April 18th

Wednesday, April 18th, 2018

Each day gets a little bit easier.

Distance from Monday brings clarity. Clarity continues to break through the grief. Paul, myself, and the cats (who haven’t been far from my side all week) are finding our new normal.

I keep defaulting to my favorite worship song, Trust In You by Lauren Daigle:

When You don’t move the mountains // I’m needing you to move
When You don’t part the waters // I wish I could walk through
When You don’t give the answers // As I cry out to You
I will trust, I will trust, I will trust in You

The key lyric for me the last few days is “When You don’t give the answers.” I tend to be a “decision by committee” kind of person. I lack trust in my own decisions, so I look to others for support and confirmation. That’s why Monday was so hard. The ultimate decision of life or death, and no one could make that choice but me. I couldn’t change my mind once it was made. The guilt was all on my shoulders. This sweet little soul trusted me in all of his care, and I felt so much like I had given up on him and betrayed him.

I know deep down that wasn’t the case, but that’s the darkness that’s plagued my mind. The haze I’ve had to fight through.

I’ve cried so hard the past couple days I’ve actually scared the cats. Raw, unbridled sorrow. Screaming sobs to breathlessness. The loneliness was all encompassing. I’ve never felt this level of grief, not even with Val.

But there is light there, too. The clarity I’ve been hungry for: Burke’s pain is gone. The seemingly endless meds, syringe-feeding food, the stressful trips to the vet, the surgeries, they’re all done. He was ready, even if I wasn’t. I knew that, and I knew I couldn’t hold onto him for the sake of my fear of loss. I could see his slow decline, and again, he was ready, but it doesn’t make the decision any easier, the grief any less real.

Every memory I allow to surface helps heal, even while it hurts. The more I look at pictures of him, the less painful his sweet face is to look at. While grief can feel so isolating, all of the love from friends and family brings perspective. The more people who know, the more I realize what an amazing community I have, and that brings immense comfort. All of the people who have stepped forward with love, hugs, and a genuine want to reach out and spend time is truly incredible.

I don’t use this word often, as I think it can be overused, but Paul and I are so completely blessed by all of you.

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