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Thread: Holidays can be hard...

  1. #11
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    Default Re: Holidays are hard...

    Thanks for all who have shared and thank you for this "category."

    It has been almost 4 months since Palmer crossed over. I thought I was doing "pretty well." Thanksgiving dinnertime came and we sat down in the "formal" dining room to enjoy our meal. (We have a small table which the two of us dine at most of the time.) It suddenly hit me that Palmer was missing. Whenever we sat in the dining room (3 or 4 times a year), Palmer would sit underneath the table. I'd never see him go there, but if I looked for him and looked under the tablecloth, I always saw him sitting at attention! He never begged for anything. He would sit there ready to taste any morsel. Once I finished eating, I would pick him up, to table height, and sit him on my lap. He loved being one of the "adults." On rare occasion he would sit at my side, looking forlorn, like-"Hey! You know I'm here!!.) He never spoke and had the patience of a saint. Well, Thursday I silently cried through most of the dinner. There is still such a hole left now that he is gone.

    I dread thinking of Christmas morning,. He LOVED unwrapping presents. He loved the crinkle of the paper. He could always somehow find the gifts that were for him. And when he had had enough excitement, he would stretch out, between my legs, on the recliner and stay there as long as I would. If I had to let him down in order to stretch my legs, he always understood. He was ready at any minute to come back up.

    We think we have a puppy in the making. There is a mama with four little pups "in the oven." If all goes well, at the end of January we will be taking quite a road trip/vacation and then be bringing home our newest family member. It's wonderful to think about the little guy or gal bouncing around as puppies do. (It's not wonderful to think about going through house training!)

    Still I sometimes carry his collar in my pocket. Still I have on our bed the stuffed, squeaky duck that is every bit as big as he was....with the stiff area on the hip, where he sucked on it like Linus's blanket.

    I love him so and so would like to have him back-but healthy, of course. His "ending" was so sudden. I just wasn't prepared. Perhaps one never is.

    This is a wonderful forum and full of such loving people. I hope you'll share my new puppy adventure with me. I am so NOT meant to not have a dog.

    Happy holidays everyone. May all of you, especially those of you with the still raw wounds, remember the good times. They are looking out over us.
    -Susan

  2. #12
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    Default Re: Holidays are hard...

    Leslie-I am so sorry for your loss. My son is 31 and the thought of being without him is inconceivable. How wonderful that you saw your daughter reach a place of peace. Those demons can be very nasty. Thanks for sharing.

    -Susan

  3. #13
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    Default Re: Holidays are hard...

    Quote Originally Posted by Palmer's Mom View Post

    It has been almost 4 months since Palmer crossed over. I thought I was doing "pretty well." Thanksgiving dinnertime came and we sat down in the "formal" dining room to enjoy our meal. (We have a small table which the two of us dine at most of the time.) It suddenly hit me that Palmer was missing. Whenever we sat in the dining room (3 or 4 times a year), Palmer would sit underneath the table. I'd never see him go there, but if I looked for him and looked under the tablecloth, I always saw him sitting at attention! He never begged for anything. He would sit there ready to taste any morsel. Once I finished eating, I would pick him up, to table height, and sit him on my lap. He loved being one of the "adults." On rare occasion he would sit at my side, looking forlorn, like-"Hey! You know I'm here!!.) He never spoke and had the patience of a saint. Well, Thursday I silently cried through most of the dinner. There is still such a hole left now that he is gone.

    I dread thinking of Christmas morning,. He LOVED unwrapping presents. He loved the crinkle of the paper. He could always somehow find the gifts that were for him. And when he had had enough excitement, he would stretch out, between my legs, on the recliner and stay there as long as I would. If I had to let him down in order to stretch my legs, he always understood. He was ready at any minute to come back up.

    We think we have a puppy in the making. There is a mama with four little pups "in the oven." If all goes well, at the end of January we will be taking quite a road trip/vacation and then be bringing home our newest family member. It's wonderful to think about the little guy or gal bouncing around as puppies do. (It's not wonderful to think about going through house training!)

