is even harder when you have to release her into a new place…knowing that she’s still living and loving but apart from you. I do see the joy as she stands by you in your pictures…and as she frolicks in new pastures…but i also know the heartbreak of being removed from a companion that is so often there for all your heart moments. no one quite has those quiet moments with you like a dear dog friend, do they. I am glad that you were able to see her off, running in the wind, chasing her calling. thank you for that reminder friend.

  7. oh, Elizabeth. I’m sorry for the pain of this goodbye. I hope you will get to visit Ella. She is beautiful and I’m sure she will be so happy to run free. It is a brave thing you do. Hugs to you, friend.

    1. Your words bring comfort. We hope to see her soon. She is not too far away. I think she is loving life, at least I hope so. She’s with a family in the country. My daughter and I are going to ask for pictures too. Thanks for having a heart for this release.

  8. This reminds me of having to give away my St. Bernard when I was in college because my parents decided to move to Florida. All those old feelings rise up and bring tears. Our pets are not just animals but family members. I have a Westie now; I’ve had him since he was four months old (since 2003).

    Bless you, Elizabeth, for the love you have for Ella.

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