Warning: loving a dog can lead to a broken heart.
Would I have adopted my first dog had I been warned? Probably. I didn’t get my first dog until I was thirty-five years old. Before then, I had no idea about the enormous bond that occurs between human and dog. Of course, I had heard about it, but hearing about it from others is trite in comparison to the experience. Not to mention, loving anyone is a risk usually worth taking.
Don’t get me wrong, I know that loving any pet (cat, rabbit, bird, etc) can lead to a broken heart. I’m focusing on dogs right now, because my heart is broken from loving a dog who left this earth just three short weeks ago.
You know that five-stages-of-grief thing? Well, it’s not just a cliche, it’s the absolute truth. It seems like I’m mostly experiencing stages two and four . . . anger and depression. When I’m not crying, I’m pissed off. Sorry to put it so bluntly, but the crankiness tends to do that to me lately.
I don’t like being this way. I always begin my days with an inspirational reading, along with some prayer and meditation. It starts me off with a burst of positive energy, at least it did until three weeks ago. Doing that same routine seems futile now. Nothing is the same without my dog, and neither is my morning burst of positive energy.
Sometimes I tell the grief to hurry up, then realize that’s futile, too. Sometimes I try to ignore the grief and pretend it isn’t there. Again, futile. There is no resisting the power of grief.
People keep telling me that love, devotion and faithfulness of a dog is worth the heartache. That’s not always comforting when I’m walking in a fog of emotion. But, when I’m using my rational, thinking brain, and speaking from love, I remember how the two dogs I’ve loved made me a better person. Bonding with them changed my life. I can’t begin to articulate the impact they had on helping to mold and change me.
I miss the Lori I was before these dang five stages of grief. I usually love to laugh and won’t go to bed without having at least one laugh each day. I’m still following through with that usual laughter motto, but my laughs aren’t from the gut. In other words, they aren’t really penetrating the hurt.
Thanks to my readers for bearing with me as I work this through in some blog posts. I’d say that experiencing grief is part of growing as a person, but then I’d just get pissed off again, because this growth-through-grief thing sucks. However, this point does remind me of this quote I once posted.
It’s not time to bring another into my heart, but who knows what the future holds.
During times of grief in your life, have you ever taken notice of yourself experiencing those five stages?