    Still I sometimes carry his collar in my pocket. Still I have on our bed the stuffed, squeaky duck that is every bit as big as he was....with the stiff area on the hip, where he sucked on it like Linus's blanket.

    I love him so and so would like to have him back-but healthy, of course. His "ending" was so sudden. I just wasn't prepared. Perhaps one never is.

    This is a wonderful forum and full of such loving people. I hope you'll share my new puppy adventure with me. I am so NOT meant to not have a dog.

    Happy holidays everyone. May all of you, especially those of you with the still raw wounds, remember the good times. They are looking out over us.
    -Susan
    It's always hard the first few months after they've passed; I agree. You think you are doing OK, and then suddenly, something just reminds you that they are no longer there and it slams you in the face. Part of me wishes I could be like others who can brush it off and say "it's just a dog", but then what would be the point, eh?

    I made Mandy a little memorial in my bedroom; her cherry wood urn is there with the lovely picture of her sitting in the grass inserted in the front of it--she was 12 yrs old then. Atop the urn is her puppy picture so I can remember her both at the beginning and later in her life. Alongside, I put 2 of her favorite toys and her collar. Every morning I talk to her a bit before I head out for the day. Am I a sentimental sap or what? I don't know...I think I've been closer to my dogs than I have with a lot of people.

    And, every Christmas, I still remember my other Aussie, Dolly...my little X-Mas girl. What a doll she was! I somehow lost her collar when she made her last emergency visit to the vet and I was devastated by that...I don't know why, it just was another loss on top of losing her and bothered me terribly. So, when Mandy passed, one of my first questions was "Do you have her collar?"....I was so relieved to get it back. And no, you are never "ready" regardless of the circumstances; there is never enough time.

    Eh, us dog lovers are an oddball bunch! I am happy to hear that you'll be getting a new pup early next year Susan. Please do share the good news and lots of pictures with us! They ARE wonderful fun when they are puppies, even with the housebreaking headaches! LOL!

    Jeff & Angel Mandy

  4. #14
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    Default Re: Holidays are hard...

    Squirt was supposed to be Gia's baby. Gia was dating the son of the woman who owned the bitch. Both of Squirt's parents are show dogs - the male a Cairn Terrier, the female a Long Haired Chihuahua. The owners of the parents were LIVID about this litter and the plan was to drown all five puppies. But Lance talked his mom into letting him find homes for them instead. Since Gia was his girl-friend, she got the pick of the litter and she chose Squirt. When the puppies were 5 weeks old, Lance's mom said they had to go NOW; one way or the other the sickening evidence of this horrible mistake would be removed from her sight that day. So, at 5 weeks of age, the puppies were pulled from their mom and delivered to those who wanted them.

    When Squirt was brought to us, Gia was gone to the Gulf with friends for a few weeks and by the time she got home, it was much, much to late - Squirt was my baby through and through, and Gia became her Sissy. Squirt had the best of all worlds - a mom who loved her to distraction and a sissy who spoiled her rotten. Squirt was never alone the first few years of her life. If she wasn't with me, she was with Gia. Until Squirt got too big, Gia and I typically wore clothes with large pockets into which we would put our Sweet Bebe so she could go too. I got caught more than once in WalMart when her little head would poke out of the pocket or bib of my Big Smith overalls! Gia took her to a movie one time in her Big Smiths and got caught half-way through the movie when Squirt decided to talk to the characters on the screen! LOL Gia adamantly insisted Squirt had every right to be with her in that theatre and if Squirt couldn't go in then she wanted her money back. Which she got- then was politely escorted to her car, money, dog and all!

    Squirt's first Christmas was HUGE at our house. I always went over-board with gifts for Gia at Christmas so she felt Squirt deserved the same. Every shopping trip I would hear something like this, "But, Mom, this would look so cute on Squirt!" or "Oh, Mama, look at this! Squirt would love this, don't you think?" So we would come home with half our packages holding toys and goodies for Squirt. She had as many gifts under the tree as Gia did!

