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Lost My Best Friend


OldTrojan

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Yes, it will be a challenge to find him the right home, but I don't want to go there until he's gone, esp. with Kodie, he may turn out a fine dog but I don't want to see him again, it was way too traumatic.  I also don't want him around my grandchildren, even if he has been fine with them, you don't know until it happens...

Thanks for your wishes, Lord knows I've been through way too much trauma with my hands, no coming back from it, this pain is for life.  So is the loss of strength.  I have to hire more and more done it seems.

It's a special person that's a dog groomer, that says a lot about her.

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OldTrojan

Hi Kay:

I’m so sorry to hear of your hand problems.  Over the decades, especially when I was young and athletic, I’ve had several hand injuries, and stitches that were not supposed to get wet, which is impossible to avoid.  Since you use your hands so often, healing is a very slow process for hands.  It is hard to be patient, I know.

Also sorry about the pretty dog that has been biting.  There are trainers to cure that, but probably only in larger population centers.  Bear’s older brother started doing that for some reason.  He bit one person that I know of, but became aggressive and threatened many others.  I couldn’t stop him, and his real owner, my landlord, made no attempt, as he generally ignored him anyway.  A person here with a big fenced yard and several other dogs offered to take him in.  I was saddened, but figured that I could give him treats through the fence daily on my morning walk, and stop by later in the day a couple of times a week to take him for a walk.  Instead, my landlord killed him.  I was furious, and miss him still.  But, dogs can’t be allowed to bite people.

On that subject, I joined you as a dog bite victim three days ago.  I’ve mentioned that there is a real problem here with dogs that bite.  Most people let their dogs run loose, both good and bad dogs.  I was doing my early “Bear walk” and a nice dog that I know was attacked by one of the bad dogs that I have often had to hit with rocks.  Foolish, but I tried to intervene, and was kicking the bad guy repeatedly.  An acquaintance was there walking his dog and helped by hitting the bad dog with one of his crutches.  After a while, the bad dog decided to stop chewing on the nice dog and to chew on me.  Five punctures and bled quite a lot, but when I got home and cleaned up, it wasn’t serious and doesn’t require any stitches.

Wednesday was the nine week anniversary, and I seem to be doing a little better, finally.  I still cry quite a lot at certain times of day, and miss Bear terribly.  I have a very long way to go just to be functional again.  I had to remove his picture from my screen saver, as that elicited too much pain for me, especially at night when he’d normally get his good night treat and kiss on the head.   He’ll be back up as soon as I can do so without the terrible grief I feel when looking at him on the monitor.  I know that I will never be the same again, but the slow pace of recovery is miserable and I am disappointed in myself.

Good luck with your hand.

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OldTrojan,

Sorry to hear about your bite and that there are so many issues where you live with the "wild" dogs. I am sorry that Bear's picture (screensaver) causes you the pain it does. I hope that you can get to the point you can put his picture back "up" soon. I know having the pictures of my "friends" and my loving wife does help me to "talk" to them and tell them how much I miss them. I am nowhere near okay with their deaths but it helps me. I would not be disappointed in how you are "recovering" because everyone handles grief differently.

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Please do not feel down on yourself, when my husband died I can't count the times I put his pictures up, took them down, depending on how it made me feel, we do what we have to in order to get through this...finally they were up to stay.  A reminder of the only man I ever had fully reciprocal love with.  The most caring man in the world, I did not see how the sun could not shine without him in it.  Didn't it realize that he had died?!

I am so sorry you took a hit to your hand, you likely saved that dog's life, so horrible that this should happen.  I have not heard from my son in six days so do not know the outcome of Enzo.  My hand does not look good, will go back to the doctor this week as I want his opinion and may have to renew the dreaded antibiotic, ugh.

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KayC,

I am sorry you are having an issue with the latest incident healing. I know from my loving wife's many hand problems that sometimes it takes many "visits" to find out what does or doesn't work, maybe the wrong antibiotic because of the "infection". It does happen because of all of the resistant germs out there these days. Sadly that what one of the "things" that finally was too much for her she was septic and they couldn't figure it out in time to treat along with the other issues she was going through.

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OldTrojan

Thanks for the encouragement, Kay and John.  If I knew someone with this kind of grief for so long I’d be sympathetic, but worried that it had gone on for so long.  9+ weeks is a very long time.  He was everything to me, and I miss him terribly, but I should be able to move on. Acknowledging that I can’t ever be quite the same again.

Kay, your doctor may want to prescribe a different antibiotic; it is not good to take too much of the same one.

