Jake, my beloved Yellow lab of 9.5 years, succumbed to lymphoma that traveled to his bone marrow, at 12 midnight last night. He passed away in my arms. I tried both conventional and holistic treatments and traveled along the eastern seaboard to try and save his life, but I failed. I'm also a veterinarian and the pain from his loss is immense, and as I write this, my heart is breaking. Earlier in the day I tendered my resignation at the hospital because the heartbreak is so overwhelming, it's more than I can stand. My employer is upset and asked that I rethink this, but my family is upset and said I need to continue what I'm doing, but Jake's passing has taken much out of me. I'd appreciate any words of encouragement to help me get through this. Right now I just want to lay in a corner and die, such is my grief.
I lost Dash , my 12 year old Springer to Lymphoma, in May, and I felt everything you are feeling. It's both physical and mental. I was unable to function the first week. It's been a week since I broke out in tears. That's the longest stretch yet. People don't understand what you're going through. I even had a shrink who needed a wake up call . He told me "its grief, you just have to deal with it". So I called up his office a week later after not being able to function and asked for a referral to a someone who was experienced in these matters. I have a one man business and I didn't have the finances to shut it down. If I did, I would have.
I'm telling you this so you know that you are no stranger to that kind of pain. It comes in waves and it's relentless...but...it will slowly fade. How fast really depends on you. I took some meds. I had to. It got me through the day.
Two weeks ago, I adopted a rescue dog. It was too early, but they don't get to pick a time when they get abandoned. He's just a pup and I'm going through all the things that I went through with Dash. The first few days with him just broke me down again. The pain was back with a vengeance. But I stuck it out and very slowly we are starting to bond. He sleeps with me and he takes my mind off how shitty life is without Dash. I'm still taking meds. I talk to Dash everyday. I have a big image of him in my living room. I asked him if it would be OK If Caesar could use his leash.
It sounds strange, but it helps me. I guess my main point is; do what you have to do to get through it. People still have a hard time believing that we mourn the loss of these guys more than we do some humans, so it's really difficult to get business acquaintances and family to understand.
I find it sometimes helps when I ask them to imagine how they would feel if their child had just died. Would they be right back into their routines again? So take the time you need. I sometimes say to myself "Damn those were the best 12 years of my life and I didn't realize it until I found Dash dead on my living room floor". But life goes on. They would want us to get on with it and not let their passing be anything but a reminder that we were very very lucky and when it's right, to get on with our lives.
Cry your eyes out when you want and need to and never be ashamed of the grief. It's part of life.