The first day in my life when I have no dogs living with me in the house. After three weeks of sickness Cookie passed away on January 18 and after over four months of illness Troy passed away on January 22.
Loss rears its ugly head at the most unexpected times. I could not sleep well as I have been keeping vigil, especially the last two days of Troy’s life. I kept monitoring his breathing. So unconsciously, I kept doing it still after he passed, to suddenly wake up and realise that he is no longer there.
Then again, I get up in the morning and there are no dog beds around mine.
The room looks much larger and very empty. The fireplace mantle shelf now has framed photographs of my family, not medicines, syringes, gauze and the last prescriptions for both Cookie and Troy.
I open the door expecting to hear the sound of nails on the wooden floor following me out of the room, expecting to see them rush before me to show me what they want…go down to the garden to do their business or to the breakfast room for food? The silence is deafening.
Then this long stretch of emptiness. No shots that have to be given at a certain time, no drip that needs to be hooked up, no meal that needs to be planned…nothing. I can actually shower whenever I want. Freedom? Maybe, in a sense. But do I want this “freedom”/emptiness?
Grief has seven stages and I’m still in the first one of denial. I’ve been through grief before and know that the only way – at least for me – to get through it is by exorcising through writing about it, and by throwing myself into a whirlpool of activity. I am now working on both.
Grief for the loss of someone you love is one of the hardest emotions to endure – a mixture of pain, loneliness, self pity, anger and loss. Until all those emotions are sorted out and finally resolved, it takes some time.
God give me the wisdom to do what I can to get through that time quickly and with a minimum of damage. Intellectually I realise that both Cookie and Troy are better off, free of pain, but emotionally I am in the middle of the storm. They say time heals, but time sometimes is very, very slow.
Rest in peace Cookie and Troy, and I pray for some peace for me too.