JinglesMom
I thought that I would post something that has been weighing a bit heavy on my heart lately. I have just reached the point in this long, lonely journey of grief, when I am finally able to speak of my sweet little ones without completely breaking down. I can so remember the times when I was not even able to say their names, or look at their photos without my tears falling like rain. Whenever I tell cute and happy stories about my three little angels to customers and coworkers at my job, or to anyone for that matter, in response to their wonderful and amusing tales about their pets, I am met with what could only be called a sympathetic look and a deafening silence. It seems as soon as I speak of my loss, the conversation immediately falls flat, as much as I try to keep my little stories lighthearted and sweet.

 These same people are always telling me all about their pets and how they brighten up their lives, and so often they show me their pictures. The pride in their pets is obvious, but why should it be any different for me just because my special little ones are not physically here with me anymore? They are and always will be here with me spiritually, in my heart, in my mind, and with every fiber of my being. They are still here with me in every single way that counts. Why are so many people uncomfortable to speak of our beloved ones at the bridge? Are they fearful of their own fur babies having to go toward the light at some time, does it put that twinge of fear into their heart, as though discussing it will cause it to happen, I really do not know. All I know is that it would be so nice to carry on a two way conversation, and for them to ask me about them and for them want to know more. Just because the chapter is over does not mean that we have to close the book. I will never close the book, and at the end of the last chapter there will always be a very important note in capital letters, TO BE CONTINUED...

When someone lets me know that they have experienced a devastating loss, I try to be there for them in every way, and I tell them how very sorry I am, and I make sure to ask them all about their pet and if they are able to talk about them. I can usually tell if they are at the point where talking about their lost one would be healing and not cause them to feel the heartbreak all over again. I am so proud of my dear little ones and the way they changed my life. They brought such an incredible joy and love into my world, and they made me who I am today, and who I will become tomorrow. They made such a difference and they mattered …. they really mattered. I know deep down in my heart that these silences are not the result of those discounting my loss, or feeling as though it is just an insignificant blip on my radar, but may simply be a result in not knowing what to say, and being at a loss for words when they find out that my pets are no longer here on this earth with me.

I have learned first hand that when someone speaks of their beloved pets who have left this world, to feel their sadness so deeply with my heart, but to also feel the bright and sparkling hope that their little ones bring to them even now. I will never stop talking about my Jingles, my Jasper, and my Pootie Tang, and I will carry their sweet and beautiful spirits with me every single day for the rest of my life, until our eyes meet once again, and we walk into that warm and radiant light together. We may not be able to see them with our eyes, or reach out and embrace them with our arms, but they will always and forever be our little piece of beauty in the midst of the coldest and darkest night.
Pamela Lynne Crawford
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BorderCollieLover

Pam:

  I think most of us in the pet loving community  can certainly identify with your story. It does seem that most people will turn a cold shoulder towards us as soon as the dialogue turns to grieving. I think a lot of it is that people fear their pet's own mortality. I can recall several conversations with other (alleged) pet lovers that turned sour as soon as I mentioned that my beloved dog had passed. One woman in particular, became a total cold fish when I mentioned the word death. She seemed so uncomfortable, so out of her element that I felt like a real idiot when I brought up the subject. Is the human psyche so frail, so tenuous that we can't even reach out to others in our time of need? Unfortunately, the short answer is Yes. We've become so ingrained with a loathing of depressing subjects that we almost automatically remain silent when confronted with them. I am so sorry that you had to endure that. You deserve much better. Please feel free to post about your (3) babies. We all want to hear more about them. I know that they were so special to you.

