Tag Archives: Gizmo grief

Healing Time

There has been some discussion on how quickly people heal after the loss of a loved one. The books say anywhere from six weeks to six months depending on the connection. It’s only been five weeks since my Gizmo died, so I haven’t even hit the bare minimum in terms of grieving. I need time.

To all my loving friends and family: this is the normal grieving process. It’s okay to be sad and it’s okay to mourn. I feel sad. I feel sad in the way that I miss my Gizmo and not in the way that I’m spiraling downward into a great dark abyss. I’ve spent enough time in therapy to know that the only person who knows me best is me. I know I need time.

I understand that my grief may seem distressing and difficult to handle. I can’t tell you when it will end. I can’t tell you when I’ll feel better, I just will.

Gizmo was like a child to me and if you think how human parents mourn the loss of a child then perhaps that will put it into perspective for non-animal lovers. The loss of a child can destroy marriages and people. The loss of a child can make a parent leave their entire lives behind and seek a new beginning where nobody know them or knows of their deep grief.

Gizmo was a part of my every waking hour. I thought of him often and he brought a light and joy to my life that I wish I could find again. I might not ever “get over it”, but I will find a special place in my heart for Gizmo and my life will go on. It will never be the same life. It will forever be changed by the course of events that occurred on Aug 2, 2011.

If I could have changed just one small thing on that night then my life would be different. Then I’d still be happy and joyful, and still have that incredible light in my life. I can’t go back in time. I can’t change what happened. I wish everyday that I could have my Gizmo back.

I still have a huge swamp of guilt to wade through. You can tell me it wasn’t my fault, but the reality is I didn’t keep my boy safe. I didn’t protect him and for that I have guilt. Nothing can take that way, but I admit it and accept it.

Today is September 8, 2011 and eight years ago today my mother died. She was one of the few people who really understood me. She got me in ways that nobody else ever could. She got me in ways that only a mother can understand a child. There is a connection between a parent and child and when that connection is suddenly and violently severed it hurts for both individuals.

I miss my mom, but I know she and Gizmo are sitting on couch watching their favorite shows and eating a bag of regular potato chips. I know they are watching me like a mother watches their child, and a child watches their mother. With love and adoration.

I might still cry a little too much. I might think about my Gizmo a little too often, but yesterday I looked a picture of Gizmo and smiled. It only happened once, but that’s progress.

I love you little dude and mom. Keep safe.

Water Wings

It hit me when… 
I was putting on my socks.
I was cutting the grass and I looked out on the road.
I was walking out to turn off the water pump.
I was feeding the dogs. 
I was getting the mail. 
I was planning our next puppy friendly vacation. 


When I found the little brown sweater with the buttons on it that is the same colour as Gizmo. 


It’s my last thought at night before I fall into a shallow sleep and the first thought when I wake up. 


He’s gone. My Gizmo is gone and I can’t change it. I can’t bring him back and I miss him so much it hurts.


I got the package in the mail from International Therapy Dogs with Taz & Gizmo’s ID cards and information. Gizmo would have been an amazing therapy dog.


Sometimes when I’m outside and it’s really sunny, I think: Gizmo wouldn’t have been outside much today because he didn’t like it when it was too sunny; or when it rained, but he loved the snow. He’d push his way through and you could almost hear his puppy giggle. He’d come in covered in snowballs delighted with himself. He was always so delighted with himself. 


I miss him so much. Life goes on and thing go on and work goes on, but I still miss him every moment of everyday. I can’t think of much I wouldn’t trade to get my Gizmo back.


My heart aches and the tears fall as I think of his chubby little body and his happy smile. I’m sad or angry or empty. I still smile, but it’s only through the tears. 


I can barely hear the things going on around me. It sounds like the radio is on low and I can’t quite make out the words to the song, but I can hear the noise. It’s like Charlie Brown’s teacher talking. I know things are happening and the world is spinning, but I’m not really a part of it. 


I like riding my motorcycle and the wind knocks the thoughts out of my head. I like going a little too fast. I like a little danger. It makes me feel a little more alive, but this is when it hits me. Gizmo hated my motorcycle. 


I have been reading a little on grief and I know everything I’m feeling is normal. I found this great quote about the ocean: 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.


I could really use some water wings.  

Farm Life Goes On

Amid our sadness and grief there are still other animals that must be tended to and care for with summer quickly fading to fall. The tire needs to be fixed on the tractor. The hay building needs to be cleaned out and the roof repaired. The pig shelter needs to be moved, insulated, sided and fenced.

The water needs a float.  A trip to the feed store is in order for chicken feed, pig feed and some more white electric fence ribbon.

We have two roofs to fix and a shelter to build for the backhoe before October. This doesn’t include the daily activities of feeding and watering. This doesn’t include puppy care, foster care, vet visits and some sort of social life.

It’s amazing I have time to cry. We’ve had to stop recent projects because of the grief. Brent and I simply could not move forward. We had to sit and cry. We miss our little dude who was a huge part of our daily life. It’s not getting easier and in some ways it’s harder the farther away we get from the day Gizmo died.

We did get the pig shelter built, moved and sided. We’ve gotten to visit with a handful of friends. We’ve been lucky enough to share our grief. There’s a lot of people that miss Gizmo.

Life on the farm must go on, but every few hours the loss hits me in the gut like a Mike Tyson punch. It hits me in the core and rattles everything. I have to stop. I can’t breathe. It’s the same image that causes me to double over – picking his little body up off the road knowing.

It’s seeing his body in the dark, not moving, not breathing and Brent immobile over top. It’s scooping him up and his head lists to the side. It’s cuddling him until his warmth is gone.

A friend said I need to find the joy back in life. I have smiled as Vincent comes to life with our love. I have smiled when we brought Autumn a bale of this years hay and she nickered in delight.

I’ve laughed at Brent arguing with the j-trim as we sided the pig building, but deep down there is a sadness. A loss. Immense grief that catches me off guard and knocks me down for the day.

Time is a great healer and most of the time, I’m filling time, until time passes. That’s like therapy. Ironic that the beast that took my Gizmo is the same thing that gives me comfort. The farm. I hate it and I love it.

I’ve been thinking about the beach lately. I’ve been thinking about long walks on the beach with no cars. I’ve been thinking about winter isolation. I’ve been thinking about escaping for a little while. I guess I’ve been thinking a lot lately.

I miss Gizmo.

Changing the bedroom

I clean out my bedroom today. I put in a new TV wall mount and hooked everything up and it works. I moved out a couch and put in a ramp, so the dogs can still get on the bed. I thought of Gizmo the whole time.

When Taz and Poco would retire for a nap while I re-organized a part of the house, but Gizmo would watch and jump on every opportunity to play and plunder. I missed his little chubby body while I moved the wall unit without his help. I picked up a package of unchewed paper and thought of my little dude.

I put the drill bit down knowing he wouldn’t be trying to eat the sawdust and possibly cut his lips on the drill bit. I moved things and thought of Gizmo.

He would have had a great time today re-arranging the bedroom. He was always my co-conspirator when it came to moving the furniture of the house. Nary a blanket was moved without his spit or at least a quick bite of a pillow.

I can only hope he would approve of the new changes. I wish he was here to give the okay.

Another long day of missing my boy. Another full moon trying to break through the clouds. Another car going too fast down my road.

I want to tell you all a happy tale of moving the pig house, but I’m not ready. I don’t know when I’ll be ready.