I’ve never really lost anyone really close to me before. I’ve lost grandparents, which was hard but I didn’t spend every single day with them. I’ve had breakups but usually none of them lasted longer than a year. Losing my baby boy Pilot was the most painful thing I’ve ever gone through in my 34 years and I’m still going through it.
I’ve had to figure out how to deal with this pain and continue on with my life. I know it may sound crazy but part of me just didn’t want to keep going without him. You see, he was what I looked forward to every single day when I came home from work. He loved me and never judged me, for how badly I feel about myself I felt ok with him, he loved me for me. Granted my husband loves me for me but the love you have with other people is complicated but the love you have with a pet is anything but complicated.
So to try to deal with the pain a few things have helped for me personally and maybe they can help someone else someday.
First off we made sure we had a last day with him but it was a hard last day as he was really sick at that point. I think Pilot was not well but he was glad to have some time with us, at least I hope that was the case.
When we brought him home after that last vet appointment we buried him in a special place in our backyard. We buried him with a blanket he loved, his favorite “taily toy” and the collar he wore when he went outside. That next weekend we picked up a bush and some plants to put around his grave, they’ll bloom in the spring. I have had a hard time going to his grave though but I know it will be something I’ll cherish eventually.
I also made sure to write about him and my feelings, I want to remember what I went through, I don’t want to forget it. I’m going through pictures and videos I have of him and plan on putting them all on a DVD. I even picked out a song for him. Haven’t been able to work on the pictures yet, it’s been too hard.
Also I ordered myself a necklace from etsy for myself and I hang it from my rear-view mirror so I can see it everyday. I even have a stamp of his paw from before I plan to someday get as a tattoo.
Being open about what I was going through online and to family and friends helped a lot. I got some wonderful cards and gifts that helped me with the process enormously. Grief is a very personal thing and we all go through it at our own speed but it helps having people care.
I still think about him every single day and it’s hard to explain what I feel, it’s a bit like I’m in this mixture of denial and depression, sometimes anger. Can you go back and forth between different stages? When I think that he’s gone I can’t help but feel it’s not possible, he can’t be gone forever. I can’t fully accept that I’ll never see him again, which makes it all that much harder. For all the pain I’m in now I don’t regret any of the time I got to spend with Pilot, I was very lucky to have him in my life. I read recently that grief is the price we pay for love and it’s worth it.