Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thankful Weekend.

Regardless of having these feelings written in this post, I am having an amazing Thanksgiving weekend, filling it with family, friends, food, and a little shopping.

Something magical always comes out of the holidays and even though this Thanksgiving did not live up to my fantasy world expectations, I am still able to see the forest through the trees ( or is it trees through the forest? That always confuses me)...

I am thankful for toddler tantrums...because that means I have a healthy, normal child and was able to conceive.
I am thankful for arguments with my husband...because that means that I have a real relationship that takes work.
I am thankful for annoying family members...because that means I am surrounded by family, the most important thing in life.
I am thankful for gaining a pound or two...because that means I have plenty to eat.
I am thankful for missing Bear dog...because that means I had an amazing pet in my life that made quite an impact on me.
I am thankful for the frustrations of owning a brand new house...because that means we have an incredible roof over our heads.
I am thankful for frustrating day care searches....because that means that I have an amazing job to provide for my family.

Life is full of lessons, as cliche as that might sound, and being able to embrace these lessons is really an important part of everyone's journey. These past couple of months have been more difficult than most, in my reality, but some of the most amazing lessons are definitely emerging from them as well.

Now, I'm off to the store to get ready to watch Florida State kick ass against the Gators! I am SO thankful for college football.

Also, Happy 39th Anniversary to THE most amazing couple parents! You are truly inspirational. We love you lots.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder.

I did not expect all of these same emotions that I have felt from losing a human to emerge from the loss of a dog. Actually, some of these feelings are worse than how I've felt when grieving a human in the past. I am shocked to say that out loud, or to even have that thought at all.

Some might speculate that perhaps I haven't ever lost a human that I was deeply connected with, in order to say something like that, but the truth is, I have. I have lost two grandparents that I was close with, one when I was 21 and one when I was 26, a high school friend who died in a tragic accidental shooting when I was 23, and a cousin when I was 15.

I had very close relationships with all of them, in one capacity or another, but I believe what is different with Bear is that he was literally by my side for 12 solid years. There is now a huge void in the house. An eerie still or calm, maybe. There is an obvious absence of a life. I'm honestly struggling being home without him. I even wondered if my feelings were abnormal. I read this article that validated my feelings a bit, but because I'm so intensely analytical I had to dig deeper and figure out why mourning Bear has been so difficult.

This past week has been a time of reflection for me and a time to really grasp the chapter in my life that just ended. Bear began my adult life with me. Bringing him home at age 22, I was merely in the infant stage of adulthood. I had just graduated college 8 months prior to Bear. It was truly a lifetime ago.

I won't rehash where Bear and I came from and what we endured together. I wrote this post a little over a year ago to discuss those feelings, but what I didn't truly realize when Bear was alive were all of the roles that he played in my life during his 12 years.

He provided me with safety, friendship, and constant companionship.

He was my eyes and ears of every house I ever lived in during my adult life. From the innocent street of south Venice, to the questionable studio in Nokomis, to the odd townhouse in Orlando, to our current gated community...he was my/our security system. He made me feel safe in nine different houses, adapting to each with ease, just as long as he had the safety of his family.

He was my most loyal friend. Ever.  I have discussed on a couple of occasions on this blog about how I have been disappointed by some of the girlfriends in my life. It's no secret that good friends are hard to come by. Bear, as every good dog does, listened to me without judgment. He let me cry on him. He gave me his paw when I needed it. He was always at my feet through thick and thin. His loyalty was unprecedented.

He went with the flow of every event of this family. Whether we were living in 300 square feet or 2000, he was just happy and content to be with me. When Lily was born, he dutifully took a step back in pecking order of the pack and willingly accepted it. He was a true companion.

As I write this, these roles of his sound so simple in text but they truly filled up so much of my life, and now they are empty. It's a profound loss.

I still feel his presence at times. I turn the corner to my office and expect to see him there. I "see" him out of me peripheral everyday. I go to call for him at night, after I put Lily to bed (which has proven to be the most difficult time of the day), to come and lay by me. I want to give him his signature beckon of "pssssttt, psssssttttt" every time I drop food on the ground so he can come and clean up after me. I want to say to Lily, "Let's go home and see Bear dog", every time we're out somewhere and about to head home, just like I always have. I will hear a noise in the house and assume it's his nails rubbing the tile.

I could go on and on. If you are an animal lover and have gone through this, I know you understand all of the above.

Lily is what has been my only saving grace this week. She is an amazing source of laughter and happiness, of course. I wrote this post on her reaction to this loss, or lack there of, but I truly thank God that she is here. These wounds would run so much deeper if she wasn't.


So, big Bear's much too simple to say that I miss you. You were an integral part of this family. You were a staple in my life for so long.... this will be quite an adjustment. I am just so thankful that you are pain free now. I know you are enjoying popcorn and frisbees every single day. I know your sight is restored along with your muscles in your spine, hips and shoulders. I know your teeth are shiny, white, and healthy. I know you're standing proud and noble, as always, with a beautiful, glistening coat.

Thank you for all that you represented to me, Bear. I will forever be grateful for what you provided for me. Rest well and know that we will never find another you.
Love, your Mama.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Heavy Heart.

This is all I can muster up for now, a copy and paste of a poem I found:

If it should be that I grow frail and weak,
And pain should keep me from my sleep,
Then will you do what must be done,
For this, the last battle, can't be won.

You will be sad I understand,
But don't let grief then stay your hand,
For on this day, more than the rest,
Your love and friendship must stand the test.

We have had so many happy years,
You wouldn't want me to suffer so.
When the time comes, please, let me go.

Take me to where to my needs they'll tend,
Only, stay with me till the end

And hold me firm and speak to me,
Until my eyes no longer see.
I know in time you will agree,
It is a kindness you do to me.

Although my tail its last has waved,
From pain and suffering I have been saved.

Don't grieve that it must be you,
Who has to decide this thing to do;
We've been so close,we two, these years,
Don't let your heart hold any tears.

Author Unknown 

 Love you forever, Bear. Thank you for your companionship and loyalty for the past 12 years.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Recent Happenings and Thoughts

  • I am shocked that I only managed to post twice in the month of October. I don't know where my writing mojo has gone.
  • I am so tired. Having a toddler, running a sales force and a household has been taking it's toll on me lately. I need to find a balance. Maybe that's where my writing mojo has gone?
  • Halloween was so much fun. Having a child makes every holiday exciting. Lily still didn't understand trick-or-treating, or Halloween in general, but it was fun to dress up and teach her all about it.
  • Read more about Lily happenings soon as I get around to posting :)
  • I cannot believe the retail Christmas commercials that started November 1st. Too.Soon.
  • We met a lot of our neighbors on Halloween and I love this young community. It's almost like we moved out of Florida with all of these younger people around us.
  • Although I've been exercising for at least 30 minutes a day, walking or biking, I miss my yoga class desperately. It might be time to join the Y soon.
  • Our house doesn't look a whole lot different from when we moved in. I wish I was more creative with decorating.
  • I love fall but we REALLY need some fall weather here. 90 degrees isn't cutting it.
  • Adding to my car addiction, I replaced my Honda CRV with a Honda Pilot. I am in sweet baby love with it.

That's all for now.  I promise I will write about something a bit more riveting soon!