Sending peaceful thougts your way,

Jim
Jim Miller
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JinglesMom
Dear Jim,

Thank you so much for your very kind words which really did mean so much to me. I do believe that you are so right when you speak of others fearing their own pet's mortality. I can relate to your story about the one woman becoming a total cold fish when you mentioned that your beloved dog had passed, because that has happened to me also. They become detached and tend to look away, or change the subject, really? I can pour my heart out to you about my little one who I have lost, and you are so uncomfortable and at a loss for words that you cannot even dignify my profound loss and grief with a reply? I do know that I have experienced such sadness over this, and so I thought that writing it down might be healing and a release of sorts. I never want to become silent because of this, and I never not want to tell their stories and say their name for fear of this response, but I will prepare myself for it, and try to not let it bother me. Just talking about my kitties makes me feel better, and when I say their name, it is a comfort, and it keeps me connected to them. No time, distance, or separation could ever break the special bond we share, and that is where so many fall short on their understanding.

Your words really did ring so true when you wrote  "Is the human psyche so frail, so tenuous that we can't reach out to others in our time of need." It really is a shame that people cling so tenaciously to life and the living, when they do not even realize that loss and pain touches us all at one time or another, and if we can confront it head on and break down that veil even for a few moments, and feel our precious ones with us still, well that is a real victory and triumph. I do deserve better, after listening to their stories over and over again with my heart literally breaking in two, but never letting them know my pain, and always sharing in their joy and happiness, genuinely and without hesitation, yes I do deserve so much better, and so do my kitties. I will never not speak of them, and I will never not remember them, and I will never not share them with the world, my little rays of sunshine, my sparkling shining stars, and the sweetest little songs in my heart.

 Thank you again Jim for your kindness and for your wonderful and compassionate post filled with such perception and insight, you really do understand, and just knowing that I am not alone makes all the difference in the world. I am so grateful for your support and friendship on this forum, it really does help me to keep hope in my heart and courage in my soul, while facing another day without the dearest little loves of my life. Sending hugs your way, Pam 

Pamela Lynne Crawford
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Living_with_tragedy
I just wrote the same thing to a friend. Although the silence here is deafening except for my crying.

~ Parker's Mom
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JinglesMom
Dear Parker's Mom,

I am so sorry that you are hurting and I really do understand. Your words were so sad about the silence being deafening except for your crying. I wish that I had the words that would make this just a bit softer and gentler for you, but in reality, there are none. We just have to walk through the fire and face each day without them, knowing that we did the very best we could to keep them healthy and happy. I know that for so many of us the guilt is always there just waiting to envelop us and make this journey of grief so much harder, the guilt can be relentless, but they would not want us to feel the devastating effects of that G word. They knew how much they were loved, and they know now. Sometimes we just have to try to let go of the sorrow for just a few moments in order to feel their sweet and beautiful spirits with us once again.

 Just remember that you did your very best for your Parker from day one. We never know when we seek out the advice of the doctors what the outcome will be. We all wish that we could have a do over, every single one of us on this forum would give anything to have another chance to do it all differently and make it better and make it right, but sometimes fate steps in and what is meant to be happens. We want so badly to have and take control of the situation, but sometimes it is just out of our hands, and we have to accept that as much as it hurts. I would move Heaven and Earth to do things differently with my three beloved kitties, but when all is said and done, I have absolutely no doubt that I did the very best I could for them, and most importantly of all, when they started their journey across the bridge, they knew how much they were  loved, and they could feel me with them, walking right beside them.

It is the same with your sweet Parker, he knows how much he was loved here on this earth, and he can feel your love for him even now. You were and are a wonderful and loving mom to your Parker, and he is still with you in so many ways, just say his name, feel his presence, and talk to him. I truly believe that they can hear every single word we say, the bond cannot be broken, and he will be with you until your eyes meet once again. I believe with all of my heart that we will see them again, so we have to try to face each day with hope in our heart and know that they are waiting for us in their beautiful new world, they are so much closer than we think. I hope and pray that the light and love of your precious boy will get you through the darkest of nights and help you to face a brand new day filled with the sweetness and love of your special little one. Take care and know that you are in my thoughts and prayers always. Sending lots of hugs your way, JinglesMom
Pamela Lynne Crawford
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