    The contents of the boxes didn't interest Squirt as she had no idea there was more to them than the bows and bright papers. But, man, did she love the boxes! She just knew this was a grand new game we had come up with just for her. They were there for her to take flying leaps into, bounce around on, push across the floor with her nose, then snarl and growl while tugging on the larger ones she couldn't shove. I would walk by her bed 10x a day to find bows carefully removed from presents and placed there in a pile. There was lots of re-bowing, re-taping, and re-arranging that Christmas! But for some reason, Squirt never bothered the tree or the ornaments.

    This was when we learned about Squirt's strong mothering instinct. Among her presents were several toys with squeakers in them. The first time she heard a squeak, her little ears perked up and her eyes got this very intense look in them. Squirt came up to the toy that had squeaked, nosed it around, licked it for a second, then very gently picked it up like a bitch would a puppy and laid it in her bed where she nosed and licked some more. She treated every squeaky toy in this manner while the quiet ones were subject to much chewing, tossing, and tugging. We could take all the squeaky toys out of her bed, place them through the house, and she would take each one back to bed after carefully checking them out. It was so precious to watch! Those were her babies and they stayed looking as new as the day she got them for years.

    As she has aged, she has lost interest in toys, bows and packages but she still catches the Christmas fever and just has to walk through the boxes under the tree. A more stately walk to be sure, but in my heart I believe she remembers.

    I know she remembers her Sissy because if she hears that word, she perks up and starts looking for her. They were sisters in the purest sense. One day, Gia, Squirt and I, along with all those we love and have lost will gather once again around the Tree that shines with light for all time.

    One day, we will all be reunited with our loved ones, wrapped forever in a loving Light that will never dim. I believe when that time comes, we will all look back on our earthly days here with complete understanding of the tragedies we have each faced, we will have full knowledge of the things we cannot comprehend now, and the joys and love we have experienced here will grow to fill our beings to bursting, leaving no room for anything else.

    Hugs,
    Leslie
    "May you know that absence is full of tender presence and that nothing is ever lost or forgotten." John O'Donahue, "Eternal Echoes"

    Death is not a changing of worlds as most imagine, as much as the walls of this world infinitely expanding.

  5. #15
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    Default Re: Holidays are hard...

    Susan - I am sooooo glad to hear from you!

    HUGSHUGSHUGSHUGS
    "May you know that absence is full of tender presence and that nothing is ever lost or forgotten." John O'Donahue, "Eternal Echoes"

    Death is not a changing of worlds as most imagine, as much as the walls of this world infinitely expanding.

  6. #16
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    Default Re: Holidays are hard...

    Leslie,
    Thanks for sharing such lovely memories of Gia and Squirt.
    Really made me smile and I need that right now.

    BTW--I was wondering why Squirt had the longer hair...seemed unusual for a Cairn...now I know that a Chihuahua made that happen! She is such a cutie...love the part about the X-Mas bows.

    Jeff & Angel Mandy
    Last edited by jrepac; 11-30-2010 at 02:53 PM.

  7. #17
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    Default Re: Holidays are hard...

    Leslie...you just gave me a nice, warm feeling. Thanks!

    -Susan

  8. #18
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    Default Re: Holidays are hard...

    My dad has been gone for ten years now, his death was very hard for me as I fought for him the last month of his life. I do not dream of him very often but last night I did dream of my Dad. When I awoke this morning, I had a warm fuzzy feeling and layed quietly for a moment, smiling and said "Hi Dad, glad I saw you last night, you always know when I need you."

    And he does for whenever I am in a hard place, I meet my Dad in my dreams. He comforts me and gives me the strength to go on.

    So dear friends, I truly believe in life ever after and please remember our loved ones are never very far away for they remain in our hearts and souls forever and that includes our precious fur babys

    Happy Holidays,
    Addy

  9. #19
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    Default Re: Holidays are hard...

    My Mom died after a five year battle with cancer. She died on her birthday and she was only 64. While I had stood by her side those five years, I was still lost when she died. She had had such a rough time with her cancer treatments. I kept asking for a sign something that would tell me she was okay. I kept asking and I kept asking. One day I was returning home from work. Our street sign at the end of the street had been missing for months. It was back. The sign was back! I took that as my "sign." God has a good sense of humor!

