Dog Mom Receives $10 Message from Rainbow Bridge

If you’ve loved and lost a dog and are feeling the pangs of hurt a bit extra hard this time of year, I walk this road with you. Every now and again, though, I believe the dogs we have loved and lost send us a message from the Rainbow Bridge.

Some may call it coincidence, others may deem it “wishful thinking,” but in my heart and to the deepest core of who I am, I know I received a message from my beloved Brandy Noel, who passed away October 11, 2008.

Brandy Noel

This holiday season, Fidose of Reality launched a dog advent calendar with a twist. Instead of turning over a page to count down the days until Christmas, we featured a new dog in need every day during the Advent Countdown. Readers were asked to donate $10—even if one person took the time to donate $10, at the end of the Advent Countdown, dogs in need received $240, which we are happy to report we exceeded. The $10 amount can buy a dog a bag of food, contribute to a much-needed surgery, or provide some treats to a dog in need.

Well, $10 also has a way of working a message from the Rainbow Bridge into the heart of a grieving dog mom.

On December 24th, I decided to feature Brandy Noel as the $10 Dog of the Day—for anyone who loved and lost a dog—to donate in their dog’s memory. As I’ve written before, I view my grief as a suitcase. Some days it’s a cosmetics bag full and others it’s Samsonite gorilla sized. Sometimes I feel like I’m on a carousel in the airport waiting for the form my grief will take. Do I wait days or weeks before I tear up and ache so very much or is today a carry on kind of day where I just take it with me? In any event, I know my luggage always arrives and never gets lost. I’ve learned losing a loved one means gaining a new identity. Victim of grief, survivor of hurt, and eventually carrier of pain.

Brandy Noel Mighty Dog

Do you ever wonder if somehow a deceased loved one can see you, hear you, or give you a message they are okay? Regardless of one’s religious and/or spiritual beliefs, someday we all will reunite with our deceased loved ones; for some, Heaven is a place, for others life ends with death. If you think about it though, you someday will “be” where your love ones are and in that same state of being or the lack thereof. Call that “state” or “place” what you wish, or deny that one exists, but I received a message from the bridge.

Some folks believe in the magic of “Pennies from Heaven,” that whenever they find a penny on the ground, this is the sign of a loved one communicating with them from beyond. I’ve never had this happen to me and I never prescribed to that line of hopeful belief. I would, but it just never resonated with me.

This past Saturday, December 29, I was telling a family member how I wish Brandy Noel could let me know she is happy with what I am doing, that she is okay and she knows how much I miss her. At some point, anyone who has loved and lost someone—animal or human—thinks these things.

And then it arrived. A little piece of heaven come to Earth.

A $10 bill in an origami form from a PR Agency arrived in my snail mail box. “What would $10 buy you today,” the postcard beckoned. “To someone in need, this $10 can mean a hot meal, a blanket, or a ride home.”

ten dollar origami

Ten dollars. My final $10 dog of the day was Brandy Noel. I asked for a message and wondered if she was okay and proud of her mama and all I am doing in the name of dog. $10 and I felt so very rich. My little girl spoke to me and crossed heaven and earth to do so.

Am I inferring? Maybe. Is this wishful thinking for a vulnerable broken heart? Perhaps. Highly coincidental? Indeed. Does my heart beat dog? Without a doubt.

Do I believe Brandy Noel sent me $10 guised as an origami bird as a message loud and clear from the bridge? You bet your bottom dollar I know this much is true.

Brandy Noel cocker spaniel

So now Citizen Relations, the company who sent me the $10, asks what I will do with this money. I immediately knew: Paw it forward. My friend, June Myers, lost her Cocker Spaniel, Ziggy, much too soon this year, at the age of 10. In Ziggy’s name and so he can feel the love and another dog can be helped, I’ll be adding to the $10 and making a donation in Ziggy’s name to Moore Pawsabilities in Oklahoma City.

cocker spaniel ball

As I close out 2012 and look to 2013, I carry my little girl and her message with me. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t crying through these keystrokes. I will, however, know that miracles do happen and sometimes they come to us in the most unique forms possible. It’s up to us to open our eyes, believe deeply, and embrace them.

As we close a year out, paw it forward. Take $10 or 10 minutes of your time and do something, no matter how small it seems to someone. It will make a difference. Be well, be positive, and be happy.


