When creating the first page of The Rainbow Zoo – Wild Afterlife book, I believed it was important to create a silver lining – particularly for children when losing a family pet. Have you ever heard the metaphor “every cloud has a silver lining?” … every difficulty or setback, has the potential for a beneficial outcome. In other words, for every negative there is a positive.
In helping to search for the positive aspect during sometimes difficult / painful circumstances in life – we can begin to find that ‘inner peace’ or ‘resolve’ in response to the negative situation. Psychologically, it helps to regain our ability to solve it if we can or accept it if we can’t.
Losing a family pet can create many emotions including sadness, grief and loneliness. If you notice that on this very first page, the reader is faced with the death of Blade the housecat – who had been a part of mum and dads lives for 18 years. This is a significant period of time and the children have clearly grown up with Blade. Many families would be able to connect with these feelings and the inevitable outcome of death may not be a simple discussion.
However, there is always a silver lining and I think it’s a wonderful life skill for children to learn and understand the importance of resilience and acceptance. Losing a family pet can be a very difficult time for children; so they may need time to learn this concept. This illustration offers parents and teachers the opportunity to explore the silver lining – depicted in the now, unrestricted lives of these two mice; who are clearly taking advantage of the free reign that they have inherited!
This illustration is the perfect example of where the cycle of life doesn’t stop – not for anything or for anyone.
It is also a light-hearted illustration that can be used as an example to children, when identifying the silver lining – especially in the face of losing a beloved family pet.
Wife, mother, police officer, author…. Debz is a well known children’s author on the Gold Coast writing quirky, fun and meaningful stories about pets and animals. Debz’ is a recognised member of the community and was presented the Gold Coast ‘Police Officer of the Year’ Award in 2016.