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AndreaJ

A Loss To Deep For Words

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Where do i start... Im new to the site I thought it may help with the overwhelming pain, loss and grief I am so heavely experiencing. My sweet little boy Max passed away he had been with me his whole entire life of 16 years and nearly half of mine. Max was and still will forever be my true friend a son with paws and a wagging tail. The pain from his loss runs deep deeper then any other loss I've endured. Max has been there no matter what, every move, every job I had, every heartbreak you name it and Max was there, unconditionally with nothing but love true and honest. He always wore his superman cape for he has saved me in more ways then I can count. Id call him my shadow because there id turn and there he'd be, or he'd be looking back just to get the ok from mom that things were ok. I always an animal lover of all kinds was not allowed as a child growing up to have pets, which was absolutely heartbreaking so Max came right when I was at the age where I could move out on my own, no longer having to abide by the no pet house rule. The last number of years have been very trying for me, my husband now ex husband and I were in a horrific car accident just a few months after we got married. My medical treatments were still under so much investigation and i finally was correclty diagnosed last year with a brain and spinal injury, one that would soon take my life if I did not undergo brain surgery. So last year I had brain and spinal surgery, and I'm still disabled and undergoing spinal treatments to date. My husband abruptly left early this year with our house all of our things and never did come back. Moving back home with my parents has been a trial in itself and hard. But through even the deepest of heart ache Max was there. I know I should be thankful that he lived such a long life which I know he lived every moment for me we were inseparable, but now the quietness rings so loud, where he'd be is empty. If I fall asleep I wake up desperate for him, I can ease myself to sleep if I become so exhausted of staying up I have to shut my eyes i place his baby blanket on my chest and wake up with his blanket clinched in my hands. Struggling with my injury he became even more significant, I can't find words to describe being disabled at my age. I began working at a young age and that lifestyle kept me moving, focused and gave me purpose. And not having the ability to do those things anymore is a mountain to climb everyday, but again Max was there. Max grew up with my cat Monkey they are brothers in every way. So close and Monkey is now mourning and it breaks my heart. I try to be there for him as best as I can knowing we both are grieving the loss of our sweet Max. I know the death of a pet is not always seen as a real loss to some, even with as loving as friends and family can be that idea has been presented, and it hurts so, more so because I feel nothing less then Max and monkey being my children. I feel though it is meant well I am expected to be feeling better after a few days from family, and those comments are what brought me to finally write tonight. Where Im expected to join in and laugh and watch a movie like nothing has happened, when all I want is Max. I felt like everything was suddenly passing by so quickly, like i am just on another level then my family even friends. At my age either your married, engaged, expecting or having children, and me I'm newly divorced live at home and lost my beloved boy. You come at a cross road where you loose contact with those you once new because, no matter what occurs people don't place their life on hold even if you can't keep up. The loss of Max has made my divorce to a man I thought i knew but didn't look like a vacation. And it truly was Max who kept me going no matter what. But the loss overall has been earth shattering I remember thinking as I was packing up every single belonging of ours after my husband left how could our life fit into a handful of boxes.. Every memory suddenly packed away. And when Max's ashes came home I thought the same thing.. How can all that love his precious life all our memories be in this little jar?.. It became more real once his ashes came home, it felt wrong like why is he in this little urn.. Thats it?... I looked inside and it looked like sands and shells you'd find under the bottom of your feet during a day at the beach.. I made the decsision to cremate because I wanted him with me no matter where I go, i hope to get a special necklace where he's with me always. I also find myself thinking of when he passed and I can't seem to stop. Max had been under care for heart failure but he also began to have trouble breathing which was also from the heart. The day he was rushed to the ER they did not think we was going to make it through. He was in an oxygen room for a good part of the day in ICU I stayed with him praying for a miracle. They were shocked he began to show signs of improvement so much that his breathing was normal and his heart rate came down immensely. He almost returned to his old self except he had trouble walking and standing, which they further came to the conclusion it could be brain damage. He came home the third day and was bright eyed hungry and ready to nuzzle with Monkey and greet everyone. I tucked him in as always and early morning he was stirring but I helped him become comfortable and he laid his head up on his pillow down by my feet I went to check him his breathing and I could not feel anything. I picked him up and he took one last breath, I tried Cpr but he was just gone.. After I held him in my arms for hours and he began to change and it really upset me I just felt sick over it. I am a person of faith and I don't doubt that God gave me the miracle I asked for. Max got to come home, he didn't suffer like other animals endure he passed peacefully right by me. He gave me a full day of plenty of tail wags, kisses and though he couldn't balance himself at first boy he took off wanting to walk on his own and by that evening he was sitting up without having to support his sides. I look back and of course think of the things I could have done differently, I wish he had been up by my face rather then by my feet, I question if he had tried getting up to me for that reason but i helped him back down in his spot. I was right there and I didn't know, you fell so powerless so helpless. I remember speaking with the Dr. that I didn't want to make a decision on letting him go if there was a chance he could pull through, mostly because I wouldn't be able to take it back and more so because I knew he'd choose to be with me. And to know most importantly he wasn't suffering lifted that weight off, knowing myself how suffering is pain wise and where your mind can go, I would not wish on anyone nor would ever want my precious boy to experience. Honestly Max was my reason to keep on especially when things became so hard suffering so, I knew if something happened to me he would be lost, devastated. I remember a time years ago I had taken a vacation from work and Max and Monkey stayed at my parents for the time I was gone, and I remember my mom calling me days into my vacation that Max would not leave the hallway to the front door. He just sat waiting and waiting for me to return, and did not want anyone to help him until I came back. Well we ended up putting him on the phone with me so he could be reassured that everything was ok, and before he knew it I would be back, where he'd run to me no matter the distance and Id scoop him up in my arms safe and sound. I guess that is what real true love looks like, Max and I against all else. I don't know what to do, I find myself pacing around the worst is the panic I feel. I question where he is if I will ever see him one day again. I am so afraid of that, not just never seeing him again but him looking for me as i am all he knows. I thought maybe i shouldn't have cremated him. At the moment Im trying to put together a small ceremony for him but I know that afterwards my family will move on from it but the pain and loss will be just as deep for me. How do I do this? How is it possible that a day will come where the pain is less. How do I continue my medical care without him there by my side. Ive not once stayed in bed and not gotten up to start some kind of day. Monkey has to be cared for I can't just stop. So I've tired to stay on schedule but starting the day and ending it is more painful then anything I could ever think. 

