Earlier this week while I was chatting with a friend, she asked me what was wrong.
I whispered ever so softly – “I miss my dog”…
I whispered because it’s been two years since Leo’s sudden passing and I thought I should have been further along in this process. #Iamnot
Sunday would have been (or is it still?) Leo’s 6th birthday.
At 4 years old he was already close to 100 lbs…
If he was still here, would he have –
- gotten taller?
- out grown his Wilson soccer ball?
- remained shy around strangers?
These questions (and others) house way too much real estate in my head. I rarely talk about it – because…
…well I don’t know. Maybe because I’m secretly worried people will think I’m strange. #amI?
Many people (especially ones w/o dogs) don’t understand the real grief you feel when you’ve lost a dog.
Of course their condolences are sincere when it happens, but do they realize the pain continues as time goes on? Are they able to connect the dots that this is why you’re still crying, irritable, or just “not yourself” at times.
THEY SAY –
When your coping with a pets death, you should –
- Give yourself time AND permission to grieve: It’s extremely important to remind ourselves that “love is love” and loving a pet is no different from loving a person #aintthatthetruth
- Avoid those “He was just a pet” people: You know the type. The ones who never really understood the bond between you and your pet. Believe it or not – they’re genuinely trying when they say things like – “it was only a dog” or “just get another one right away.” They really mean well #forgivethem
- Seek out support: Find some pet loving people who will understand what you’re going through.
MY PERSONAL FAVORITE –
“Only by giving my loss expression will I begin to heal.”
So that’s what I’m doing.
When the grief becomes overwhelming, I’m re-teaching myself to –
- Ride the wave of emotions: No I’m not hysterically screaming and crying out loud in public. But if I start to feel sad or melancholy – I go with it
- Talk to friends: no more steering clear of any loving, comical Leo stories. I embrace them and share openly in the memory
- Talk to strangers: when I’m asked questions about the breed, there’s always an opportunity to mention Leo and now I do.
I’m learning to accept the fact that Leo has left my life and I will never be the same…
But bit by bit, more and more, I’m also learning to express myself in ways that are uniquely me!
And I’m doing it more often, doing it the best way I know how – with feeling ❤️
Some Angels Choose Fur Instead of Wings…