I am heartbroken. Earlier this week, my favorite dog Mojo was run over by a car and killed.
I loved (no LOVE) this dog like nobody’s business, he was my fur baby… always at my side… my guardian, my guide to the bathroom, my lap warmer, my bed snuggler, my main fur man. He loved me so much that I even had a special voice for imitating him as if he could talk and tell me how much he adored me, “You are my master and I will love you and follow you where ever you go.” Sounds just like Dug from Up, and is much better in person, I promise.
Anyway, I hope you understand that this dog was special. In truth, he was everyone’s favorite. He didn’t bark, he was plain adorable, had the best smile and personality. He was truly one of a kind.
He’s gone now, due to a really stupid mistake and I am doing the best to forgive myself and others who played a part in his passing. Mostly, I am just trying to keep breathing because there are times when it hurts so much my chest feels like caving in. It hurts so much that I don’t want to think or be, I just want to disappear. That’s just the grief talking, so don’t get too worried about that statement folks.
Here’s what I’ve learned about grieving in this short time (I’m only on day three so be patient):
- Uncontrollable sadness comes in waves, so stick close to home the first few days/weeks.
- Wear the same clothes day after day if you want to. No one who loves you really cares how you smell.
- Accept that grief feels a lot like the stomach flu topped with a ton of sadness and crying.
- It’s okay not to eat, or to only eat the things that you can choke down, even if those things are ice cream and half and half.
- Be mad, really mad, if the situation requires it. The anger is a feeling and it won’t last forever.
- Protect yourself. If the situation involved boundaries being broken, you might need to establish some protection for yourself and your family, mentally or physically.
- Cry and cry as much as you need to. And talk to people while crying. I’ve made several phone calls this week where all I did was gulp and sob to the people on the other end. It’s okay, the vet/your parents/best friends/boyfriend/brother understands.
- When you are feeling up to it, eat on your very best gold-rimmed china to remind yourself that life is for living.
- Shower attention/much snuggling on the other living things in your household out of desperation. They might even like it.
- Stick together. If you have other people feeling the same grief, spend time comforting each other. It will bring you closer together and help the healing.
- Sleep with a stuffed animal and possibly carry one in your car for protection. I recommend: Boo the dog.
- Feel scared because life suddenly feels very dangerous/tenuous. You’ll feel safer in a week/month/year.
- Try not to focus on the death event itself. Understand what happened, yes, but replaying it over and over in your mind might not be super helpful (more gut-wrenching, likely).
- Remember the good times with your love. Create a way to remember them that makes you feel better.
- Stay in the here and now. Time cannot be rewound. Events cannot be undone.
- Focus on your healing. No one else can determine how bad you feel. Stand up for what you need to take care of yourself.
- Find people to talk to. This might be tough if you hate crying in front of people. Get over it, you will feel so much better talking to someone who understands what you are going through.
- Let people help you, let them in. I tend to want to shut people out and deal with my pain privately. But there will be people who want to help and understand what you are going through, open the door and let them in. Plus, they may be bringing chocolate or ice cream (see fourth bullet).
In the end, the only thing that really seems to help is time. Try to remember that each day you wake up is another day closer to feeling like life is worth living again. Hopefully you have the support you need to get through this process. I am very lucky that I have an incredible boyfriend, wonderful friends and family plus some kick ass coworkers to help me through it. Nothing will bring Mojo back (and that just kills me). But maybe someone can find solace in the points above. I’ve got to try and make something good come from this pain.