You're Either Growing Or You're Regressing

Today I am struggling. Actually, I’ve been struggling for the last 4 days.

At approximately 2:50p last Thursday afternoon, I got a call that really no one ever wants to receive. JF was getting ready to run over to Pawhuska, Okla to buy a new cowboy hat with one of his friends. Unfortunately when his friend pulled up the driveway, he ran over and killed our puppy Deets. It’s been 4 days and I still want to throw up at the single thought of this incident.

You’re probably thinking, “Geez, Merrissa, there are starving children all over the world and you’re worried about a dog?” The answer is yes.

Let me rewind to the beginning of the week. Last Monday I was listening to a book and I heard this quote that literally made me stop, rewind and replay; it said:

You’re either growing or you’re regressing

I had to have played this quote over at least 7 times. I added it to the notes section in my phone; I wrote it in my agenda and even penned it on the blackboard in my office.

After the week’s unfortunate event I can’t help but feel like this quote was forecasting my future. Because what else makes you grow quite like living through the loss of a loved one? I’m going to get very real very quickly for a second. I don’t give a shit whether you love dogs, cats, humans, reptiles, insects or all of the above. Whatever brings you joy + happiness and lights up your life is up to you to decide.

If you’ve never loved a “pet” or even had an animal companion, you will not relate to this post. And that’s okay because it takes all kinds to make the world go ‘round.

As most of you know, JF and I closed on our new house on Wednesday. It was a day full of happiness and margaritas. A literal day of celebration. These feelings of bliss were quickly erased when I got the call about Deets. At that moment, my face turned red and I hated the world.

It was supposed to be a long weekend of excitement, painting, decorating and moving into our new house. To be honest, since losing Deets, I can barely get myself to crawl out of bed. The anger and bitterness I still feel towards people appears to be increasing as the hours + days go by. But it's all a part of the healing process. Humans are so resilient and we (especially!) women can handle more shit than we can even imagine ourselves. Even when the skies are grey and all odds are against you, you will always come out on top. 

Losing a pet is hard, no matter how old you are. And although I would never say that raising dogs/cats/[insert desired pet here] is the same caliber as raising human children, the pain and heartache from losing a pet is very real.

Pets often symbolize a child, sibling, best friend or long-term companion; they literally become a part of your family and everyday life. Even more so, when you are a homebody, like myself, and revolve your entire life around the safety and well being of your dogs.

Although everyone grieves differently, there are 4 basic stages of the grieving process; denial, anger, depression + acceptance. I’m still in the anger stage.

It’s funny when something like this happens you start bargaining and manipulating yourself. The night before Deets passed, I was at the new house with Momma J until pretty late in the evening. All I could think about after getting “the call” was wishing I would have been home to spend just a little bit more time with him. And THAT’S a big problem…becoming angry at the reason only leads to bargaining and irrational judgments. Thought’s like, “if only…” and “what if…” can only lead to more stress and feelings of anxiety.  

DiDi is a one of a kind dog. His character + quirks are traits that cannot be replaced. He had an out-of-this-world personality, and if you were around him long enough you didn’t dare get away with not playing fetch or tug-o-war with him.

JF buried Deets with his favorite ball and it comforts me in the tiniest bit knowing that he is raising hell, playing fetch and eating all the yummy dog treats in the world.

 

xx, Riss

 

Disclaimer: this is not a pity post. This is me simply being raw + transparent with you guys. 

Merrissa