First before my story my brief PSA. Vaccinate yourself and your children. You're not only protecting yourself/child but all of the people who can't be vaccinated and are immunosuppressed. They don't cause autism.
The most memorable, but saddening, holiday memory I have is the death of my favorite pet animal.
My pet's was name was Othello. He had started out as just a farm animal, but after awhile his affectionate smile and wiggly tail got our attention and we just could not let him go. He became out pet. For awhile we kept him outside, but the more we were around him; we just couldn't part with such a cute creature, so we brought him in the house.
Othello became a big part of our family. We planned trips based on whether he was allowed in the hotel (which not very many hotels allow). He ate under the table while we were eating. And we all laughed whenever he made a yap in the middle of our conversation. We all argued every night over who got to sleep with Othello, and contrary to most families, we also argued over who would take him outside to go to the bathroom at night. We even sent him away to a pet spa to relax for a weekend.
Then came the unfortunate day. It was Christmas day. We had just finished opening presents, and we were out in the yard playing with Othello's new ball. We would toss the ball and Othello would dig through the snow and bring it back to us, running at us with a silly grin on his face and his tail wagging. He was even smart enough not to fall for the old snowball trick. We were taking turns throwing the ball to Othello and it was my sister's turn. She threw the ball, but she accidentally slipped and the ball flew into the street. Othello ran out. It was snowy. Plows can't stop very easily. We thought that there was no way that Othello would survive. He had hit the blade and flew high into the air. He tumbled through the air and landed in the snow behind the plow.
We stood there in horror, but luckily the snow was soft. Othello's nose was soon visible above the snow bank. He was alive! We were ecstatic. We thought we had lost our best friend. Othello dug himself out from the bank and stood on top of it triumphantly. We all called him over to us, rejoicing at his good luck. He started running. He was half way across the road when a teenage driver hit him.
And that night Othello served his original purpose. We had pork chops for dinner.
Madison, WI, USA