Andrea

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My dear, you are close to my daughter's age...her husband also abandoned her, for eight months, then he moved back under the guise of caring for her while she had flu but we soon learned that wasn't the real reason he came back, it was to try and steal her apartment.  If she got another one it'd cost another $500/month and she can barely afford this one.  Now that he has his name back on the lease she's stuck.  He is an alcoholic and emotionally and verbally abusive to her.  Her cats are everything to her, she has one named Max and one named Rick.  It is her cats that keep her going.

You are right that not everyone understands how close one can be to their furry family members.  I also have a dog and a cat and they are very much my family.  Losing one is one one of the hardest heartaches one can go through.  I'm so very sorry for the loss of your Max.  The oldest dog I ever had was 15.  

Reading about all you've been through, with spinal and brain injuries, that's hard enough in itself, but to have your husband leave you, the person who is supposed to be through thick and thin, that's huge.  And now your little boy is gone.  

I totally believe with all my heart that we will be together again, my husband who died 13 years ago, all of our furry children gone before us...how could it be heaven if not?  Too many people have had glimpses of the beyond and recalled similar experiences, of light and peace, it was euphoric, I experienced that twice in my life when my body died but was brought back to life within minutes.  It's a alluring feeling, the beyond, and I'm sure that's where your Max is, happy and not afraid, someday you will join him when it's your time but not before.

You worry that this intense pain will continue, it will for a time, but eventually our body adjusts to the changes it means for our lives and we learn to carry our grief inside of us, something we can coexist and function with.  Always you will miss him, but it will not be as intensely as it is today.

You say little Monkey is grieving, I want to leave you with this article... https://www.griefhealingblog.com/2018/06/pet-loss-supporting-your-grieving-pet.html

 

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Hi Kayc,

I appreciate your kind words and your comfort and guidance, Its so important I feel to have one another to reach out to. Its been just over a week sense Max passed on. I am so incredibly blessed to have been chosen to be his mom. It was always a dream of mine growing up to have a pet especially a dog. I wasn't allowed to have pets being young, my mother today says she regreted that choice for she thought my interest would be quickly passed on with caring for the pet. But all my life it became clearer and clearer the heart I was given for these amazing little one's. I forgave my mom and told her that I may not have had Max then if I had had another pet. But if it were up to me Id have a zoo! Monkey and my cat Luna keep me moving, no matter the pain or sadness I feel over me i keep on. I also have a little rabbit who is disabled and old in age, so his care is extensive daily. The physical pain from my injury is really what keeps me from many things, its always there no matter what and physical movement worsens things. Max at his age wasn't active like a young dog so he was constantly at my side and was so happy and content as long as  was in arms reach or at least his view. I know no extra day month or years would ever be enough time with him. I love my other little ones so so much, but the connection with Max was just so different. and my two cats and bunny are the sweetest things and they all get along just like family. Its hard to not think about the last of days with Max, but even in the darkness of those days that miracle of his fight and pulling through surprising the Dr and being well enough to come home was the most precious of gifts i will ever receive. I feel it was his way of saying that he is ok and well, whole, happy and loved me so.I choose cremation which really has been building in my mind not doing the right thing. Once he returned home it still just gives me an off feeling, but i keep him right by me sitting on my night stand, Ive never dealt with a death that was cremated. I thought it would be best so I could have him with me always. All theses emotions are even harder to handle being back at home with my parents, its not just my hurt they share it and are very fragile with things as well. After my husband just left i think what brought me to the obvious conclusion was who he actually really was. And the more time passed the more this person i thought I knew and who i choose to spend all the ears of my life with was a fraud. Im so sorry your daughter to is going through this, its such a cruel act to abandon and betray those they say they love, I even questioned myself if it had been my fault. And the more i uncovered about him made it just that easier to move forward with a divorce. I am so thankful thought the process was hard I was given the opportunity to say any final words to him, and that moment of releasing all the pain he caused me and my family was such a great way to move toward closure. It still hurts I think more so because you fell alone like your the only one while everyone else you know is married. It definitely causes feelings of great sadness and despair. I began to even feel used like who would want someone who has already been married. I am so glad she has her cats to lean on and bring her comfort even purpose to make it through. I so hope she can also find comfort in friends. Knowing first hand on this if she ever needs anyone to just listen or talk Id love to do that. Sometimes just being there for someone who is really struggling can make all the difference  in the world. It also sounds like you to have been through difficult times in your life and know firsthand what its like. Ive always beleived that our struggles and our road out of them to victory is somehow there to help someone else out.

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My husband was cremated and I didn't know what to do with the ashes but after a couple years of thinking about it, I scattered them in the back yard in front of our forest as he loved living here, loved this place more than any place he'd been.  So that's where I want my ashes to go when my time comes.  I have a memorial stone there.  If I ever have to move as I get older, the people might not want his memorial stone there  but maybe it could be affixed behind the tree instead of in front of so it wouldn't be in their view, some people are funny about things like that, but it'd have to be addressed as a condition of the sale because I definitely want laid to rest where he is, plus we have many pets buried there.  My dog is too big to bury, I'd have to have a backhoe, so he'll probably be the first of mine to get cremated.  The last dog I had this big we donated his body to science as it was January and the ground super hard.  Cremation wasn't thought of back then.  But for Arlie (dog) I would probably want him with me in the house for a time.  I understand what you mean about the connection, it's how I feel about Arlie...I've had 14 cats and nine dogs in my lifetime, but I'm closest to him, Fluffy too.  So hard losing one!

Thank you for your kind words towards my daughter, from a mom's standpoint, it's very hard!  We love our kids more than life itself and it's so hard to see their pain, esp. since I know what it feels like.

I hope your physical pain lessens with time and you regain more and more function.  I had a sister that was quadriplegic from a brain injury in a horrible car accident that killed her 3 year old.  She lived 50 years in a wheelchair before she passed, was 25 when the accident happened.  My other sister also sustained brain damage that controls her equilibrium so now that she is in her 70s she's subject to frequent falls and I'm afraid that will be her demise, I almost lost her this year.

