Alexa29
Hi, everyone. I posted Nala's story with cancer in the cancer forum. Long story short: Nala had a brain tumor and metastases in neck and shoulder. A month and a half after the diagnosis she couldn't walk or eat anymore, so we decided it was time to end her pain and we put her down.

It was the most stressing month of my whole life. My mother is still recovering from a severely broken wrist and I scored very high in every anxiety test I took online. Some of you may know that some important earthquakes have hit Mexico City in the last six months, well, I live in Mexico City and I have PTSD from the earthquake that hit the city in september. I haven't slept in almost six months.

And now I am so numb, like I'm half alive. I don't feel anything but a growing bitterness. I'm angry most of the time, but I don't feel sad. I haven't cried for Nala. I don't even miss her and God knows I loved her so much, she was the best dog and companion I ever had and I gave my all to her, not only while she was sick, but throughout her short life. But to be honest, I have never ever taken such good care of any other living being in my life, as I took care of Nala when she was sick. I'm honestly proud of myself.

I still have my Bimba and she seems to be missing Nala a lot. Now that I look back, Bimba was the best help I could have ever dreamt of while Nala was sick. But I feel guilty for loving Bimba. I don't want to repeat anything I did with Nala with Bimba, I still keep Nala's place like a sacred place in my heart and in my life where absolutely no one can go. It seems like I'm in denial.

I've lost three other dogs in the past. Schatzy was almost 17 years old when he passed and Khali was almost 15. It was easy to accept that they had to leave because they were old. Then came Lili. I found her one day lost in the streets, took her home and two months gone she was gone. It was a deep love at first sight and I still miss her a lot, but since I didn't know a thing about her health, I just accepted that I gave her two beautiful extra months of life, saving her from being killed by a car.

With Nala is completely different. I feel relieved, I know she is in such a better place. I saw the strongest dog I ever had suffering and struggling and crying in pain. Yes, I am relieved. I'm not afraid anymore cause she can't break her neck anymore, she's already gone! And then, boom! It all sinks in... She's gone... I just can't believe how fast it all happened, and so I feel this emptiness, this whole in my stomach, but I can't cry anymore.

I cried a lot when she was sick. I said goodbye almost everyday, I begged her to stop fighting so hard, cause she was only hurting herself by trying her hardest to walk. I'm so tired, I'm frustrated, I feel hollow and this house feels so empty, even when Bimba's playing and barking. But I can't say I miss Nala, it's just as if all this happened year ago and not just six days ago. Nala seems like a distant memory that's fading away.

And I know I need to cry, I need to grieve. I have swallowed my pain in the past and nothing good came out of it, just bitterness, extreme pain and depression. And I also need to honor Nala's memory, she taught me so much, I can't let myself fall into that downward spiral of bitterness and anger. But all I feel now is my face of an extremely bitter person.

If anyone has gone through something like this, please help me. I don't know how to help myself and I admit I am extremely tired of everything. Thanks in advance for your support.
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Lamont
I am touched by your story, having lived through a few disasters myself, 2 big quakes Loma Prieta, and Barra de Navidad, Jalisco and the Oakland fire of '91. My dog ran off during that fire, but I found him later the next day. Still have some shakiness around big wildfires, too, I am "better" with quakes, maybe cuz they are shorter? 

The loss of a your best friend is the hardest thing, ever. I've been crawling for 3 weeks now, and I am just at the point where I might be finally through the worst of it. Of course, that's what I thought on Friday morning, and it went downhill from there. I think the main thing is to just keep going, even if it's painful.

I offer you my sympathy, and hope you will stick around here and hear from those who've been supportive of me.

L
Bertie's Daddy
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Alexa29
I read some of your posts and you know what? It's okay to grieve! I felt exactly like that when my first dog died. There were days when I wouldn't go out of the house and stay all day in my pijamas. I even cut my hair because I needed to show how much everything had changed for me. My first dog was like the brother I never had and I always wanted. Being an only child and growing up with that little ball of fur changed my life so much... it showed me that true unconditional love exists!

