ve a heavy heart today and am struggling with grief for the last few days.
On April 6, four days ago I posted pictures of my two birthday girls, Koko & Isis Summerjo on Facebook and wrote about how my family is going to celebrate their birthdays on Isis’ birthday next week. My furbabies. Both of them have birthdays in April. Isis’ birthday is April 14th and she will be six years old. Koko’s birthday in is April but we don’t know exactly which day. My aunt gave her to us many years ago and mentioned that her birthday is in April.
Koko was fourteen years old this month and we had her for twelve years. On April 7th, 2013, the day after I posted the picture of Koko and wrote about celebrating her birthday very soon, she died. It hurts me to write those words. She wasn’t suffering and she was always very loved. She was old for a dog but that does not in any way ease my grief or sense of loss.
I love animals and to me they are not “just animals”. Koko wasn’t “just a dog.”. She was my friend & my family and a big part of me just like my other three dogs, Oscar, Isis Summerjo, and Boobie are. I have lost other pets to different things and it is always very sad.
For the last couple of weeks Koko began to change in some ways. She became slower and her breathing changed. She wasn’t sick though and she still would eat & drink and was still happy. But I was able to sense changes in her that were not good.
These changes were devastating to me because even though they were not seriously dramatic, I knew they were inductions that Koko would probably not be around much longer.
This hurt me desperately.
I never wanted to be prepared for that loss. Koko slept in bed with me all snuggled up in the blankets next to me or laying on my chest all night many nights.
She always kept her little tongue out. She was so adorable and beautiful.
The night before Koko took her last breath when I walked in my house three of my dogs jumped up to greet me like usual. But Koko did not. She just laid there on the sofa and looked up at me.
This was very unusual for her. She was never a very energetic girl but she would always greet me when I walked in. I knew then for sure that I would not have many more days with her.
Then I woke up in the morning and my mom & dad came in my room to tell me she died shortly before I woke up.
All day that day and all the days after I have been very sad and grieving.
It doesn’t feel the same without her. I have a house full of all kinds of furbabies and featherbabies but her lack of presence is agonizing and obvious.
And one of the worse things is Koko and my other baby, Boobie were extremely close and literally inseparable for over 10 years and they loved each other more than anything else. I have never seen animals with a love like that for each other.
They defended each other against the big bad kitties and they snuggled together all day long.
Now Boobie doesn’t know what is going on. She doesn’t know where her best friend is. She barks and cries now when she never did before. She shakes and keeps looking in the yard.
For us, at least we know what’s going on. We know what happened to Koko.
And I can try to find ways to cope with it.
We had Boobie since she was a few months old and since then she has never lived a day without Koko by her side.
It hurts to wake up and Koko isn’t there and to lay wrapped in my blankets knowing that’s what Koko loved to do and now she can’t.
I feel sorry for Koko that she doesn’t get to live anymore and that she misses out on all the things she loved. I know she doesn’t know she’s missing out but it hurts just the same.
Almost every night after work I would bring home four treats, one for each baby. All four of them would jump happily and come running over for their treat. I share my snacks with them and break a piece off for each one.
It hurts me now to only bring home three treats and to break things into only three pieces and no longer four.
I am happy & blessed that Koko was my furbaby for 12 years and she lived a long and happy life.
The way I handle my grief is similar to the way I handle my depression. I just go about my days as usual, not repressing or denying my pain, although sometimes I want to.
But I won’t collapse into my bed or the floor and stay day and night giving up everything, although sometimes I want to do that too. Different people handle pain differently and I don’t think one way is better than another. It’s all up to the person.
I have grieved before over people and animals and I find that going to work helps me in some ways. I love being around and interacting with people even through my grief.
I am still able to find joy in the small things.
A couple days ago I saw someone’s old, half-eaten lunch on the side of the road and I had to chuckle.
And then a young man walking up the street saw me and said “Yeah, I love this weather; girls are all walking around wearing next to nothing!”. And I found myself laughing again.
I recently went to Johnny Rockets Restaurant with my family and a worker there was dancing around to the Oldie’s music with the cooking utensils. It was so hilarious! I actually got one of those good belly laughs!!
I have found that my grief fluctuates in waves each moment. Some occasions are ok or good while others seem unbearable.
I know my sense of loss and my pain will never go away but I will learn to live with it and cope with it after days, weeks, months.
On Sunday, April 14th, we will be celebrating my pitbull, Isis Summerjo’s sixth birthday!!
We always celebrate their birthdays and anniversaries.
They love special treats and Isis loves toys!! 😀
Unlike my other dogs and cats, Isis is extremely sensitive to the environment and aware of everything going on around her. She loves and craves and demands extra love & attention. My dad calls her an affection hog. She is a very large dog in terms of her weight.
She is low to the ground but she is very plump and weighs over 80 pounds. Boy pits tend to be larger than girl ones and she’s bigger than the average boy! Lol! ❤
She loves when we sing to her. And she pushes the other dogs away when we talk to them so that she can get all the lovin’ for herself!
Last year on her birthday we sang happy birthday to her and she was thrilled!
Then a couple weeks later my mom & sister sang happy birthday to me on my b-day and she thought it was her’s again! Lol it was adorable!
Recently I got two tennis balls at my work for her as a b-day gift for next week.
I kept them hidden in my handbag.
But Isis goes in my bag and snoops around because she knows treats are often in there.
One night when I went out, I came home and found one of the tennis balls on the floor! She went in my bag and took it out to play with!
Then in the morning while I was sleeping she took the other one! Lol! It’s the cutest thing ever!!
She steals whatever she can get her paws on! ❤
On Thanksgiving my mom made a turkey for my dad, sister, and herself(I’m a vegetarian so none for me) and Isis jumped up at the table and carried off with the entire turkey! My dad was pissed! Lmao!
But my mom got it quick enough!
I know that animals grieve like people do but they don’t know what is going on. I am sad for my other dogs. Boobie especially and then Isis really seem to sense the loss.
It’s weird not to have her here today and to think that everyday she will not be here.
Koko brought us lots of joy, love, and happiness throughout the years and that’s what matters now.
❤ ❤ </3 </3 ❤ ❤
I hope everyone is having a good day/night and if you are grieving over a sad loss, you’re not alone. I’m here grieving too. </3 <3. It’s ok to feel angry and sad and devastated and to express it in healthy ways. Not everyone understands how deep someone’s grief over pet loss can be. Many people feel that it is not justified and do not understand the magnitude of pain and loss of a pet. But there are many who do understand. It’s important to care for yourself even during the grief and loss. Sleep when you’re tired. Eat when you’re hungry. It’s important to nourish your body. It’s ok to feel joy or not for a while. You can cry or not or laugh if you want. Your grief doesn’t have to look or feel like anyone else’s or any certain way. My heart goes out to anyone grieving any kind of loss.
“How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.”
― A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
“To love life, to love it even
when you have no stomach for it
and everything you’ve held dear
crumbles like burnt paper in your hands,
your throat filled with the silt of it.
When grief sits with you, its tropical heat
thickening the air, heavy as water
more fit for gills than lungs;
when grief weights you like your own flesh
only more of it, an obesity of grief,
you think, How can a body withstand this?
Then you hold life like a face
between your palms, a plain face,
no charming smile, no violet eyes,
and you say, yes, I will take you
I will love you, again.”
X0xo Kim ❤
P.S. Koko is the baby laying on top. The pomeranian mix.
Boobie is the chihuahua mix and that big baby in the other pic is Isis Summerjo!! ❤