I have improved with some small things.  I can look at the reef at low tide now and be sad, but not cry.  This was very special to Bear for walks on the 3-4 days per month that we could do so.  I started eating breakfast cereal with milk again.  Bear loved chewing up the milk boxes when I was done.  It was tough throwing out that first one last week.  Sometimes when I took full ones out of the fridge he had a “gimme that” look on his face.  I’m still not cooking dinner, though.  He would patiently wait on the kitchen floor for his bit, and I talked to him while cooking.  Cooking by myself will be a big step forward for me.  Soon, I hope.

It’s a sad season now.  There are a couple of neighborhood female dogs in heat, and they are surrounded by groups of male dogs.  Since people let their dogs roam free here, these groups are tantamount to gang rape.  I feel so sorry for the females.  But, this also leads to violent fights between the males over the females, and sometimes serious injuries.  On my morning “Bear walk” this morning this played out in the parking lot in front of the store here.  A nice female that was a friend of Bear’s was surrounded by five males, sometimes fighting with each other over the female.  One of the males being attacked was another of Bear’s good pals.  I learned my lesson about intervention a few days ago, but threw rocks at two of the males attacking the nice dog, and he then followed me back home behind the store for sanctuary, and spent three hours there.  There was nothing that I could do for the female.  I wish that people would keep their females inside during this time, but people here don’t care.  Tough place for dogs, and those who like them.

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OldTrojan,

I also have many "triggers" from my loving wife and my pets dying, memories and routines like when she was cooking and the dogs were "begging" or how I would walk behind her and hug her or "grab" her butt. I was only "cooking" for MIL after my loving wife died and I wasn't eating much, since MIL died in August I don't cook at all and just barely eat still. My dogs all loved peanut butter and whenever I eat it all I think of is them. Actually they all begged from me and I gave them food all the time so anytime I do eat all I think of is how much I miss them. Missing my loving wife is a whole different set of triggers and emotions but I do understand what you are dealing with. Many people told me to get another dog but I don't know if I can go through all of this again.

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One thing I've learned about the grief journey is that there are no "shoulds" that apply!  No timeline, none for how we handle it or how long it takes...it takes what it takes, it's individual for each of us, so many things factor in, I've even said "probably our family placement factors in!"  Seriously, everything affects how we do this, our own coping mechanisms, experience, personality, resilience, how deep our love was/is, the interaction we had, you name it.  No one can judge us for how we do this or how long it takes, not even ourselves.  Sometimes we need to lower our expectations of ourselves and give ourselves the gift of understanding and patience, part of our self-care.  :wub:

13 hours ago, John9 said:

Many people told me to get another dog but I don't know if I can go through all of this again.

I love dogs, I have love to give, I knew no dog would ever be my Arlie, yet life seemed empty without a loving companion in it, so I decided to adopt.  I don't know that there IS a "right time" but just doing it.  I know not to compare as comparisons devalue, yet some things are obvious, what I learned is not to EXPECT the next dog to be like the one we had.  Instead love them for the qualities they bring to the table.  The things that are NOT replaced are a testament to the one we lost, for sure and nothing will ever fully still the grief that is within us but little by little that new little one can bring life and love to us again.

When we close ourselves off to the possibility, we deprive ourselves of some joy in living, and we deprive the dog of having a loving home.  So I took the risk, for there is always risk if you want love in your life...and I hit the lottery!  I miss everything about Arlie, I always will, but I also fully enjoy my little Kodie.

I redubbed this article Getting Another Pet as we NEVER "replace" one. Getting another Pet

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KayC,

I am not a never say never type of person really, but with all I have and gone through and what I am going through now I am not feeling it. I love "pets" and dogs especially because they are dogs and love you, cats tolerate you sometimes. I don't need the responsibility of a dog right now and it was different when "we" shared everything but I don't feel it is right at this time. I don't know the future if there is one for me so I can't speak in absolutes "maybe" is the best I could give. We had so many animals that have died in the last 35 years and most of them are buried throughout the "yard" to the point I don't even remember where most are. We had many at the same time and when one would die we were sad but the others helped us through the grief and also we had each other too. My loving wife was the one who "decided" on all of the animals we got after we were together, I had 2 dogs when we first got together and no cats. There was an advantage/disadvantage to her working for a Veterinary Clinic. I am not a hard-hearted person I am just "lost" right now and hurting and....I have said before and will continue to do so all advice is read and "filed" and possibly  acted on at a future point.

