We’re having a snow storm in seattle right now. As I watch the snow fall and collect on the ground, it reminded me of this picture from Christmas 2017 when we got 3″ of snow. Our little family walked to the Westcrest Park in West Seattle to play in the snow. It’s a memory I reflect on often, and now that it’s snowing here, I am thinking about how I would love to play in the snow with Max and Gus tomorrow.
I’m really missing my sidekick today. After I started working from home two years ago, Max was *always* by my side. I’m sure that nobody wants to hear about this anymore but I know I want to keep talking him.
It’s almost been two weeks and I honestly can’t believe he’s gone? I keep thinking he’s just at the doggy hotel or that he’ll be back soon… but then I look over and his bed isn’t there and he isn’t either. I’ve been having a hard time being home alone. The house is so quiet without him—there’s no snorts or sniffles or farts or gags.
I know this sounds kind of dramatic, but I feel like a part of me is gone. It’s hard to feel okay when your world has stopped. I know with time it’ll feel better, at least that’s what everyone keeps telling me.
The week before he died was the worst week—he would collapse and seize multiple times a day. I’d hold his little head and rub his belly, telling him it would be okay. though he died peacefully by the ocean, it was still traumatic for me, so it’s no surprise that some of my PTSD symptoms have been flaring. I keep having nightmares replaying those seizures and the day of his death.
Max had an incredible life, but that doesn’t take away the loss I feel.
And that’s okay. I am allowing myself to grieve. I am giving myself patience. Or at least that’s what I’m telling myself–and what I’m trying to do.
Dogs provide us with so much unconditional love. In the depths of my own depression, Max’s love gave me hope, reminded me what love felt like, and a reason to get myself out of the house. and now he’s gone.
for most people, the loss of a dog is, in almost every way, comparable to the loss of a human loved one. I’m not alone in feeling like this. I’ve had friends confide to me that they grieved more over the loss of a dog than over the loss of friends or relatives.
Unfortunately, there’s nothing in our cultural playbook for the loss of a pet. There’s no after-death planning, no grief rituals, no obituary, no memorial service to help us get through the loss of a pet. Because there’s no bereavement for pets, it can make us feel embarrassed to show too much grief over our dead furbabies.
But dammit, isn’t it so worth it for all of those year of love and cuddles?
In the comments, tell me about your furbabies that have died. What breed were they? What were they like? What’s a memory you still remember from a pet that left this side of paradise?
I’ll leave you with one of mine: