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My husband passed away Father's Day, June 19, 2005. So it was just a week ago that marked the anniversary of his death. And then just two days later, our 19 year old cat, also named George, (I had the cat before meeting my George) had to be put to sleep. I had been doctoring him for what I'd thought was just an abscess...I had taken him to an animal hospital five weeks ago and they'd given me a course of treatment and antibiotics, but after two courses of medicine and all of the doctoring to no avail, I felt we were still losing ground and I took him to my local vet to see if he could be treated or needed put to sleep, for he seemed to be suffering too much in my estimation. What I learned is that he has a tumor from his forehead into the roof of his mouth and the infection just accompanies such tumors and yes, I really was fighting a losing battle. So I had him put to sleep. Nothing could have prepared me for this. I knew the cat was old, that he'd lived his life. I even believe (differently than most people) that our pets go to heaven...I've never seen anything to the contrary scripturally, only people's surmising, and I figure as long as there's surmising I can do some of my own, but it doesn't make sense to me that God would waste perfectly good animals when He's putting animals into heaven anyway, so I choose to think I'll see my George cat again. As he drifted away in my arms I told him he's going to a place where there'll be chopped bacon and that (my) George will be there waiting for him and I'll come join him and I love him. He went peacefully and didn't seem to even feel the shot, it was over so quickly...for him. For me, the pain of missing him began...looking out my patio door at his empty dog house (he didn't want his cat house, he took over the dog house). Seeing the porch swing empty and still when I come home (I used to always see him hop down from it to come greet me). Fixing dinner and no George cat to give scraps to. No George to give milk to. No George meowing at me whenever I step outside. It feels so empty and gone.
Then Saturday morning, just three days later, I get a phone call...a friend of mine passed away, someone I worked with for nine years. It was unexpected and he was younger than me. I go outside and hear kids playing, cars going by, life going on, and I realized the cycle of life continues, even as one's world is turned upside down, even as we miss our loved ones, even as we deal continually with death issues. It feels weird...

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I feel as you do KayC....God has our pets in heaven. Gene lost his buddy, Bart, 3 weeks before he passed away. I had always feared if our little dog died then Gene would not survive his battle. I bought him another the year before for Valentines...something new for Gene to focus on besides his illnesses and because something inside of me told me that Gene would loose his dog. Gene told me to keep her, that I would need her and he was right. I often think that heaven has all the tennis balls Gene and Bart could ever want. And I spoil this little dog left behind with me just as Gene would have spoiled her. Now I only put one bowl out in the mornings instead of two. I can still look out my window and see Gene throwing balls to his dog. And I watch the cycle of life continuing around me but it has little meaning for me anymore. There are no longer any celebrations...just the waiting.

Kayc, I'm so sorry for the loss of your friend and your pet. It seems life just keeps throwing daggers into our hearts. What is left is memories.....Death can not take the good memories from us left behind. It can not take the love we carry.

Thank you for being such a good friend to all of us KayC.

Always Gene!


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i am very sorry for the loss of your friend and ur pet, kayc.

life is really unexpected. we never know what's gonna happen next. it really feels weird..when u lose someone very close to u and u look at what is happening around u, and sees that everything still goes on. and u begin to ask urself, why am i just the only one getting too much affected here?

u never failed to help and reach out to us kayc, even when u are going through a difficult time now. and again, thank u for all those advices.

but as u said, the cycle of life still continues..we just have to be strong.

u have my prayers, kayc.

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Evelyn and Ann,

Thank you, both of you. We have learned a lot and I know we need to look at not what we lost but what we have, even while we remember and memorialize those we have lost and all that goes with it, for we never forget.

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Our pets are an extension of us and we love them like part of the family.

Thru the years Charlie and I had many dogs, cats, & birds. When they passed we were so sad. Our dog the one Charlie loved so much and (Max the dog) loved him too passed away this past March. He really was never the same after Charlie died, he was always looking out the window wondering when his master would come home. We had Max for 16 years and found him dead one morning. I know he is again at Charlie's side.

I am so sorry that you had to suffer that pain too and then to lose a close friend, life sometimes sure throws some curves at us.


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Thank you, I know there are a lot of pet lovers here. It is a comfort to know, though, that George will be there to greet George cat.

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Guest PattiZ54

KayC - We had to put our beloved canine, Kelty, to sleep(after discovering she had tumors, too)13 months before I lost my husband. She was 14 and we had had her all those years - Charlie and I never had any children (I have a daughter from a previous marriage)so she was our baby. It crushed us; we cried for days. Then when I lost my love, I knew the two of them were back together - they met up at Rainbow Bridge.(www.rainbowsbridge.com)

I know how lonely the house seems - there was 3, now it's just me....

George sounds like a wonderful man - you don't find many people that just cherish you. I understand how much you miss him!! We ALL do!

It definately feels weird watching the world go on and thinking about all the things that our loved ones are not here for. That makes me cry.

Now that I have put Charlies ashes where he wanted, I just picture the waterfall that he is near and what a beautiful lake that is. I know he's happy just being there; with his dad and Kelty. That's how I'm going to have to get through until he and I meet up again....and I know we will.

I'm glad I have all of you to talk to and to help me through this. My heart is with ALL of you!


(Charlie 6/10/58-11/16/2004; I love & miss you, Dear!)

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KayC and Pattiz54 and Ustwo and Charlie,

I just wanted to write to you all and let you know that I have experienced this same double loss – the loss of not only our dear partners but also one of these small four legged creatures full of unconditional love.

Jack was ill for 10 months – and had lost his sight 3 weeks into his illness in October 2004. Then on December 6th 2004 I had to make the heart wrenching decision – on my own – to put our dear companion – Dusky – to sleep. We had him for over 15 years. After being with Dusky as he died – I then had to go to the Hospital where Jack was in the ICU unit and tell him that Dusky had died. As I walked into the room I grabbed Jacks hand and said to him – “How are you today Jack?” He immediately said to me – “What’s wrong – your hands are so cold?”I began to cry as I told him that Dusky had died and then – we cried together. I still remember feeling and expressing to others - at the time - that I was losing everything in life that I loved – and just 8 months later Jack was gone.

I feel each of your pain – I understand how crushing these double deaths have affected our lives. I cry each day for my two dear friends. I know they are together – with George and George, Charlie and Kelty, Gene and Bart, Charlie and Max. I still have Dusky’s feeding mat in the Kitchen – just where it always was.

Let me share with you a passage from the book "The Grieving Heart “ by Thomas Attig. Although the words were written to guide us through the loss of out partners – I feel they are just as applicable to the loss of our “little friends and companions” who’s loss we feel as deeply. These words provide guidance to our overall struggle of loss. Here are the passages:

“We feel as if our everyday lives have been undone, shattered. We are at a loss as to how to reconnect with the things and places and the fellow survivors our loved ones left behind. And how to reweave familiar threads of caring about these remnants of our lives with the deceased into the patterns of life and daily routines we must now reshape. We fear that we cannot be ourselves in a world transformed by our loss, that immersing ourselves in life and caring again in familiar ways will no longer bring peace and contentment. How are we to feel that we belong again in our life’s surroundings? What is the point of caring about others if it only brings pain? Can we return to everyday life in ways that reflect how deeply those who have died have touched us and shaped our soul?”

“This anguish is soul pain. It is unlike physical pain that comes with injury or illness. It resonates deeply within us and reflects some of our profoundest fears. It strikes and lingers in that part of our hearts in which we seek the grounding, connection, and love that make everyday life worthwhile. Where we establish and maintain our integrity. And where we know the heartbreak of deprivation that loss brings. Soul pain is some of the worst pain of missing those we love.”

“Soul work is the part of grieving we do as we learn to carry this soul pain. We struggle to find our way back home in a world pervaded by the absence of those we love, and we often draw on their deepest influences as we struggle. But we can mitigate this pain when we find enduring connections with them in our roots, within familiar surroundings, and in the soulful aspects of our own character.”

“Ironically, the things, places, people, experiences and activities that arouse our deepest soul pain may be precisely the ones that hold memories. Legacies and connections that can still nourish and sustain us. We may be tempted to flee from what we need the most, those things that, if we can find our ways back to feeling at home with them, have the most to offer us. Tolerating the soul pain may be the price of replenishing our starving soul.”

“We may sometimes conclude, sadly and after considerable effort, that leaving our home, avoiding a particular place, giving away or discarding a cherished possession, limiting contact with someone who survives with us, abstaining from an experience, or refraining from an activity is best. It may become clear that our pain will foreseeably overwhelm the memories in those parts of our world. They seem spoiled by our loss. Letting go in these ways concedes that we have lost more than the one who has died. But it can also be part of an honest and appropriate response for us to a world transformed by our loss and the soul pain it arouses. When we choose to do such things, we do not ultimately avoid soul pain. In effect, we choose which soul pain we are best able to carry and how.”

“ We deal with soul pain on our own terms and in our own ways. We cannot make it go away. But through and in spite of it, we can begin to see what remains in our daily lives and life circumstances that can nourish our souls. And we can begin to sense the soulful presence of those who have died.”

I hope in some way these passages help us all - and remember - I am with each of you – each day – as we travel this path. And so is - George and George, Charlie and Kelty, Gene and Bart, Charlie and Max, Jack and Dusky.

Love to you all.

John – Dusky is my handle on here

Love you Jack – and Dusky

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John, Thank you for those quotes, they aptly put into words what I know to be true. Sometimes I find myself avoiding (or trying to) the pain but it's still there and it's true that we sometimes choose what we can carry. But it has a way of seeping through all the same when you least expect it...grief will find us even though we might try to hide from it. The pain is ever with me. I'm not sure that it helped, crossing this one year mark...it's true I don't have to face any more firsts, yet the pain has not dulled or gone away no matter what I've done to cope with it...I have had to, quite simply, learn to live with it. I thought if I could somehow get through the first year...but I've found that is not so. It is mine until I am reunited with my George again and there is no comfort for this loss but seeing that look in his eyes and his arms around me once again.

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