Feeling lost & alone after your loss.
Caring for a terminally ill pet is not easy or knowing when the time is getting close is also difficult, unfortunately like many others, I know all too well how hard that can be. What I found when looking after Buckley (my beautiful Boxer) is that I created a whole new life routine to make sure his needs were my No.1 priority. For example, I always tried to do my best to make sure someone was home, if I was out I would always send a "is Buckley ok" text to who was looking after him, we had our morning and night tablet routine, our food routines, our toilet routines, even before we went to bed I had a before bed routine.
Even though we are kind of restricted somewhat caring for our pets in this way when they are ill we don't care, we love them so much we will do all that we can to help them and we don't care if that restricts us from some of life's activities. What happens after they pass? Our world feels like it comes to a grinding holt. Only hours before we were still so embedded in "Our" routine and now we're just completely lost and literally do not know what to do with ourselves.
What can we do to try and cope with this feeling of emptiness? Majority of us have felt things like, you come home from work and the house is so quiet, you can't hear them walking around the house anymore, you could find yourself just staring into space. I feel this emptiness feeling can often lead us to over thinking every single detail of what has just happened which in turn can create other issues. I can openly admit that after Buckley passed away I mean from the actual moment and for a few weeks after the initial loss I was over thinking everything and was thinking about so much to do with what had happened and what had not happened, it took over my mind.
When you stop to think about this, when they pass it's like this other gear kicks in and sets our mind off on what can be a tangent. I think it's a natural reaction to loss and grief - With an overwhelming sense of missing the one you love comes the crushing awareness of all that you have lost. You’d give anything to be together again, if only long enough to be relieved of your loneliness and to be reassured that your loved one is still a part of your life. Life is different now from what we once knew, we are now learning how to integrate the loss into our life.
🔷Some suggestions for coping with Loneliness and Isolation: 🔷
🔷Think about who is supportive to you in your environment and what gives your life purpose and direction family members, relatives, friends, neighbours, co-workers, teachers, colleagues, clubs, athletic activities. With whom are you most comfortable, and who is the most comfortable (accepting and caring) with your grief? Look for those who will listen without judging you, or for those who have suffered a similar loss.
🔷Find time with others to talk, to touch, to receive support. Be honest with others about what you’re feeling. Allow yourself to express your sadness rather than masking it.
🔷Don’t expect others to guess what you need. When you want to be touched, held, hugged, listened to or pampered, say so.
🔷If all you want from others is help with simple errands, tasks, and repairs, say so.
🔷Let others (especially children) know if and when you need to be alone, so they won’t feel rejected.
🔷Go somewhere and have a good, long cry— and do it as often as you wish. You have every right to miss the loved one who has died. Accept your feelings as normal.
🔷Find time alone to process what’s happened: to remember, to dream, and to think.
🔷Identify your loneliest times, and think of how you can alter your routines and environment (for example, rearrange the furniture in a room; plan your weekends ahead of time; use your microwave for quick, easy meals).
🔷Whilst some people don't think before they speak, bear in mind that many well meaning individuals have yet to experience a significant loss, so they really don’t know what grief feels like, or how to respond, or what to say. They aren’t deliberately trying to hurt you. You can choose to bear with such people, you can enlighten them about what you know of grief, or you can look to others who are more understanding to find the support you need.
🔷Realise that no one can totally understand the relationship you had with your loved one.
🔷Ask people to remember, talk about and share stories about your loved one with you.