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20 hours ago, John9 said:

the others helped us through the grief

My point exactly.  My life would be so bleak w/o Kodie.  What you are feeling is kind of what I'm feeling about trying to get another cat, I've had one all my adult life, but Kitty passed 1/6/20 and I have not felt up to getting another yet, maybe someday is the best I can muster.  I just have so much on my plate.  So I get how you're feeling.  You have been through taking care of your wife, losing her, taking care of her mother, losing her, you're still settling the estate, it's a helluva lot on one person.  I hope for your sake that someday you'll feel in a better frame of mind and can have someone to share your life with, someone to give it meaning...by someone, I mean a furry someone, for I know you're not interested in anything beyond that.  :wub:

 

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OldTrojan

Hi Kay

Thanks for the thought.  It has been a very melancholy week.  I am still overwhelmed about Bear.  When I think that I might be doing better, something always seems to happen to the contrary.  Saturday when I was shopping I ran into an acquaintance who I had not seen in a while who has two beautiful spaniels. We usually talk about our loved dogs when we meet, and he asked me about Bear and I started crying again.  I had hoped that I was beyond crying like that.  I really miss the puppy that I was walking at lunchtime.  He was developing personality, we were bonding, and he was getting good at fetch.  Suddenly gone.  I used to bring four dog biscuits when I visited in the early morning: Emi, Marcus, puppy and the nice little female dog, but only two now.  I’m always sad when I see how poorly cared for many dogs are here.  This morning on my “Bear walk” one of his friends came up and wanted his head scratched.  He’s one of the good guys, but had huge blood-engorged ticks on him.  I took seven off of him, which his people should be doing.  It is common for me to do that with the friendly dogs, whose people are remiss.   Last week I took six big ones of off little Emi, so her people are not checking her and removing them.  I feel sorry for her, as her people keep her tied up very short so she can not move around much.  I’ve talked to them about it, but they rarely take my advice.  Also, I think about my several friends at home that I only recently discovered to have passed away.

You and John have lived this, and much worse with the loss of a spouse.   Your experience, advice, sympathy and hard-earned wisdom have been invaluable to me, and I can not thank you enough.  As bad as I still feel, it would be worse without the generous help that you, John and others have provided.  I know that there is no schedule for recovery, but tomorrow is another Wednesday, the 11th one, and I know that it will be too emotional.

Thanks again.

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I am so sorry, I know how hard this journey is, nothing prepares us for it, nor does anything seem to soften the blows.  If there were a way around it, I surely would have found it by now, but I've learned there's no way but straight through it, pain and all, it is in doing that we process our grief, but I've also learned it lessens some, although I can't say when because everyone's timeline and adjusting is as unique as the relationship they're grieving.  I only know we could not handle it if the rest of our lives remained at the same depth of pain, so I'm glad our bodies adjust some, even though grief continues.  It's weird to me that we get used to this, but we do, as unfathomable as that seemed in the earlier time.  It's consoling in a way, although some try to hang onto even their pain in an attempt to not lose any feeling for the other, as if that could happen!  It's not our grief that binds us to them, however, it's our love, and that continues still...and always will.

I'm sorry Wednesdays hit you...it was that way with Sundays for me for a long while, and of course Father's Days still hit as well as June 19th, I think it always will, I hate that it happened on a holiday that roves the date of the month because most years I get a double whammy with the anniversary of death.  With Arlie it was August 16th.  I have only to look out in the back yard as I'm hit with a reminder as they're both there, Arlie's body buried near the vine maple and George's ashes scattered in front of a giant DF, close by.  I have many pets buried in the area they lay, each with their own memorial stone.  I told my kids that is where I want my ashes scattered so if they ever sell this place, that will have to be in the contract.  I hope it doesn't give the new owners the heebie jeebies, we wouldn't haunt them or anything, I think of it more as a peaceful place to lie in rest.

You have a heart for dogs, so do I, I try to get mats out of their fur when they'll let me, it horrifies me how many owners "take care of their dogs."  

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OldTrojan, KayC,

I am Sadly triggered on too many days because of all of the "people" deaths and too many "animal" deaths. I had made a comment many years ago and it really hits and hurts now. I said that there is only 366 possible days in a year (counting leap year) and something "bad" has happened on everyone throughout history and also something "good". This doesn't make what has happened any easier and in my case my loving wife died on a Saturday, my friend died on a Wednesday and MIL died on a Sunday and my animal friends died on various days also so "everyday" seems to trigger me. I understand the various triggering events and the random ones also. Just when I think it is changing it is like running into a wall of emotions again. I don't like that people don't understand the commitment that they "made" when taking a pet into their lives and that is why right now I won't have more than my loving wife's cats. Whenever I look outside I know many of our animals are buried there and some have "markers" and some don't because there have been so many and we didn't create a ""cemetery at first just gave them a proper burial. Our son knows that I want him to keep things as they are when I die but beyond that it will be out of my control (as if I am in control of anything).

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