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This topic is not my favorite but it is part of life. We grieve for many reasons: loss of something, loss of someone, a move, death of a relationship, and death. Part of healing is allowing yourself to grieve. In a weird way, there is comfort in grieving. I have done my share of ugly crying and while my heart was breaking, I felt really close to the being I was grieving, and THAT brought me comfort. It didn't feel like comfort at the time, but that is what it was. So I ugly cried for hours. That's ok. That is what was needed.

The danger is staying in that grief for an extended period of time. Of course, no one can tell someone else what an appropriate time for grieving looks like, but if you are overcome with grief a month or two after passing, let me rephrase: If you are overcome with grief on a daily basis and cannot find joy in the memory of that being and it has been a month or two, I would encourage you to seek help. I am not a mental health expert, but it stands to reason that any emotion that extends past a few months, and more importantly, one that you cannot control, is not healthy.

When I lost my dog, Little Bear, I was devastated. It was the hardest thing I have ever experienced. I had lost my parents already, which was also very hard. I had gone through break-ups, a divorce, financial struggles, and the usual hardships of life. Yet, when Little Bear passed away it was a punch in the gut like no other. As I said earlier, I ugly cried for hours, days even. I get it. I understand that loss. I still miss him and still wish he was here physically. But, he is not. I could not wallow in sadness and grief indefinitely. I could not because I reminded myself of an important truth: Little Bear would not want me to be sad.

I am blessed to be able to communicate with animals, both live and those that crossed over. So communicating with Little Bear did help me go through the grieving process. However, not having his physical body here was not eased by the communication. What did help, was knowing that he was happy, joyful, and elated even. He was pain-free. Light in spirit. The best version of himself. Knowing he was so happy made me happy. When I stopped focusing on myself and my own desires and focused on what was best for Little Bear, the grief lessened.

In the days that followed, I cried less and laughed more at the memories we had together. I focused on his goofy behavior, his loving mannerisms, and his smart antics. It became less about my loss and more about his relief and joy. I still cried from time to time, and I still miss him, but the crying is not gut-wrenching and the missing- well it is what it is. Little Bear does not want me to be overwhelmed or overcome with grief. It is my responsibility to honor that request and live my best life- if not for me, for him.

I guess when I thought less selfishly (my loss, my pain, my wants) and thought more of Little Bear (pain-free, joyful, at peace), the grieving lessened and I was more able to let go of the negative emotions and embrace all the memories with love and joy. I hope this blog helps you. Please remember that our loved ones want us to be happy and to remember them with a smile. If you can't do it for them, please seek help. I want you to be happy and joyful too.

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