Recently I experienced a great loss. Yesterday afternoon my dog (seen in the picture above) Henry Lee passed away. He was a cuddly little guy and is greatly missed. The last twenty-four hours have been hard on my home, especially on my other pug Izzy. Today, I’m going to share with you some things I am doing to cope with the loss of my sweet little old man.
5. It’s Okay To Cry
Sadness is a major factor in the grieving process. When I first heard the news of my Henry Lee I cried off and on all day. Everything reminded me of him. This is all normal when you lose a loved one. We will all handle death differently, so if this isn’t your first reaction that’s okay too. At some point, you’ll cry. This doesn’t make you weak or over-reactive it makes you human. Crying is your body’s response to release emotions you are holding inside.
4. Give Yourself Some Personal Space
During the grieving process, you’ll want to be alone. Being alone allows you some time to focus on those who have past. Our loved ones play such an important role in our lives that when they are gone we don’t know what to do. Henry was a diabetic, so he was on a strict diet plan, and need medication twice a day at 2:30. So, it felt strange at 2:30 AM when I didn’t get up to feed him. By giving yourself personal space it’ll allow you some time to collect your life and figure out how to move on without them. But, don’t give yourself too much or you’ll sink into a depression.
3. Avoid Unhealthy Coping Mechanism
When I was a teenager my grandfather passed away. We were very close and he played a major part in my youth. I took his loss very hard. I was told that drinking can ease your pain, so I was trying to convince my older friend to buy me alcohol. He refused and said, “You’ll never find happiness in the bottom of a whiskey bottle, just more emptiness.” For some reason, those words stuck with me while I grew up. He is right though. All that does is lead you down the path of sadness, loneliness, and possibly early death, restarting the cycle over again with another loved one. Don’t start the cycle of self-destruction, your loved one wouldn’t want that for you.
2. Talk It Out
You are not alone in this. Everyone on this planet will at some point grieve for a loved one, so there is a whole lot of people who kinda understand what you are going through. Confine your feelings with a close friend. Check on your grieving friend often, and bring them lunch. The first to go while grieving is your appetite. The person grieving would appreciate it also, if they don’t express. They are sad, hurting, and feel overwhelmingly alone. Listen to them and give them plenty of emotional support while we go through this trying time.
1. Remembering Them
Even though things look terrible now, eventually life will return to normal. That doesn’t mean you should forget your loved one. They were still apart of your life and should be remembered often. It’s the little things that help us cope with them. I plan on turning Henry’s food bowl into a little memorial piece for the counter island in the kitchen. Why? Because he was a great lover of food. What he loved more then life was eating. Doing something you feel that would make that person happy will in return make you happy.
This article was written in memory of Henry Lee Crabtree. Who passed away on 4/30/2020 due to complications from a bladder infection. He was a little over 16 years old when he crossed the rainbow bridge. RIP my little old man.