I don't think someone would discount you because you'd been married, some might appreciate that after having been through so much, it's brought you maturity and appreciation for what is good in life.  My daughter has a few very close friends who have really been there for her and I think they'd like to wring his neck but her putting this all behind her is something only she can do, or we'd all already have had it done!

I'm glad you have other little furry ones to love on, I know what you mean, I've loved all my cats but there's something special about a loving dog!

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I think your right that time really seems to help our thoughts especially where your husband ashes were placed. It sounds like he had such a special place there peaceful and serene. You are so strong to have gone through so much, especially when loved ones are sick and hurting. Its still so unreal how one moment can change life forever. My heart goes out to those who are in pain especially, theres something so different when one struggles from an injury and pain. I hate to say that even the strongest of minds have seasons of such sadness you don't know how to make it another day. Thats why I think animals have such a strong connection with us, they fill a void that noone else can, making the relationship that much stronger. It was incredibly brave of you to donate your pet one it passed, but I know in doing so that may have saved another life or uncovered a cure for an illness. The loss of Max has placed the loss of my marriage in the back seat, though I've had months of mourning and tears to shed i made the decision to follow through with the divorce knowing full heartedly that he was not coming back and made such a heartless and cowardly decision. I read that God sometimes takes those out of our life for greater reasons then we can understand. its taken a large leap of faith and trust to move forward. I also think Max held on as he always has brave and full of love because he knew how devistated I would be when my husband left to never see him again. He's always been my protector the first little guy in my life that soared above anyone else. I really appreciate the link regarding the loss that a pet feels because Monkey and I both lost such a beloved boy. Though its hard to watch him mourn it also shows the love we have for Max, and how greatly he touched us all. It also breaks the cycle of cats and dogs can't be friends. As I over the years have seen both Max and Monkey connect in such a lovingly way that was nothing less then being brothers. Monkeys always been the gentle giant who takes care and watches over us. He knows how to indulge in life and teaches his family how to. I have been listening to podcasts on pet loss and it seems to soothe Monkey with just the sound as my fur kids have always been around music or the sound of the TV. Ive placed my strength in caring for Monkey and giving him the love and reassurance he needs. I know the holiday will be especially hard with it being the first without my precious Max. I wish i could somehow go back to do things differently to see him again. That desperation still boils over and its such a deep pain that never seems like it will lessen. Its overwhelming when theres been so much loss and grief, you don't know how to face it all as its swallows you whole. My age is hard to and life for me has been so different from past friendships that you loose those friends because they move on with their life no matter the hurt that you feel. I hope I can continue Max legacy, that i can find healing that the pain will subside and I can venture out to connect with others again. Im so glad your daughter has friends she can lean on , its so important especially with what she is going through. My mother can't stand to even talk about my husband and what he's done. My parents grief took front row and they were not able to be there as I wish they could be. The more Id try to lean and talk with them the more the weight of their feelings they'd place on me so I stopped saying much of anything knowing I could not carry their burden as well as my own. I pray that all of that to will come to pass, I had closure at least where everything I felt I was able to write before the divorce to him and having that weight off really helped. I do pray your daughter will have that too, we all deserve a chance to be happy. and one of the hardest things is when we choose to walk away. I will say if my husband then didn't make that decision I don't think I ever could have left on my own. Though we are not always in the best place it harder to walk away toward the unknown. But no man that leaves his wife and hurts her deserves to be a husband. Sometimes when we hold onto what we need to let go of we miss the right one we miss out on the gift waiting around the corner.

Andrea

 

 

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The donated dog was a Golden Retriever name Teddy, one day before his 10th birthday.  He had cancer that had gotten to his brain.  I wish we could have buried his body in the back yard like all of our other animals, but it was a very cold January and the ground was frozen like marble.  He was such a sweet gentle boy.

You are right about our connection with animals.  Aside from my late husband, my closest connections have been my furry animals.  

14 hours ago, AndreaJ said:

Sometimes when we hold onto what we need to let go of we miss the right one we miss out on the gift waiting around the corner.

Oh so true!

I just got a message from my daughter, I'll see her at Thanksgiving at my son's house.  It's been four months since I've seen her.  She's been going through this hell for over 1 1/2 years...it's been probably five years since things have been good between her and her husband.  I wish peace for her.  For you too.

