Cassie and Frankie 2005
In a recent blog post author Jon Katz talked about the fact that people ask him everyday if he misses or mourns dogs that he has lost. Does he cry for Rose? Does he miss Izzy? His answer struck me in that he said the does not mourn or miss them. That it is a choice what is in his heart and he chooses to not look back and to live in the here and now. He said, “There is no missing. Only being.”
One thing I admire about Jon greatly and am learning to do myself is to really speak how I feel about things. He also does not judge others for their opinions or how they feel. Being a writer and putting himself out there he has certainly endured tough scrutiny from others when they don’t agree with him.
While I will give him what is his to feel, I just have to say after I read that post, it almost for a moment made me feel like perhaps something was wrong with me that I still miss Frankie, and still miss my chocolate Lab, Cassie Jo- both very instrumental in my life. To not miss them is not something I could easily do. If I had my way, they’d both still be here with me. But I also know for me, there is nothing wrong with me that I miss them. And I also know that I am strong enough to move forward and enjoy the here and now, and look to the future. I hope that for others, too, and that a loss that is deep does not stop others from living their lives to the fullest.
It used to bother me when people would say after someone passed, “Well, so and so would want you to be happy.” I wondered, How did they really know that? But when I think about myself not being here someday, I would want for those I love to be happy. I would want them to still do all the things they enjoy. I think that with Frankie, too. I know she wouldn’t want me to be sad for too long– that she wants me to love another weenie dog someday. And when it comes to dogs, we all know, there are plenty out there just waiting to be loved.
So while I’m baffled at Jon not missing or mourning dogs that have passed on, I admire him for being able to say so. And one thing I really learned when I was part of a group that helped others mourning the grief of a pet is that there is no right or wrong way to do this. We each have to do what is right for us. Jon’s post also gives me the courage to say, hey I’m doing pretty well, and moving forward, and enjoying the here and now, but I still sure do miss Frankie who was my partner, my friend, my teacher, my guide, and my snuggle bug…. and I’ll always miss her… but I’ll always smile when thinking of her and all she gave to me in this time and space that she did. I’ll carry on little one…. I promise.