Monday, October 24, 2011

What I Do About Loss

It's been a rough month or so. It all started when my little schnauzer, Trey, was following me up the stairs, you know like velcro dogs do. I turned around and gave him a quick scratch under the chin like he likes. That's when I noticed two little lumps on his neck. I felt them for a moment, muttering under my breath, "well that doesn't feel right," and then went about my day. The next day I called the vet and to make a long, painful story short, it was determined that Trey had lymphoma, a very aggressive form of cancer.

It went from oh-that-doesn't-feel-right, to three weeks later taking him for the last time to the Vet for a quiet push across the Rainbow Bridge.

As you can imagine, the grief of losing one of my best friends has taken its toll on everything else in my life. I found myself completely unable to do any writing. Sitting down at my computer would just remind me of the fuzzy foot rest I always had at my feet and the random pictures in my computer containing a face or tail or leg of Trey, always in the background, always part of the family.

So I threw myself into some art projects. My sister-in-law, Brittany, replaced all of the old, wooden windows in her house a few months ago. While visiting her one day, I saw that she'd taken some of the old windows and hung them on her walls. They looked awesome and rustic and I asked if she had any more. Yup.

So I took these...

and turned them into these...

I still have one more window to fill and currently have a watercolor in the works starring my youngest son as a toddler staring out the window with his gray, fuzzy friend, Mr. Trey-Trey.

The thing is, a few days ago I was finally able to open my laptop and continue the mountains of work I'd been neglecting. I guess time does heal wounds, or at least numbs them enough to help us continue on. And cathartic art projects help too.

I have Trey's collar hanging above my desk and I'm still prone to weeping if I sit and think too long about his soft ears or his waggling tail (there may or may not be tears wetting my keyboard right now), but at least I'm able to get back to work and do things like signing my three book contract *damp grin* and editing, editing editing.

P.S. Since things have been generally sucky, I did finally manage to get the free book MONARCH out to the respective winner but I did it without any fanfare (I haven't been in the mood for fanfare). In fact I simply drew the name out of a hat (a black fedora I borrowed from my long-haired preteen), contacted the winner and sent it to them in the mail. Sorry, folks, the contest is over. There was a lucky winner who is now happily caressing their not so new, well-loved copy. :)


  1. I'm so sorry about your doggie.

    I still miss my best little buddy everyday and he's been gone for nearly two years.

    I think your pictures are awesome!

  2. I'm sorry about Trey. It's painful when you lose a pet. I'm sorry.

  3. christauna I was so sorry about Trey----he really was a sweet dog. I still think of Ramses and I suppose Chester has become a good companion for me but still they all become a part of you don't they? I will be looking around for you for another dog. You said you liked non puppies best am I right? Very wise Christauna---VERY wise.

  4. Oh Christauna. I am so very sorry for you loss. I suppose that is one of the reasons I have not yet chosen to embrace a dog in our family...they just become part of your lives and you never stop missing them when they pass! Heck, our family still misses Otis and he died, what, 20years ago??
    On a positive note, those window projects are BEAUTIFUL. Love love love!

  5. I'm so sorry about Trey. Last winter I had to put my Buster Brown (yellow lab) down. Even though we have a new puppy now (Rascal) my boys still miss Buster. We all do. They are family, that's the reason we get them in the first place. I do want to tell you the windows though looked like great therapy, they are beautiful! Enjoy them. :-)

  6. Christauna, I am soooo sorry. It is so devastating that I am like Natalie, and scared to even bring a little dog into our family. I got one of the windows too and haven't known what to do with them until now! You are so creative and they look amazing! I especially like the one with all the kids! Knew I should have taken that one....ha ha, kidding. Like I could make it look like yours does.

  7. Hey, Christauna,

    I have a Mini-Schnauzer, too. Her name is Cassie, after one of the characters in my first novel.

    I'm so sorry to hear about Trey.


  8. I'm so sorry about your dog. That's such a hard loss.


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