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I think its amazing that we can experience such a deep connection with animals. Its a connection that no other relationship can compare to. The grief of loss i can explain as waves they come and go some are larger then others. I definitely have felt the black cloud above and my heart so heavy. I miss ending my day with Max and begining the day with Max. Monkey is still struggling but I feel we hold each other up. I know the holidays as wonderful as they can be they can also be very hard on others. I will be honest, I am not looking forward this year, I know for now i have to be ok with myself to not be ok. Though it always seems that everyone around you is on a total different level. Im so glad you will be able to see your daughter! What a blessing! I understand so very much, please let her know I will be thinking and praying for her and of course for you!

Andrea

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2 hours ago, AndreaJ said:

I know for now i have to be ok with myself to not be ok.

Spot on!  It's good to accept where we are at and be okay with that.  Yes I look very much forward to being with my daughter, I just want to give her one big long hug!

I'm so sorry you are hurting, I wish there was a way to stop it but alas there's no way but straight through it...it takes going through the pain to get through it.

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Yes you are right there is no quick fix it for grief. Today has been especially hard as if I lost Max all over again. Im just so heavy with emotions. Its a comfort too to see him at the foot of the bed, to lay by me when its just been a hard day or just because. My family despite all the friends I use to have are all i have, but I know they can't understand the magnitude of the pain I feel. Thanksgiving being a day away everyone seems to be focused on, knowing that Max won't be here is devastating. All the firsts without him are ahead and I just can't bare it. I read an article the other day about pets and if they do make it to heaven. I am a women of faith and to read that they do not I know isn't true, but it still stuck with me questioning it. I look for any way to rest my heart in knowing that Max is safe and happy, and that the day will come that I will be with him again. Im so glad you will get to see your daughter I hope you all can have wonderful Thanksgiving. I know even though there is so much pain and sadness, theres still much to be thankful for.

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1 hour ago, AndreaJ said:

I read an article the other day about pets and if they do make it to heaven. I am a women of faith and to read that they do not I know isn't true, but it still stuck with me questioning it. I look for any way to rest my heart in knowing that Max is safe and happy, and that the day will come that I will be with him again.

Andrea, my dear, I invite you to read this: Do Pets Go to Heaven?

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Andrea,

I am a Christian too and I totally believe animals go to heaven!  The Bible makes references to animals in it (the lion shall lay down with the lamb)...why would God put some random lion and lamb there and not my Skye or Fluffy or Lucky?  Why would He create such wonderful beings just to let them be "nothing", that doesn't make any sense to me!  I believe we'll be with those we love again, and our animals top the list!

My mom used to be one of those naysayers, but I invite you to think about it, really, the Bible tells us a lot, but there's a lot it doesn't extrapolate on too...I've learned in those areas that I don't have full details on to trust God and His judgment, and quite honestly, it only makes sense to me that our animals are there waiting for us.

 

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Thank you so much! Marty and Kayc it really put my heart at ease. I know when I read the print that they do not make it to heaven like we do I thought to myself No God is full of grace and loves us more then we could ever imagine just as he loves all his creation. The gift of an animal is something that has always been so incredibly precious. Its funny looking back when I was young, I was the same way always rescuing some animal lol! But my parents never allowed me to have a pet thinking it was just a faze Id quickly grow out of, but when I was the age to finally move out on my own Max my precious boy was the first then Monkey my very sweet orange tabby cat. I ended up with two other kitties, three ferrets,a bunny who was disabled, a hedge hog and a duck of all things! I think having that love that runs so very deep within is just who I am and honestly who God created me to be. I always thought all that love they give an abundance of pure love how can they not be waiting at Heaven's Gates. Though i can't imagine them being anymore perfect then they already are. I am so grateful in so many ways. It was a tough day, all the firsts now without Max but i am so thankful and grateful to. I hope all of you have had a Happy Thanksgiving!!!

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1 hour ago, AndreaJ said:

I always thought all that love they give an abundance of pure love how can they not be waiting at Heaven's Gates. 

I've always thought that way too, Andrea. I think our animals are angels in suits of fur (or fins or feathers).  And as Will Rogers said, if there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went. ♥️

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Andrea,

I feel as you do, don't spend another minute worry about whether they'll be there...those of us who know and love the animals God created and entrusted in His care realize the certainty of their being there.  ;) 

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