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December 17, 2014

Exactly one year ago today, we made the painful-but-necessary decision to let Lilly go after a 693-day fight for her life. Our grief is better and totally NOT at the same time. Adding a puppy to our family didn’t magically make the grief disappear, but the other night, I realized how much more desperate I would feel without a new little canine friend at my side. 

obit photo

Truth? I’m still haunted by a few things from Lilly’s final day.  Things Tom and I don’t even discuss because it’s too painful. I’m getting better at focusing on her LIFE and not the day (and circumstances) of her death, but it isn’t easy.

I still cry … a lot.

I still miss her … desperately.

I still feel regret … not all the time, but often.

Lilly Tribute Video

The Grief Book

The first book based on Lilly’s life is written. I haven’t touched it since September when it came back from 7 or so beta readers. I need to make their revisions — some fairly significant, then I need to work out my production budget for editing, interior and cover designs, etc.

I had hoped to have it published by today, but raising Clover and working full-time … it is tough to eke out time for the book. I will set some goals for early 2015 and announce publication dates and plans as soon as I know how things look.


About the Author Roxanne Hawn

Trained as a traditional journalist and based in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, USA, I'm a full-time freelance writer for magazines, websites, and private clients. My areas of specialty include everything in the lifestyles arena, including health and home, personal finance and other consumer interests, relationships and trends, people and business profiles ... and, of course, all things pet related.

I don't just love dogs. I need them in my life. Seriously.

  1. Roxanne, I came across your blog while feeling my own desperation and sadness. Your words spoke to me. There is comfort in knowing you are not alone when going through a loss. Your Lilly was my Asia. I lost her last month and she too was my soul mate, the love of my life. I don’t know that I will ever have that connection again as I was closer to her than anyone. She was with me through many challenges and I always felt strong knowing she was there. We fought her cancer but unfortunately I could not save her. I cry every day. Christmas will be tough this year as I miss her terribly. I too have a new puppy same breed and although Asia is always with me in my heart and my thoughts, Rayne is helping me heal as I keep reminding myself this is her time now, she needs my attention. I feel your pain. Keep writing. Keep crying and laughing. Lilly will always be by your side. You can’t see her but I am sure you can feel her as I feel Asia beside me. It may not be in the same way, but Clover and Rayne will bring their own special gifts to this part of our life journey. Thoughts are with you, Michelle

  2. You said: I still cry … a lot.

    I still miss her … desperately.

    I still feel regret … not all the time, but often.

    It’s been two and a half years since we lost our 2-year-old. We adopted a dog, totally mixed up breeds, and it helped, but those three lines fit so well even today. My sister got a BC pup a few months ago, she’s about 3 months older than Clover. Although I’m in Iowa and they’re in TX she keeps in the loop on everything and that’s finally helping. I can see a picture of a border collie or BC pup without having my eyes well up. You’ll always miss your Lilly, but she’s so great for you guys and Ginko. <3

  3. The first year is always hard. You think: The first New Year’s Day without her; “The first Valentine’s Day; the first vacation; the first hike to her favorite spot; first time to …. without her. It’s really hard.

    It’s a little easier after the first year, when you don’t have all the “firsts” to get through. But you never forget.

    I’m glad you have Clover. May you come to peace and a restful heart in whatever time is right for you.

  4. I fully agree with you, I would have been worse without Tilde too. It is not something I expected to happen, but glad it worked out that way, although those anniversaries and the time – days, weeks? – around them are even more tough.

  5. I have been thinking about you and Tom and Clover and Lily and Ginkgo all day today. I am so sorry that the memories of her last day are so very painful. And at the same time, I don’t know anyone better suited to find the joy and the heart in the life well-lived. You gave her everything. You’re in my thoughts and in my prayers.

  6. I am so there with you, and am giving you virtual hugs. Those anniversaries are tough, and I am still haunted by some decisions I made, in spite of knowing, deep down, that I gave Frankie a great life. I guess it’s like only hearing the negative comments among a sea of praise…

    Setting your book aside is probably good for getting distance from a painful topic and making the manuscript. I’ll look forward to it…eventually. I’m not yet ready to go there myself.

  7. It’s been over a year since Sam passed away, and I have moments where it hits me so hard. Hugs to you.

    Monty and Harlow

  8. I agree with everything Ingrid said. Grief doesn’t “end,” especially with a heart dog (or person). You will always have the memories, and that can be painful and joyful at the same time. Clover is certainly not a replacement, but is a wonderful companion bringing much-needed joy to you and Tom, and to us through your blog and Facebook.

    I look forward to your book, as I knew Lily through your blog and in person… and grief is something I’ve had to deal with many times, but with the loss of my heart dog–oh my. And now Luna is going down that road. So your book will definitely help.

    Hugs and healing. xoxo

  9. Hugs to you on this anniversary. These first ones are the hardest. I’m glad you have Clover to soften the impact a bit, but it’s still not going to take away from the sadness, the regrets, and the memories. Some losses haunt us more than others. Amber died four years ago, and I still haven’t come to terms with some of the decisions I made about her care, and whether I gave up to soon. And even though I, too, have new feline loves in my life, I don’t think you ever stop missing the ones you’ve lost.

    I’m looking forward to your book. I have a feeling it’s going to be one that will heal a lot of hearts, and it will be yet another way for Lilly’s legacy to live on.

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