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Griffin's Journey
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Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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15 February 2021 - 3:02 pm
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These comments are so eloquent and heartfelt.   Can't  take the grief away, but can certainly  bring you comfort in knowing how you and Griffin touched so many lives in so many different ways, past, present  and future💖💖💖   

And now, another smile making photo from our smiling Griffin 

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Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

New York, NY
Member Since:
24 March 2020
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15 February 2021 - 3:19 pm
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I have felt the love in these posts and with some of my Tripawds family checking in on me - thank you! sp_hearticon2  I am by no means fine, but I am doing better than I expected.  It was just Griffin and me, so the house feels very empty and quiet, and I have no one to talk to (Griffin was a great listener!).  I made a promise to Griffin that I would not hole up in the house all day, so I've made it a point to get outside for a long walk each day, even if it is just to run errands.  The biggest struggle for me is time on my hands and lack of routine.  I'm working very few part-time hours right now, and until I find a full-time job, being home alone all day sucks.  I'll be attending a virtual orientation session on Thursday to volunteer with a local dog rescue.  I'm not at all ready to foster, but I do have a car to help with transport (rare in NYC!) and I'm pretty good with administrative tasks, so hopefully having something meaningful to do will add structure to my days.  My neighbors are amazing at checking in (and feeding me!) and one of my best friends is coming next weekend to stay for a week, so I'm in good hands.  Please keep the happy memories/stories of Griffin coming - they really do make my heart smile.

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This was taken on February 7 - Griffin loved the snow!

Griffin lived an amazing life for 11 years! Diagnosed with osteosarcoma on March 17, 2020, Griffin's right forelimb was amputated on April 2, 2020. Ten days later he was running and playing fetch! Lung metastasis discovered in July 2020 did not slow down Griffin and he lived joyfully for the next 7 months, passing peacefully at home on February 11, 2021. https://griffin.tripawds.com



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15 February 2021 - 3:31 pm
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I'm glad you said that Stacy because I was going to mention shelter work. Helping those in need will help your heart some and we both know Griffin would totally approve! 

I myself have been having a hard time coming out of my shell but it is for different reasons. I am glad you are walking and getting exercise. It is also good stress relief. We had a bunch of snow after 2 days of ice last week and I have been out 3 days either removing ice from the fleet at work or snow blowing our driveway. I feel better today than I have in a month. Fresh air, exercise, sore muscles, and a smile on my face. I had to refrain from throwing a snowball at my boss, hahah!

I also cook. I love cooking but unfortunately I also like eating. I have to be careful because I am hooked on making bread and pasta right now, lmao 🙂 

One day at a time, one hour at a time, maybe a minute at a time sometimes. We are all here. Please be kind to yourself. Do something for yourself. Even if it's a bubble bath, candles, some soothing music and a book. Meditation helps too, although I will be the first to say I have a hard time setting that time aside for me but it really does help.

Sending you a big squeezing hug sp_hearticon2

Hugs,

Jackie, David, Bo, Andy, Oscar, Phoebe, and the coolest feral tripawd kitty Huckleberry

Huckleberry's Blog

Virginia




Member Since:
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15 February 2021 - 4:26 pm
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  And here's another smile maker....the warm fuzzy kind that lights  up your heart.  This is pure love....one heart kind of pure love💖💖💖

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Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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15 February 2021 - 4:43 pm
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OOOOOOOMMMMMMDDDDDDDD!    I just went over to rhe thread Michelle started about taking plenty of pictures etc.  And  lo and behold........

Now make no mistake about  it, Griffin had his paw all over this "coincidence " that is NOT a coincidence!!   Nothing is happenstance  when it comes to something  like this!!   It's a hello from Giffin!!  Love how this unfolded.  Clearly this is one of Griffin's favorites too!!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

On The Road


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15 February 2021 - 10:08 pm
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That photo of Griffin in the snow is just beautiful. It really stands out among all the others you took. It's almost as if he is seeing right through time, if that makes any sense.

