I just got home from having my left eye checked and tested. I have the left eye surgery next Wednesday morning. I came in the door just now and there was blood on the floor again.
The vet doesn’t come in on Thursdays until 1 p.m., so I will be taking Charlie in then. Goodness, he just finished his antibiotic yesterday. Please don’t let this be something bad, I keep saying out loud.
Remember I told you just after Abi died that I put a very soft throw over the bed and then covered up at night with an equally soft blanket? Well, I’m still doing it.
It is just so comforting. I believe I called it a “comfort sandwich.”
I feel like I even fall asleep faster when sleeping in my comfort sandwich.
I might go a night when I push the throw aside. But I miss it, and the next night it’s back on the bed. I wash it every week and put it back on top of my bed covers.
You see, it is vitally important to be good to yourself when you’re grieving. When you’ve suffered a tremendous loss.
People will tell you they’re sorry, and that’s wonderful and kind and a form of respect. But no one really knows how you feel. No one knows exactly what you’re going through.
And so this is a time when you should give yourself a break. Who cares if the furniture isn’t dusted? Or that you’ve eaten the same thing all week long?
Or that you eat because you have to but everything tastes like cardboard.
That’s just how it is for awhile.
I miss Abi. I miss my sweet funny quirky girl. I cry. Not as often. But like now, when I’m writing about her, the tears are automatic. They flow like a river over stones.
I look at her framed photo and it almost does me in.
Some of you have emailed me and said that you’re grieving a pet. And sometimes the people around you, the people who are close to you, say the most ridiculous and hurtful things.
Like: “Well, now you’ll have more time for other things.” One of you wrote me that one. And I was so shocked at the idea that someone could actually say that to you.
Others have written that those around them think that grief isn’t as real when it’s a pet instead of a person.
Let me tell you, I am grieving Abi more than I’ve ever grieved anyone in my life. And that includes people.
And why shouldn’t I grieve so profoundly when she was with me 24/7, slept right beside me, and always looked at me with adoration and love?
These kinds of careless words sting. For someone to say something so obviously callous is like ripping skin off a fresh and painful wound.
Some want to be around others when they’re hurting to this degree. Others, like me, just want to be alone with their remaining pet.
I never know when a thought, a sight, a sound might bring on the intensity of my grief. And I don’t want to have to explain myself to anyone should I break down.
I need solitude. Lots and lots of solitude. Whether I’m grieving or not. So it just makes sense that I’d need it even more when I’m hurting so.
What helps me is Charlie. Looking into his deep brown eyes. Petting him. Singing to him. Which, by the way, I still do every single night. At least twice.
It has become routine. And we need that when we’re hurting. We need routine comfort.
For me it is sleeping between two very soft blankets. For you it might me something else.
“Grief doesn’t have a plot. It isn’t smooth. There is no beginning and middle and end.” – Ann Hood
But whatever you find that comforts you as you grieve, indulge in it. You don’t know when the sorrow will ease. But what comfort you can find is a welcome respite.
I have learned to laugh again at something silly. I’m sometimes distracted for periods of time and don’t think of Abi.
But when it does hit me that my baby is irretrievably gone, gone for good, something akin to panic rises up in me and it’s hard to breathe.
Loss is something we all go through. So love yourself while the intense suffocating grief is eating you alive. Find what comfort you can. You certainly deserve that.
“Grief is not a disorder, a disease or a sign of weakness. It is an emotional, physical and spiritual necessity, the price you pay for love. The only cure for grief is to grieve.” – Earl Grollman