Still

I wrote this a few weeks ago and thought it posted but I suppose it didn’t…no reason to throw it away as it pertains. But there is Change. That is a post for another day. For now…we live, we love, we move on.

I’ve tried very hard these last few weeks to get beyond my grief and move forward as if life was…normal. A new normal but…I find myself not doing very well at it. I get up, drink coffee, makes breakfasts, set down dinner…but nothing else is getting done. Chores languish as I move in a scattered way through the house, vacuuming a bit, adjusting this or that…but with no sense of completion, little desire for activity.

I cannot look at the photos on my phone lest I see one of Her. I can hardly look at the double dog food bowl stand without weeping. If I even try to think of her comedic self acute pain strikes my throat as I try to not let it all out…all the terrible guilt I feel for missing her sickness – for not seeing how unwell she was until it was too late. I comfort myself with the thought that the heavy antibiotics masked all – that even the vet didn’t know. But I knew – I knew she was not right.

And I think of how I forced her dying self to haul her body up the ramp and into the truck to get to the vet – of how she lay dying as we tried to rush her…all in vain. She was so damn strong…she did what I demanded of her just because I was asking her to do it, not understanding why…

I think of how strong I had to be as the decisions were made – the cold, factual calculations and even voice as I held all the pieces of my broken soul together to get through this for her and him…of that final shudder and gasp she gave when she passed over. Did she see Jonesy and Smokey? Did she find a place of comfort or was it just a curtain closed? I weep alone a lot…I glance at the photo as I scan through my phone or files. Just a glance and I am wrecked. But still…still trying to do it all and not let the pieces fly apart.

I know it will pass. It is the one thing I hold to – that I know in time the pain will be distant and I can look again at her silly self in the video, on her back and kicking her legs in the air like some wild miniature pony. Listen to her talking in her woo loo loo hooting with him. Maybe even one day to smell the wee bag of fur that I kept.

Then I think of dear Ranger who can smell things so much better than I – of how every bed, carpet, floor has her smell…he must still be surrounded by her and not understanding where she went. I have washed the blankets and coverings to try to remove that from his senses. But today he sat at the pool just where she used to. He didn’t get in it – he just sat there and looked at me. At mealtime he will pause as he always did to wait for her to come eat then resigns himself to her absence and continues. When we walk he still pauses as if to see if she will come out from hiding somewhere in the house to join us. All these small things I know – these are my daily burdens that he does not see or know.

Recently we went to the rose garden and walked for hours, just enjoying each other and the beauty there. At the little gnome garden under the cypress trees he said we should make a similar gathering under her tree and in that simple statement was so much of our mutual grief that we held each other and cried as the voices of strangers drifted on the wind. She will be interred at the spot she chose the day she died. She scratched at it hard, looking up at me, and I knew even as I knew she was dying – here, she was saying. Here. 20171001_110924We will place the stone, a kind gift, and weep for now…but this place will be planted with all manner of flowers for beauty all year round. Then we can sit and look upon it and, someday, not weep with the loss but laugh with the memories. I pray it is soon.

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