Stacy you are such a kind hearted person, and clearly you attract great people into your life. I'm so glad those nearby are able to be with you during such a tough time so that you are not alone. Griffin is watching out for you.

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene
tripawds.com | tripawds.org | bemoredog.net | triday.pet

Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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16 February 2021 - 10:14 pm
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You will feel the "Zen  of Griffin" as you walk the same path the two of you shared so often.  He is in every song  the birds sing and in every kiss of rhe wind as it brushes across your cheek.

     

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

New York, NY
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11 March 2021 - 5:39 am
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It has been one month since I said goodbye to Griffin.  The sharp sting of grief has mellowed to an ache that has burrowed deep into my bones.  I still look before moving the ottoman.  I still catch myself automatically soothing, “You’re okay” when I hear a car backfire outside.  I still feel disoriented when I wake up without a solid warmth snugged up against my side.  My days feel adrift without our routine and the house is so very quiet.  I miss Griffin tremendously and I expect that I always will.

From Griffin’s diagnosis to his surgery through five different chemotherapy protocols to the very end, I was grieving.  Not every day and not all the time, but the anticipatory grief of losing him was pretty consistent and every oncology appointment that never resulted in good news brought me low again.  Each time I cycled through denial, anger, bargaining, and depression a little quicker, trying desperately to stay in a positive mindset knowing there would be plenty of time for tears later.  And now it is time for me to practice acceptance.  My beloved boy is gone, and nothing will bring him back to me.

My very wise 14-year old niece shared this quote with me: “As long as there is love and memory, there is no true loss” (Cassandra Clare).  One of the best things I did after Griffin passed was to ask everyone to share their favorite memories of him.  From family and friends, to colleagues at schools where Griffin accompanied me, to staff at the hospital that treated Griffin and the hospital where we volunteered, to my neighbors – over 100 people shared stories about Griffin.  I knew most of the stories, but the new ones were lovely surprises, as were some photos and videos that I had not previously seen.  Each story affirmed what I already knew – Griffin was an amazing soul who touched so very many people with his joy, his gentleness, his empathy, his silliness, and most of all, with his capacity for unconditional love.  Reading those shared memories is a balm to my aching heart and the document into which I have compiled them all will be a treasured legacy.

It has been one month since Griffin passed and while I feel sad every day, I am doing okay.  I go for daily walks in our favorite park.  I attended an individual therapy session and a pet loss support group meeting.  I started volunteering with a local dog rescue processing adoption applications and completed initial steps to become a volunteer with two other organizations.  I am steadily working through a list of spring cleaning tasks.  I have buckled down to find a full-time job.  I am reading a ton of books.

One of those books was The Beauty of What Remains: How Our Greatest Fear Becomes Our Greatest Gift by (Rabbi) Steve Leder.  He writes, “We lose so much love to death, and if that love was real and deep, the grief is real and deep.  Grief is not a race to be won or an illness to be cured.  To deny grief its due is to deny love.”  I am very lucky to have the support of so many and no one would question my need to grieve, but somehow reading that passage really made plain to me in a way that I did not fully understand before that love and grief go hand in hand, mirroring each other in their depths.  It is comforting to think that when my grieving is over, the beauty of our love will remain.

On a practical level, I know that how long or how much I grieve will not change the fact that Griffin is no longer by my side.  And so from a self-preservation perspective, I try to focus on gratitude rather than sadness.  I am grateful for so many things about how Griffin passed – that he did so peacefully at home, that he was not in pain or scared, and that it was so clearly his time to go.  I am grateful for the 11 years that I shared with Griffin, and considering we were rarely apart even when I was working, it probably adds up to far more time than most people get to spend with their pups.  I am grateful for Griffin's magic, as evident in the outpouring of stories, and that I lived in the presence of that magic up close each day.  I am grateful that Griffin inspired me to work towards a healthier lifestyle and made even the bitterly cold morning walks fun.  I am grateful for all that Griffin taught me – patience, kindness, being fully present, determination, curiosity, and finding joy every day.  Griffin truly was the sunshine of my life and I will love him forever.

