So I have been trying to post here about once a month since I started this old blog back in 2011 and I have not always managed that but, honestly, I’ve also got my hands full with my Grandma’s House DIY blog which sometimes feels like it is growing so fast I can barely keep up! It has also been a BIG learning curve as I’m usually just the designer when it comes to websites. Being hands on, a marketer, a promoter, a writer and every other conceivable person to a website that just keeps getting bigger has really been amazing! But, also, leaves me pretty bone dry when it comes to writing blog posts for this little old website of mine. Not to mention getting married last year and settling into our “new” house :) Back in March I had started a blog entry here and intended to get back to it when the worst thing I could ever imagined happened. My dog died on Easter. I had to make the announcement across all of my social platforms (As Diesel had become a bit of a celebrity through Grandma’s House DIY) and ended up having to write about it so many times that I could not bare to write about here too. Am I far enough away from it all now that I can write honestly here without crying through the whole damned thing? I doubt it.
Trying to write this blog post makes me want to bang my head on my desk repeatedly and then crawl under it and never come out again. I can’t bare that he is gone yet. I can’t bare the fact that he was perfectly happy and normal and then an hour later struggled up stairs so he could be with me when he died. I can’t bare that he came to say goodbye. I can’t bare the memory of my new husband burying his face in Diesel’s neck and telling him, “I loved you too boy, I’ll miss you so much.” I cannot bare that in only two hours my wonderful Big Beasty was buried under his Oak tree in our back yard and all we could do was sit there, grave dirt on our shoes and under our finger nails, wondering what the fuck just happened.
I have heard grief described in so many ways in the past. I am not a stranger to grief. In five years I buried my three child hood dogs and two grandma’s. No, I am not a stranger with the Reaper at all. I have heard grief described as a vast chasm, as something that must be “gotten through” a “process” that takes insurmountable amounts of time to be “gotten over”. All of that feels at least somewhat true but grief for me as always been a person. Grief is a part of me. When I go to change the radio station in my car she stops my hand and says, “I’m so sorry but he died.” When I got to get ready in the morning she puts her hand on my shoulder and says, “He’s dead.” At work she stops me getting up for coffee to tell me, “He’s gone.”
Grief is the girl at the foot of our staircase, her arms wrapped around the fleeting warmth of her dead dog’s big neck touching, touching and touching. Rubbing the tips of his little ears. Remember this! Don’t forget exactly what they feel like! You will never get to do this again. She is my recording. Grief, when I was incapable of anything, touched his big paws and breathed him in over and over and over. She is my memory and she is still there, holding his head in her lap. Grief stayed with him while we dug his grave, distracting ourselves from the horror. She needed no distraction, this was her job, to remember, to stay, to touch and see every last detail that will never be again.
She stops me, still, from time to time, wraps her arms around me and tells me, “I’m so sorry. He’s dead.” And I nod and acknowledge her and continue on while she goes back to him, goes back to remembering. I am getting “better” I don’t try to feed him in the morning any more and I don’t let myself think about how much I miss waking up with him cuddled up beside me. I can’t handle many memories yet and we have all been trained to keep it together! I try but I don’t always manage it. I wrapped a big old blanket around me the other night and was engulfed with my big dogs smell and I cried and cried.
I don’t believe grief is something we get over, I believe it is something we get used to. So I’m going to end this with a little poem I wrote because I don’t know how else to end it. This one is for Diesel – love you forever.
Do not touch those tears
they’re not for you
Do not try to console them
or catch them
or sweep them away
Don’t you dare
they’re not for you
they’re for him.