    Things were hard for quite awhile after she died. We had been very close and she had fought a valiant fight against her cancer. She told me one day, when the cancer returned after we thought we had "won," that she felt she had had a good life. She had seen her two children grown and out on their own. She had had five years with Ryan that she would not have had had she not fought her cancer. She was okay....she specifically told me I needed to know she was okay.

    She felt she had a "thing" with my son because he liked lights....Christmas lights, flashlights, lightening bugs. They always were discovering lights. Soon after her death, I noticed that while we were driving along, sometimes, just as we got under a street lamp, they would go "out." I don't remember how it started but we started thinking that as we drove along and got right under a street lamp, if it went out it was Mom's way of saying "Hello. I'm here." It often happened. We'd be driving along, get directly under a street lamp and it would go out/off. I started thinking there was something to this. I also started noticing that when I was going through an especially stressful time, it always seemed to happen. It's like she was watching over me and, again, letting me know she was there.

    Now, I knew this was kind of silly. One evening things seemed especially hard and I went for a walk. We lived in an urban area, so there were sidewalks all around us. I walked one block away to where there is a middle school and tennis courts and soccer fields. I walked under a street lamp and it went out. It kind of spooked me. I walked down about fifty feet, turned around and looked at the lamp. It was still out. I said to myself, and the "man" upstairs - if there really is anything to this, as I walk back, the street lamp will go on. Darned if it didn't go on just as I walked beneath it.

    So-thereafter I decided that my "theory" was right. If I was wrong, no harm done. It made me feel better. And I really liked thinking Mom was around. It's almost 20 years now and the street lamps are still going out. Every time one does, I say out loud...."Hi, Mom!" And darned if, more times than not, it's a time when this presence is really helpful to me. It gives me warmth and a feeling that I am not alone. She's right there with me. My son has been "in" on this since the beginning - he was 5 when she died. I'm not sure what he thinks about all this, but if a light goes out when we're together, I say "There's Grandma!"

    I personally do believe that this life on earth is not the end of it. I have read, and choose to believe, that when we get to the next level, we will look back and see that our lives on earth are just like a blink of the eye. What is waiting for us all is more beautiful than we can imagine and will be so much more of our total "lives." I think that Palmer is there......and Peaches, and they are both healthy and romping around. Peaches was so loved by my Mom and I expect they have reunited and introduced her to Palmer. They have found one another and are pleased with the Mom they have.

    We can all find little bits of peace every day, if we so choose.

    -Susan

  10. #20
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    Default Re: Holidays are hard...

    Today we put up our Christmas tree and I missed my dad especially. Today is his birthday, and if he were still alive, we would have been celebrating him, and he would have been celebrating the tree -- because there was nothing that he loved more than decorating the tree. He and I, especially. We loved everything about it, from picking out the tree, to hauling it indoors, to stringing the lights, to hanging the ornaments, to finishing it all off with those silver tin foil "icicles" that we had back in the 50's. Well, almost finishing it off. Because truly the last thing we did was to hang little bells all around the lowest branches of the tree. We were a "cat family," and when I was very small, my beloved kitty got the clever idea to try to climb up the Christmas tree and instead knocked it "splat" on the floor. So from that time onward and through the next generation of cats, the bells were always hung as the "cat alarm." If any of us were to hear even a tiny tinkle, we were to run to the tree as fast as we could -- just to make sure it stayed standing.

    I still have those bells. And last thing today, I hung them at the very bottom of my tree. They no longer serve their use as an alarm, cuz the tree sits inside an exercise pen in order to keep the dogs at bay. But they remind me of my dad and my kitties. I wish my dad could have helped me today. And I keep hoping that someday I may be at the far end of the house and I'll hear a bell tinkle, just like in the old days. If it were to happen, I would run back to the tree as fast as I could. If only I could have those times back again, if only for a few moments. If only I could pet my kitties and if only I could give my dad a birthday hug.

    Marianne

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