Jul 7

Hello from Griefland

Category: Uncategorized

It hasn’t been a full week yet. It is ok that I’m not ok. I keep telling myself this but then I go back to wailing I LOVE YOU I LOVE YOU IM SORRY every time I’m alone.

Yesterday was truly bad. I spent most of the morning drowning in hopelessness and feeling like I couldn’t go on. None of the pet grief hotlines are real – busy signals, voice mails, complete wrong numbers. So I looked up general grief hotlines and started texting with someone from one of them. I didn’t help.

But then I called my friend Lisa and we talked for an hour. She is a hospice chaplain and has walked me through the grief process of my Pappap all the way up to Marcy. I should have called her so much earlier because she helped me calm me a little even though much of the beginning of the conversation was me slurring incoherently around uncontrollable sobs.

Lisa said that what she is hearing is that on top of grieving my best friend, I am also grieving the fact that my son is leaving for college. I told her that after this happened, I only feel emotionally stable when Chooch is down here with me during the day. If he goes back to his room, I cry. If he runs to Dunkin, I cry.

It’s compounded grief. Why is this happening. I was taking solace in the fact that Bambi would be here with me when Chooch goes to college and now she’s not here and yes I have Penelope but she is very much the opposite of Drew and doesn’t come around much during the day so I am going to be so alone as I work from home every day.

My favorite tattooist – Erin from Kyklops – messaged me and said I don’t have to wait for her fall bookings to open, she is ready when I am. I know memorializing her on me will be cathartic and I want to get that done ASAP. I am scrambling to grab onto anything that will stabilize me but it feels like I’m paddling through quicksand.

Lisa also made me feel that my emotions are valid and that I shouldn’t feel this distressed over “just a cat” because she truly was so much more than that and the trauma around watching her die in front of me and not being able to stop it after I had always said I would never let anything happen to her, it’s so much. I can’t handle it. This grief is actually making me feel like my heart is going to just stop.

Henry called the vet yesterday, the one I took her to last week, and as soon as he said “Drew” he said that the person he was talking to said, “oh, Bambi” and that made me break down all over again. Anyway, he told them that I’m having a hard time and they gave him some resources for me, one being a pet grief support group that happens to be meeting tomorrow night so I’m going to go to that. I need help. I need so much help.

We went to the Asian market today to get some stuff for Chooch’s graduation party and as we were walking thru the parking lot, an older white lady was like HELLO! as she got out of her car and I was like do we know this lady. No, we didn’t but she was just one of those people who likes to talk to everyone so I ended up walking with her and she was like “I love this place so much, I get so many interesting things here!” and then she asked Chooch if he likes to cook Chinese food and he goes “no but my dad makes Korean food” and she screamed KOREAN!!! through the parking lot and I was like Jesus Christ lady. So she asked me how he got into making Korean food and I gave her the condensed version, ending with us getting married in Korea and she was like Omg congratulations and you know what, I almost started to tell her about Drew because I am so desperate for human connection right now, anyone to listen and empathize, and she seemed like a great candidate but then I was like Erin stop, this lady came here to buy peanut oil (which Henry had to help her choose), she is not here to be your suicide hotline.

I can’t imagine doing anything I used to love to do now that Drew’s not here. I had to ask Henry to change the notification on his phone because I used to mockingly reenact it for her every time it would sound off. I had to ask him to change the song that Alexa would play when I ask for her to turn on the living room light because I used to sing that to her too.

I can’t watch travel vlogs. I can’t watch kpop content. Everything is dead to me. I have had on Sky News all day because there is nothing else that I can stand to have on in the background. Just give me bland British news.

Sorry to sound like a 5-year-old but WHY?! I don’t understand how this happened!!! Why was she taken away from me??

5 comments

5 Comments so far

  1. Janice July 7th, 2024 8:05 pm

    Erin, I am so sorry you are going through this. I remember how difficult it was when Marcy died. I wish knew some magic words that could comfort you. I hope the support group helps.

  2. Erin Kelly, Not Kelly July 7th, 2024 9:48 pm

    Janice that means a lot – thank you for taking the time to check on me. Rationally, I know that I just need time, “day by day” etc. But emotionally it feels like there is no end in sight and that makes me feel like I’m drowning. I have to get myself out of this “what if” cycle because I can’t turn back time and even if I could would it even change anything?? :(

  3. Nat July 15th, 2024 4:21 am

    Ya, well fuck this, I’m so sorry you had to experience this. Having been through a very similar tragedy, I know how absolutely traumatizing this has been for you. And it’s going to just straight up suck for awhile, the sadness comes crashing in like a wave and takes you back down, but as we all know you’re strong af. Anyone who thinks your relationship and the love you shared means less because you’re not mourning a person is obviously a souless ghoul and zero fucks should be given. From what I’ve seen over the yrs, you couldn’t have been a more caring and responsible part of that little shoulder pad’s life. And even though you’re second guessing everyting, there’s nothing you could have done better in the moment, you immediately responded and rushed to the vet even while you were enduring a scary and painful event. You didn’t freeze, you did what needed to be done, which not everybody does. So as painful as this is, know how well you handled it. I made it to our vet but lost it when I got to her, she’s amazing, good vets dont get enough credit. We have a long driveway and when I got to the end of it that day, there was a road crew and they’d dug up across my whole driveway about 4′ deep and the same across so I suddenly had no way to get to the road. I flew out of that car like I was possessed, shrieking to put my driveway back, made up some new swears that day, definitely scared a few of them. Long story short one immediately got back on the backhoe and filled that big ass hole in so I could get out. I’m sure they still tell the story of the crazy lady with the cat and I’ll take that title with pride, they’re family, period.
    Hope you’re all ok right now

  4. Erin Kelly, Not Kelly July 15th, 2024 8:01 am

    Oh Nat – thank you for taking the time to leave these comforting words for me. I’m sorry you also can relate – I wish none of us ever had to feel this way because all of our furry family members should just live forever. It is such a cruel thing that we are forced to go through.

    Today marks two weeks and I am still crying so much and just absolutely wracked with guilt and frustration. Trying to be kind to myself but it is so hard.

    Thank you for being a friend and reaching out. It means so much, and I’m sorry you had a similar experience. :(

  5. Nat July 15th, 2024 9:14 pm

    It’s the trade we have to live with for the truly special love and laughter they add to our lives. Though when the loss part arrives the gut wrenching sorrow makes you question if you can endure the loss. Everything feels weird, there’s a change down to a minute level in your home, it sounds different even and a lot of people don’t get that. Like all of the shit life sends our way there’s no fix, just the true words of Robert Frost, “the only way out is through “.
    And side note. I reread my 1st message and realized that now, when I read “you did what needed to be done” in my head I hear Law Roach speaking, amazing how people just worm their way into my brain.
    Going to go harass my furry gang until they’re all thoroughly annoyed I’ve messed up their afternoon naps to force them to comfort me. It helps , at least a little, go squeeze your other fuzzy, fur is a great absorber of tears lol

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