When a friend passes …

“Grief is like the ocean; it comes on waves ebbing and flowing. Sometimes the water is calm, and sometimes it is overwhelming. All we can do is learn to swim.” – Vicki Harrison

Sadness, emotional pain, feelings of emptiness, and more visit me in volume as I move through these early stages of grief.  A trusted friend … playmate … loving irritant … and amazing partner in life has died.  His death sears my heart with a hot iron, leaving a fresh, deep, and painful wound.  And though I know that with time healing will occur, I also know that the residual scar will always bring forth the loving memories connected with the time we spent together.  Ollie was his name, and “friend and kitty” was his game … and yesterday’s painful decision to take away his suffering will linger for some time until healing begins.

At times like this, the most powerful losses in your life parade by, lingering just long enough to pull hidden feelings from deep cavities within your heart.  This newest pain will soon begin to find itself into these archives and add to future moments when one must feel them to move through the intense emotion of deep loss.  But now the wound is just too fresh and still moist, so time … more time … is needed to allow enough healing to enable me to travel the journey of life unencumbered once again.  Until then I simply need to “tough it out” while honoring my feelings and allowing them to vent in meaningful and healthy ways.

The intensity of the pain is a measure of the depth of loving connection.  In life, the formula is that to experience the joys of deep, loving connection one must become vulnerable and with such vulnerability comes the future cost of painful loss.  Its just the way it is (through my eyes) … the price of admission so to speak … but a cost well worth the incredible joy experienced.  Life is supposed to create joy in our journey, and creating deep, penetrating, loving connection is an enabler to doing so.

So, I mourn and reflect. Dry my eyes at moments of intense, spontaneous sadness. Fondly recall joyful moments and behaviors that brought life to its richness and travel the journey of grief.  It’s a journey one cannot escape for the treasure of love gained.  It simply is what is … and I will walk in occasional pain until the pain becomes memories.

Good by my friend … my loved one … my Ollie!  I am grateful I got to hold you in my arms as you drifted into your new phase of existence.  I miss you so very much, but I am happy that you suffer no more.  Thank you for enriching my life and making me more whole and loving in the process.  You were a gift that I will never forget.  Be peace and joy …

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