  1. No one can write and touch a reader like you, Carol. I am crying through your every word. This entire article is filled with love; you sure know how to touch the hearts of many. Brandy will be forever loved. This was a wonderful way to end such a successful year for you.

    • I too am in tears. My Snuggles Cuddles Sunshine ( bunny) is my twin soul mate. I helped him on in his journey over 3 years ago. I’ve never had such a genuine/honest/loving relationship in my life. We are forever together. I’ve seen him and felt him here so many times. When it’s my turn, we’ll be together again

  2. Such a touching piece Carol. I believe and understand what you’re saying. Old Ted is with me everyday. A thought of him never passes without a tear held back. The pictures are so cute.. those darn Cockers just do have some sweet faces…

  3. Have tears in my eyes, you write so beautifully and I am so blessed to be able to read this, you went through it with me when I lost baby, my sweet little angel, my hero, my everything and to this day I believe she is sending me messages in little ways including the pennies from heaven, G-d bless you Carol, thanks thanks thanks so much with peace and love from Me and Layla xxxxxxxxxxx

  4. That’s was beautiful, Carol. I’m crying right along with you. I’m going to send some money in honor of my two babies right now

  5. That is a wonderful message you received from Brandy at the Rainbow Bridge! It made my eyes all drippy and I feel all warm and fuzzy!

  6. OMD I have tearing down my cheeks and I have 2 dogs licking my tears dry. As I remember my beloved Murphy that we lost of a twisted stomach. Schooner and Skipper are telling me it’s OK we are here beside and we will help through your crying. You lost Murphy but you now have 2 that will snuggle and give you kisses when you are sad.
    Carol you are a great writer and that is why I love reading everything you write. Today you brought tears a flowing. Happy tears remembering Murphy!

  7. Very touching indeed! I’ve had three such occurrences from rainbow bridge pets that are too strange to be coincidence. My first experience was with the cat I grew up with, I wrote this in one of my “answers” on Quora:
    “My cat passed away when I was 18, and I will admit that it was a bit of a surreal experience. You’ll have to take this for what it’s worth and draw your own conclusions, but I will describe what happened. I was in England at the time, on a year long work experience after high-school. I was home sick, so my parents did not tell my my cat (the one I had since four) started going downhill. As far as I knew she was in good health. One night I had an intensely realistic dream that she had died, and I was carrying her through a field, then I let her go and she ran off into this beautiful spot. I can remember it, 18 years later, perfectly. I woke up, and somehow knew she had died. I called my parents, who had just returned from the vets where she died, and were dreading telling me the news. On the phone I told them “she died, didn’t she”. For some reason, I never mourned and took the death well; I sincerely feel the gift of that dream – or whatever it was – took the pain that would have happened away.”

    The most recent is when I lost my soul dog, Mikey. Not only did he wake me out of a bad dream to come to him at the emergency vet, as he was beginning to die – but I had another surreal experience after he passed. I deal this in the section called “The aftermath” in the story of his life. You need to scroll to near the end:

    Regardless, true believer here. I love to read similar stories, like this one. Thanks for sharing!

  8. My heart is touched. I often have visitors who have passed visit my home, the scent of a familiar perfume is heavy in the room. Always the dogs will stare at something I can’t see and then their tails will wag. I completely understand and am happy for your gift.

  9. I am overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and kind words, shared experiences, and dog lovers uniting here. Thank you so much. It’s been quite the experience for me and reaffirms my love and passion for dogs.

  10. Carol this made me cry. I was thinking about my Nestlé and Goober while I was reading this. I love the way you can express so beautifully with words. Hugs Nancy

  11. I had a somewhat similar experience a few months after my heart dog Murphy went OTRB…I was out in the yard with her sister, my GSD Cecil and my new boy Bruno, and missing her very much. I was standing under a tree where she liked to lie in the shade when I looked down and saw something unusual…it was a large pice of polished rose quartz lying in the grass. Rose quartz is known as the gem of love, warmth & compassion…Now I’m not a particularly ‘cosmic’ person but the meaning of this was unmistakable…Murphy was sending me a message that though she was no longer able to be with me physically, we would be in each others’ hearts forever.

  12. What a wonderful message you received. I think so many times we actually miss the message because we are so caught up in thinking it can’t happen. Your girl proved to you that it can!

    What a lovely post.

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