I recently had a dear friend, Janet who lost her dog after 16 years. We spoke at length about her feelings after her dog passed away. I have learned that it is important to name the individual or animal who has passed away. Janet’s dog was named Krishna. Krishna is a biblical name meaning ‘All-Attractive’. After learning Krishna’s name, I immediately understood the draw to her. I could also empathize with losing a close companion after such a long time. Shortly after my parents died, I inherited their dog who was in bad health due to her age. Her name was Georgie Girl and she was my dog’s best friend. When Georgie Girl declined very quickly and we eventually had to euthanize her, I was devastated. I felt like I lost another member of my family. I displayed all of the same emotions as when I grieved the loss of my parents.
As it pertains to Janet, her dog was a very close companion to her and her husband. Although Krishna was considered her dog, both her and her husband grieved. They grieved differently as most couples do. Janet also gave me insight into the way she grieved. She cried a lot. She began to journal her prior experiences of grief as well as her current grief with Krishna. Janet was very wise to let her emotions come as they may and not stifle them. My friend experienced feelings of sorrow, depression and memories of the past which also triggered grief. Although, grief is different for everyone, there is a common element to the healing process. That common element is to allow yourself to process the grief as a natural evolution. The emotions, feelings and thoughts are natural and allow you to heal. Suppressing any or all of those will slow your process to regaining joy in life again.
The point of my writing today is that there are many forms of grief. My friend experienced the grief associated with her dog, Krishna. Grief comes in many other forms such as: loss of a job, retirement, divorce, losing a home, moving to a new school, infertility, declining health or loss of a close personal relationship.
…In case you did not know, Anthropoid means resembling a human being…