One day I will create a video to celebrate all of Griffin’s life, but in the meantime, I hope you enjoy these photos that each represent a year, from 2010-2021, that Griffin spread his sunshine to all of us.  Thank you all for the love and support that you gifted us throughout Griffin’s journey.  May his memory be a blessing.

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Griffin lived an amazing life for 11 years! Diagnosed with osteosarcoma on March 17, 2020, Griffin's right forelimb was amputated on April 2, 2020. Ten days later he was running and playing fetch! Lung metastasis discovered in July 2020 did not slow down Griffin and he lived joyfully for the next 7 months, passing peacefully at home on February 11, 2021. https://griffin.tripawds.com

Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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11 March 2021 - 8:51 am
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Griffin's Magic"   That, in part, really does sum up Griffin.  He had a way of touching each of us in such a magical way.  And yes, he was, indeed your  "sunshine"....and he sprinkled his warm bright light into the hearts of everyone he met.

Every post, every video, every photo embodied  everything that made Griffin such a magical Soul.  I ALWAYS looked forward to your posts and fetting to walk along aide of you two on your adve tires to the park.  Seeing Griffin soooo Happy jist "being" and watching  him soak in his Zen with the birds and Nature and wind blowing  thru his fur.....such beautiful  memories.

The quotes you shared were lovely.  And the definition of "dog"...spot on

I know I speak for everyone here.  We think about you and Griffin everyday,  There is a definitive  void here on the site, yet.the lessons, the insight, the knowledge gained because  you and Griffin were in our lives will always be quite legendary here .  Griffin made the most of his earth time in so many ways..ways that have no ending..

I know it's  not easy being here today, or any of the other times during your grief.  Yet, like always, you are sharing wisdom that helps others. 

There could not ever have been a more compatible team born to be together then you and Griffin. He and you had such purpose on so many levels.   You are each other's twin soul, parallel souls who were able to recognize  your gift of mission and share that with the world.

It was such a great idea to ask people to share happy memories of Griffin people. That is definitely what he would want being the  "Mr. Sunshine" that he is. If you are up to it, I would love to hear a couple of the ways that he touched lives, especially the scenarios that were  "news" to you.

Thank you for being you💖💖

Love and light

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too  !

PS.  That puppy picture is cutest thing ever!  And you could see his legs getting longer and longer and he became taller and taller in each picture year after year.😉

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

On The Road


Member Since:
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11 March 2021 - 10:38 am
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((((hugs))))) Stacy, it's so good to hear from you. I saw your blog post then I saw this and knew it would be good. And it IS.

You captured so perfectly the essence of what loving another sentient being means  to us when they leave this world before we do. Like that quote that goes something like 'when you love hard, you grieve hard,' our heartache is the price we pay for walking this world together with a special person or animal. Choosing to focus on the gratitude for that relationship, instead of our sadness, is what pulls us out of the depths of our darkest days. You are mastering that art of healing. Griffin is so proud.

Such beautiful times with a beautiful dog. Thank you for giving us that timeline in photos of the life of one very special pup. What a sweetheart. 

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene
tripawds.com | tripawds.org | bemoredog.net | triday.pet

Member Since:
4 April 2019
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11 March 2021 - 2:07 pm
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Hey Stacy,

I was just thinking about you and Griffin.  I turned to look at my tripawds calendar, and there is Griffin standing there smiling at me in the month of March.

You are right about the sharp pain turning into an ache.  I really don't know if it gets better, or if we just learn to live with it.  Brownie is still the first thing I think about when I open my eyes in the morning, and the last thing I think about when I close my eyes at night.