In time you'll understand that your little angel came to teach you how to be a better person, to love unconditionally, to learn a lot of different ways of enjoying this life. It will take a while and you'll always remember Bertie, but there will come a day when you'll say to yourself and to Bernie in the rainbow bridge "thanks for everything, wait for me there and play a lot!".

It's so easy for me to say these things now, but I can't feel like that, not about Nala. Something is different, as if I wanted to erase every painful memory and in order to do that, I just avoid remembering her at all. Or maybe I'm just in survival mode still, dragging myself through all of this and I'm too tired and at the same time trying too hard not to fall apart.

The quake, my mom's wrist, Nala's cancer... I haven't had a single day without something to worry about in such a long time. And I can't just let myself rest, not now. My mother needs me, Bimba needs me, but I just want to sleep for a week, without showering, without changing my clothes, without eating. I can't seem to find joy in absolutely anything, not even for a moment. Maybe when I can have a break, I'll just burst in tears.

Anyway, we're here to support each other. I'm so glad you're letting yourself grieve and cry for your Bertie. It's the healthiest thing to do. But remember that he dedicated his life to make you happy and thatbyou can find joy in your memories. You'll feel better eventually.

I hope your dad goes trough a time of peace and ease, so you can be a little more relaxed, but remember that he needs you. Wish you all the best.
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gizmomybaby
Alexa am so so sorry to hear of the loss of nala & what you have been going through . I truly feel it in my hart for you and wish I knew what to say . Grief of our baby's is a horrendous thing to go through , I suffer depression and anxiety and am struggling after losen my baby 7 months ago , like you I still have another baby candy . To me they are my children . Maybe by numbing it and trying to not think about it is a way for you to cope plz dont be hard on yourself and maybe also you know shes out of her pain and that helps as its so horrible to watch them suffer. my son was to get pts and I fought back for him to go on for 25 months but sadly he took bad I couldnt watch him like that no more . Iv had times I feel angry with my son been took away from me , I feel a dont like the world a gave up with myself just existing in a world not living but ano I have to go on for mu candy . Plz plz stay on here you have friends here whom will help and support you , they got me through some real dark days , I still feel my hart has went through a grinding machine but I always say my boy is with me by my did saying come on mummy am here still xx plz know am thinking of you and am here and sending my prayers and hugs and love to you & your mum x Annemarie candy gizmo xxxcc
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Alexa29
Thanks Annemarie, thank you so much for sharing your story with me, it means a lot.

I could finally cry tonight. I spent two hours in the afternoon watering the garden, where all my late dogs lay to rest in peace. I thought I was going crazy cause I was obsessed with the bodies under the grass and earth. For a moment I wanted to dig and hold Nala in my arms once again, but I called my mother and she helped me deal ewuth that, by making me notice that bodies are what we can touch and see and feel and that my "going nuts" was my subconscious telling me how much I miss my baby cause I can't touch her or see her anymore.

I decided to water the garden cause it's about to rain and I didn't want Nala's body to get all wet. Then I realized that I have to stop protecting a lifeless body and I should the best to honor her memory and help the flowers over her body grow beautiful and strong. I needed to face that her body was there, but her soul is free now, free from pain, from sickness. I pushed myself ti stay in the garden and I made it through by remembering that maybe one day my body will also lay in a grave, in a cemetery where my family will go to visit me a few times a year or so, and therefore, Nala's body is in a much more beautiful olace, where flowers grow and close to us.

But at night, a few minutes ago, one of my friends from abroad sent me a video singing a beautiful Linkin Park's song (I'm a huge LP fan) and she was with her dog... The tears finally started running down my cheeks when I listened to the part where it says "and you're angry and you should be, it's not fair..." It all sank in. Nala's gone... and yes, I am extremely angry, yes it wasn't fair... I also can't stand the word cancer. There's another Linkin Park song that has that horrendous word in its lyrics. I got so angry when I was listening and singing to that song and realized what the word means in my life right now. I was so angry I wanted to punch the wall. I guess that's normal, but omg...

