Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Grief

First of all, thank you all so much for your kind words of compassion. I've been reading some of them to my husband and it REALLY MEANS A LOT!!!! I've been on the phone for hours just talking to my friends and those who knew and loved Sampson. He had a lot of admirers. He welcomed all who came to our home over the years.


We've been in shock the past couple of days. My husband's boss told him to come back to work when he's ready. He's been my shadow for the past few days. Apparently he doesn't want me out of his sight. We've both been on separate and combined crying jags, walking around in a daze looking for him, aching for his return. We're fine for a while and then we see a tuft of hair (his hair is EVERYWHERE) or we hear sirens (being that we live downtown we hear them quite frequently) and we start bawling again cause he would always howl when he heard a firetruck. We drove around for hours yesterday just so we could stay out of the apartment. We cleaned up his things, packed away his towels and leashes, vaccumed and swept. We have programmed our lives around this animal and now there is this huge vaccum in this place. His mighty tail that would knock over drinks placed too close to the edge of the coffee table; the silent brown eyed stares at 8pm every single night that beckoned for his nighttime treat; the pounding of his tail against the door that preceded his tumbling arrival; closed doors were opened with his heavy snout, his prescence in his bed in front of the patio doors.


We spent most of yesterday driving around on pointless errands, just trying to stay busy. I went back to the clinic to get the blanket we had brought him in on. They had washed it and it was warm from the dryer. I had to make my husband eat something, and we made phone calls and emails to friends and family. Coincidentally, my MIL had to put down her dog Monday evening. Her beloved dog had been ailing for a while and they knew it was coming. So it was a doubly sad time for all of us.


I went to bootcamp again today. I didn't tell anyone. It's not a real chatty class anyway. I just needed a grueling workout to keep my mind blank. We did something called the "gauntlet" which involved a lot of stairs and a lot of drill style exercises. Too busy heaving my guts out to think much about anything than putting one foot in front of the other. Usually, after class, I rush back home to walk the dog, but not today. Hubby came to meet me and we hung out at a cafe and talked. I bumped into an acting colleague of mine, dog in tow, but it was nice petting her affectionate dog.


As we biked back home, I remarked that when we were trying to get pregnant, it seemed as if there were babies everywhere. And now, we had a similar problem, except everywhere we looked, there were happy dogs being walked by their owners. In truth, we live in a city full of strollers and dogs. And coffee shops.


We prepared to busy our day with more errands and the phone call while I was in the shower. When I got out, I heard my husband sobbing. Sampson was ready to be picked up. Eventually, we got to the vet clinic and we were presented with his ashes in a lovely urn and that poem about dogs leaving footprints on your heart and rainbow bridge and all that. They also took his pawprint in purple ink. That got me. They also signed a pet sympathy card. I left them a card as well with a couple of Sampson pics thanking them for their efforts. We cried some more. When we got home, I chanted daimoku for Samps, my husband by my side.


I went to spin class and when I came home, I found DH once again in tears. He alternates between tears and raging. I alternate between drinking, chanting and then tears. I hope that no one tells him that "he was just a dog". Seriously, that person will regret it. Seriously.


I know it will get easier, but right now, it's not. Right now, he's feeling seriously bitchslapped by life, once again, andwondering who the fuck sucked up all the good luck in the world and left us with the booby prize. Hubby likes to ask, why? I say, why not? I don't ask why anymore. The answer is not really important. It's not even relevant. Suck it up, buttercup, it's all just part of life. Nothing personal. Good people and good dogs die every fucking day. It could have been a lot worse. We were protected from watch him suffer through a long, painful inevitable death. It was quick and we were both there for him. As I swore I'd do. (Though at times it feels as if there's a time limit on our ability to stay trauma free.)


And now Baby Boy is back home with his pack where he belongs.


Once again, thank you for the e-cards and comments. They have been an enormous comfort.

6 comments:

Phoebe said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. It's tough to lose a loved pet. You'll have all the good memories of him in your heart. The grief takes time. I grieved over my cat who passed away last year for at least six months. I think the older you get, the more open your heart is and the longer you grieve. It's all ok.

Anonymous said...

The thing about animals is that--given their relatively short lives--they will always leave you with a broken heart. The other thing is that they are totally worth that broken heart.

Peace and blessings from Indianapolis.

luna said...

let him sob. he needs to feel this.

the first day I was home alone without our girlpup, I weeped prostrate on the floor or huddled in a cocoon on her favorite chair, for hours. we made a point to get out, go to movies, whatever we could for diversion. we were both so impossibly attached to that girl. it still hurts, more than a year later. last weekend was the anniv. of the day we adopted her, and just thinking about her love brought me to tears.

for a long time, and even still, the most painful image for me was often a pregnant mother on a walk with her dog and a stroller. some of my friends even, not just strangers.

I'm just so sorry for the loss you're feeling now. your hub too.

Wordgirl said...

Hi Deathstar,

I've been thinking of you and your husband and Sampson since I read the email. Just last night as I was walking around I thought of you and your chanting, your practice and community -- I sent a silent prayer up to the universe that you were enfolded in love and care in this difficult, difficult time.

It does seem, doesn't it, that when you've had your share of heartache that the world could spare you any more... I feel a deep kinship with you DS, and if I were near we could walk around that lovely park, or hideout in a coffee shop somewhere and just talk.

Know that you all are never far from this stranger's heart -- south of the border.

xo

Pam

dmarie said...

Again, I'm so sorry for you and your husband. I know your soul hurts.

Foreverhopeful said...

So sorry for your loss again. I know how our pets really becomes one of the family and they become our children. They are everything to us so I know how hard the loss is. I'm glad you have each other and your friends/family. I'm here thinking of you.