You wrote Griffin is no longer by your side.  Just because you can't see him does not mean he is not there.  If you can feel him, he is there.

Karen Anderson the author of "The Amazing Afterlife of Pets" has a free pet loss app.  I think it would really be a comfort to you.  It helped me and so many others.

Hang in there.  I know it is tough at timessp_hearticon2

It is great that you are volunteering with rescues!  Griffin is proud!

My Beautiful Beloved Brownie was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma on February 26, 2019.  With all odds against him he lived an additional one year and eight days with amputation, love, and prayer.  I was honored to be his mom, and I have never been so proud!  He will live forever in my Heart!

Brownie Bubba Bell

04/01/2007 - 03/05/2020

"March Saint"

Member Since:
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15 March 2021 - 11:54 pm
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Stacy, that was truly wonderful. Thank you for sharing so openly and honestly. Hugs.

Member Since:
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17 March 2021 - 1:23 pm
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That puppy picture of Griffin - aaawwww so adorable. They truly are the best friends and care for us more than we care for ourselves. I am happy to hear you are finding peace and gratitude and that you have support.

Thank you for sharing Griffin with us. He has been my guide and still is. sp_hearticon2

New York, NY
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24 March 2020
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3 May 2021 - 5:21 pm
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I marked a few one year anniversaries recently: March 17th – Griffin’s osteosarcoma diagnosis, April 2nd – Griffin’s amputation surgery, and May 2nd – Griffin's first time as a tripawd walking to the end of our park route on his own.  He’s been gone 81 days and the moments when I smile at the thought of Griffin far outweigh the moments of sadness.  I still unexpectedly tear up when talking about him to strangers, but my heart is lighter and my new normal doesn’t feel quite so new any longer.

As I mentioned in my last post, I began volunteering with Rescue City, a NYC dog rescue organization.  I am on the adoptions team, processing applications.  I also began fostering with them and welcomed Nori the Airedale Terrier (mix?) into my home last weekend.  I’ll share her story in a separate thread.

I know I don’t post on Tripawds much but I do check in pretty much every day.  I know that once you join the Tripawds family, you are forever a member.  I will always be grateful for the support, friendship, and strength that I found here.  I truly hope that Griffin’s story is helpful to others and that his magic continues to pay it forward. sp_hearticon2

Griffin lived an amazing life for 11 years! Diagnosed with osteosarcoma on March 17, 2020, Griffin's right forelimb was amputated on April 2, 2020. Ten days later he was running and playing fetch! Lung metastasis discovered in July 2020 did not slow down Griffin and he lived joyfully for the next 7 months, passing peacefully at home on February 11, 2021. https://griffin.tripawds.com

Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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3 May 2021 - 8:33 pm
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Oh Stacy, we are so glad to hear from you.  Of the "anniversaries" you mentioned, the one that gave us a glimpse into how remarkable  a Dog Soul Griffin is.......the way he rapidly recovered and reclaimed his routine  walks to the park. That was just the beginning  of  how astounded I was that he regained so much of his athleticism and zest for life so quickly!  

Griffin is ALWAYS here with us on this site.   We  not only reference his rapid fire recovery, but the way he, and you, touched all his extended  family and friends with his unstoppable "Be More Griffin" joy and limitless happiness 😊  You two fought hard, played hard, loved hard....all while teaching us so many life lessons about hope and living in the moment.  

We are furever grateful💖

The Rescue is ao incredibly  lucky to have you kn their team.  And to know you are fostering a licky dog name Nori makes me soooo happy...for voth of you!  I k ow it has to help fill the void, as well as bring you some joy and smiles as you help Nori  become  a cery good Nori.

Okay, okay....I'll say it!!!   Hoping for a ,foster fail!!!  There, I said it!!   Will look for your other thread and hope to see some pics and learn more about this Nori.

Lots of love and gratitude to you Stacy💖

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

PS....always makes me smile when I see Griffin's banner😊

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

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