I need to turn off the survival mode. Thank God my anxiety is at a normal range now. I scored high on depression tests online, but low on anxiety tests, that's a relief. Now I need to allow myself to take a few days to mourn my baby, cause to me Nala was like my first daughter, though my mother said she was more like my sister. I don't care, Nala was like my first daughter after I lost my fursiblings Schatzy and Khali,

And now I have an actual furdaughter. Bimba's been extremely sad, she won't eat unless I feed her with my hands, she doesn't wwnt to eat from her bowl. I was worried she could be sick, so before rushing to the vet I made the test and tried to play with her while trying to feed her, it worked. I guess she's feeling super lonely. But anyway, we're taking her for check up as soon as we have enough money, cause it will cost like a lot and Nala's paliative treatment was not really cheap... I don't want to take any chances here, I won't make the same mistake again. Something's wrong with an obese pooddle who looked like a maltese when she first came home. Bimba's curls are showing after a proper diet, but she's still not losing weight. So... to the vet she'll go.

Thanks a lot again, Annemarie, and please please give lots of hugs to your baby. I hope our little angels are now playing together at the rainbow bridge, where there's no more pain.
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Alexa29
Last night I had a nightmare. I honestly don't want to share it cause I'm a little supersticious... but it had everything to do with dog cancer. I hate cancer so much! I always have, but since it took my Nala from me, I hate it more than ever. I woke up feeling miserable and guilty, yes, guilty. Finally I'm feeling something more than emptiness and numbness.

I took Nala home in such a way, that I always felt guilty of. She had been for two years with my cousin, but my cousin still wanted to give her in adoption, wit three kids and four dogs, I could understand how busy my cousin was, and after reading a rant at her baby daughter my cousin posted on a family group chat, I went to take Nala with me. No sweet goodbyes, the maid just gave her to me and we drive back home. Because Nala was used to eating dog food, we fed her the same, until we slowly introduced her fresh chicken and rice and vegetables mixed with her dog food. I blamed dog food for Lili's sudden death, but again, I didn't know a thing about her health cause she had been with me for just two months after rescuing her from the street. I should have given them both the usual food every dog has eaten in this house: chicken with rice and vegetables, no industrialized dog food.

I know my bad dream was caused by a TedTalk I watched before going to sleep, but I already questioned for several years the benefits of industrialized food. How can it be good for a dog? The ingredients ar perfect to feed cancer! If only I had seen this coming, if only I had changed Nala's life completely, maybe I could have saved her life...

And just as if this wasn't enough to make me feel so bad, I have to admit that I'm a smoker with a huge addiction. I smoke everywhere and in the last days I have been smoking even more in my room, where Bimba sleeps. I made a promise a few years ago: I'll stop smoking before my birthday this year. And I'll do it, I still have a couple months to quit, but right now, I can't seem to even smoke less.

I asked the vets if my addiction could've been the cause of Nala's cancer and they said no, her lungs were perfect... It was a brain tumor, nobody knows exactly where they come from. I still blame myself for a variety of reasons. But now I worry for Bimba. I need to quit smoking a.s.a.p, but I can't, I just can't, not when I'm going through this emotional hell, but I also feel like I should do it to honor Nala's memory. I still can't believe she's gone... I still can't believe she had cancer... this is all just too hard!

But I'm glad I'm finally feeling something, I don't care if it's guilt.
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Lamont
It took me 40 years to quit smoking. It's like trying to swim in quicksand. But you'll do it somehow.
It may not feel like you are making progress, but from over here, I can tell that you are.
Our feelings are never simple and we can't just dismiss them, and the present moment always seem to be right there.

If you take it one minute at a time, or one second if you have to, you'll be OK. It will take time, but it does get better.

L


Bertie's Daddy
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Alexa29
Thank you so much for your response. I feel like I've been writing here more like I would do in a journal, because very few people have said something, but it still helps. And I'm so glad you're still responding.

Yes, I feel like I'm making a little progress, at least it's really sinking in finally. I know about the steps of grief, but I was so tired and so numb, that I couldn't feel anything. Today I decided to take a little break from my survival mode and I did absolutely nothing. We just came back from Bimba's walk and I had a lot of fun buying her rain boots. Then I came back home, saw Bimba smell Nala's final rsting place in the garden and sniff.

Anyway, I'm allowing myself to cry and be angry and curse and whatever I feel like doing. It certainly helps. Thanks a lot again, my friend.
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