Grieving is a Process


Aristotle and I on one of our walks.

Some of you may have noticed that I have not been posting for a few weeks.

That’s because in early March, I lost a very important companion, my best friend. Aristotle, my Australian Border Collie mix died very suddenly and Dover Cat and I were in shock and devastated.

It hurts so much when someone you know turns into someone you knew. (And Aristotle was a someone, not something. He was so much more to me than just a dog.)

I wish to thank my daughter, Heather for dropping everything and driving eight hours to be with me. My son, Joel, tried to comfort me but had a hard time of it and couldn’t talk about it for a while. (He’s a dog whisperer and loved Aristotle as much as I did.) He did check in periodically, though to make sure I was okay. And my brother, Thom, and his family sent flowers. Thanks Marie, they were beautiful.

Each of them held the space for me to grieve. I also received lots of sympathy cards and wishes from our friends. Thank you. It helped.

Dover, my cat and Aristotle’s best friend, was at a loss too. He took up the responsibility of helping me move on. The three of us had a routine and we would walk in the afternoon. After four days without a walk, Dover insisted we go and he stopped at all of the spots that Aristotle used to stop.

Dover the cat

Dover Cat

But perhaps the best gift was that fact that no one judged me for the amount of time it took me to come out of my funk. Even though people knew he was my dog, they understood. People understood.

It’s not for us to judge how long it takes to grieve, but to give yourself and others the space to grieve. Because the capacity to acknowledge loss is as much a part of us as the capacity to love.

Thank you.