Grief Has No Expiration Date

It is cool outside, around 65 degrees.

The wind is blowing the tree branches on the patio. I watch them dip and dance from my spot here on the couch. Charlie of course is right beside me.

Tomorrow marks four months since Abi died.

I think back on her funny antics. I remember them, but I can’t see them quite as clearly. The image is not as vibrant.

I suppose this is what time does to keep us from throwing ourselves off a bridge. The memories flicker and dim, but are still there.

My heart was broken into a million pieces. And like Humpty Dumpty, I didn’t think I could ever be put back together again. There will always be a piece that is missing.

Her name was Abigail Rose.

The sharp knife that plunged into me the day she died is dulled just a little by all the days that have passed since.

The other night when I was on the phone talking about Charlie to Dr. Poteet, I said, my voice cracking: “My little dogs have meant the world to me.”

And he said: “I imagine about as much as all my little dogs have meant to me.”

Grief quote

That gave me pause. Of course. Grief is universal. It doesn’t belong solely to me, or to you or anyone else.

Anyone who has loved has lost.

Abi my late dog

I could not have loved her more.

She captured my heart from the beginning and it was tethered to her throughout the rest of her life.

My sweet baby girl. What I would give to have you back for just a little while longer.

Quote about grief

Those first days and weeks, I sat with my sorrow. I held grief in the palm of my hand. I didn’t know what to do with it. I wanted to throw it away, but it clung to me.

It worked itself inside me and then became part of me.

I cried until I thought I would float away in a sea of sadness. I wept deep gut-wrenching tears that emptied the ache of my sadness only briefly.

Until the tears came again.

And again.

 

Grief quote

How you go through the phases of grief is different for everyone.

I created a Pinterest board of grief quotes. Somehow, knowing someone else had the same feelings of loss I felt gave me a bit of peace.

A whole community of sorrow I could visit and see that they did in fact survive it. And live to tell the tale.

Grief quote

I know some of you are grieving over losses too. You email me and we chat back and forth, letting a little of it out. Making the load less heavy.

Which makes me think about that old song “Lean On Me.”

Sometimes we just have to lean on someone else for awhile till we feel strong enough to stand on our own.

In the night of death, hope sees a star, and listening love can hear the rustle of a wing. ~ Robert Ingersoll

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26 Comments

  1. oh, Brenda, this breaks my heart. I know you loved Abby so very much as I’ve read your blog for many a year……back before you left Texas.
    My kitties are my treasures and joy, and I know how it hurts to lose them. I am so very sorry for your great loss.

  2. I lean on you a lot Brenda! Your blog brings me comfort on so many things – over the years you have helped so many ! I hope you know you are an every day HERO in blog world and in life. Abi is watching over you and Charlie for sure. I think my little terrior watches over me too – still since crossing the Rainbow Bridge. Have a great evening Thanks so much for being you and sharin gyour life

  3. Sophie is the 6th dog we’ve had over the years. Thankfully, all of our dogs have lived to old age. It was so devastating to me each time we lost one. But it was a testament to how much we loved them…that we ever adopted another…knowing we were willingly going to go through that grief again. They have brought so much love into our family. My heart hurts for and with you, Brenda…xo

  4. Thank you Brenda yes I lost my kitty and my brother the same day .I still can’t believe this happened .My kitty was a beautiful Maine Coon breed orange in color ,someone could have taken him but he was not friendly with strangers .He just disappeared !
    I am still kinda numb about how this happened .
    I hope both our grief becomes manageable and Charlie improves ,you need him badly to be there for you .Hugs !
    Have a great week !

    1. Oh, Clyde the cat in Texas was I’m almost sure a Maine Coon cat, or at least partially. That was the smartest cat I ever had. He just came to my house one day and the dogs chased him and he fell in the pool I had at the time. Rescued him and loved him from that minute.

  5. I sit here crying as I read this ,I lost my brother in January everything said here I can relate to .
    I too have felt like I died too and just wasn’t buried .My feelings change from day to day as I am sure yours do also .
    We are going to get thru this I just don’t know how !
    My heart goes out to you .
    I also lost my precious kitty I let him outside the night my brother died and I never saw him again .I still do not know what happened if he was stolen or a coyote or hawk got him .We searched and searched for him and never found him.
    Life is very unpredictable and sometimes very painful .
    I am having a hard time today as I feel you are too !
    I pray tomorrow will be better for both of us thanks for sharing .
    I needed the tears today ! They are cleansing !

  6. Like Joe Biden said at the funeral of John McCain “someday a smile will come to your lips before a tear comes to your eye.” I hope that day comes for you soon. I am also in tears reading this.

  7. I still miss and grieve my sweet baby boy Duncan that we lost in ’08. And my sweet baby boy Seamus we lost 3 years ago.
    Grief does change it’s faces ~ and so does our response to it.
    Doesn’t mean we love them any less ~
    Sending you thoughts of comfort, support and hugs ~
    bobbie

    1. It’s much better than it was. The first two months I didn’t know how I’d live without her. And it isn’t easy. I miss her terribly.

  8. Your posting is timely Brenda as last week passed the 6 month point for me and I spent it so much of it crying my heart out. Six months I thought and still crying like a baby.

    Grief is universal and I do feel it important to remember this. Every single day somebody somewhere is losing someone that really mattered to them. Another heart is being broken and another soul somewhere is also now wondering how they will go on. We can separate out from humanity but I think we need remember too that although we are all different … we are also one in the same.

    I don’t think of my grief as greater than or less than anyone’s. The only thing that distinguishes my grief in my mind is the fact that it is mine. I accept my lot too. Knowing that a year from now, or even years from now, grief will come to revisit and the tears will flow. No time limit indeed. I don’t look for an end and I don’t look for a new pet (not an answer for me) and I absolutely don’t look for clarification on the why’s of my grief from anyone other than God and myself.

    This law of living is something none of us escape and this life/death thing can be the hardest chasm we ever cross. I read a little blip the other day that said, “God’s angels always come is disguise” and I reflected on how incredibly true that is. I do remember to thank God I had my angel and not only did I have him … I recognized him.

    And … if all this pain, angst, suffering and outright devastation didn’t come for a plan …then NONE of life has one.

  9. Brenda,

    I can barely see through my tears, reading this post. I know you understand. I feel your grief as I feel my own.

    Susan

  10. four months??? why does it seem like just last week? that was always the worst part for me.
    sometimes the wave would come and it felt like in the time that it was. and then I would wake in the morning and it would be as fresh as if it had just happened. it must be our mind allowing us little by little to accept it. and in the end we do because we have to. I am loving the coolness of this day. I have windows open. and it’s a fresh and cleansing air that comes in. wishing it for you and Charlie too.

  11. Oh Brenda, I’m going on over 2 1/2 years since my Charlie died. I miss him still and I know I always will. My sweet Annie is a love and I’m so glad to have her in my life, but there was only one Charlie Kitty and I will miss him until the day I die. I understand your grief and I share in it! Hugs.

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