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November 1, 2016

Laughing About Crying

Crying is all right in its way while it lasts. But you have to stop sooner or later, and then you still have to decide what to do.  ― C.S. Lewis, The Silver Chair I'm currently working on a 5+ week streak of  crying at least once each day. I only wish I had this kind of consistency and productivity in all areas of life. The tears are cathartic, but they can easily overwhelm me if I let them.  That's why I created my own game show called What Makes Me Cry Today!? It's a good way to cry when I need to, but it also lets me laugh at the new and interesting things which I've discovered bring me to tears.
Rhodesian Ridgeback, Chicago, Marking Our Territory

Crying is all right in its way while it lasts. But you have to stop sooner or later, and then you still have to decide what to do. C.S. Lewis, The Silver Chair

I’m currently working on a 5+ week streak of  crying at least once each day. I only wish I had this kind of consistency and productivity in all areas of life. The tears are cathartic, but they can easily overwhelm me if I let them.  That’s why I created my own game show called What Makes Me Cry Today!? It’s a good way to cry when I need to, but it also lets me laugh at the new and interesting things which I’ve discovered bring me to tears.

My brother running along the beach with Penny? Cue the waterworks and the laugh track.

Rhodesian Ridgeback, Chicago, Marking Our Territory Penny sleeping in the same sunlight where Eko once rested his head? Tears and chuckles. Rhodesian Ridgeback, Chicago, Marking Our Territory Rhodesian Ridgeback, Chicago, Marking Our Territory Our Ridgeback pal, Pheobe, making a silly face like Eko used to make? OH COME ON, REALLY!? Well, I don’t make the rules, I just play by them. A cry and a laugh it is. Rhodesian Ridgeback, Chicago, Marking Our Territory No, you cannot be serious. I am at the supermarket walking past red apples and I’m crying because it brings up a memory?? This game isn’t fair. I wipe my eyes and grin. Rhodesian Ridgeback, Chicago, Marking Our Territory A trip to the beach when the wind blows like the day it did when Eko died? I’m sure it’s just going to be tears. I worry it might only be tears this day and every day. But then my little Wile E. Coyote dives into the frigid water thinking this will finally be the day she catches the kite surfer. I can’t help but laugh hysterically. Rhodesian Ridgeback, Chicago, Marking Our Territory So these are my days. I cry, I laugh, and we carry on chasing the things we may never catch. The tears slow a bit more each day, but the laughter and our new adventure have only just begun.

Comments for Laughing About Crying

  1. fran welch says:

    Will, u r so right. U have so many more laughs because that is Penny. While i know ur love for Eko will always be a place in ur heart n thoughts. U will see things he did everyday to remind u. Penny, however, will be there to give u unconditional love n make u laugh in days ahead. I m glad u r finding laughter in ur days. Love u all

  2. meANXIETYme says:

    Both the crying and the laughing are cathartic. I hope each day brings a little more laughter and a little less crying. Even so, your grief is your own, and your timetable is personal. Grieve the way you need to, for the amount of time you need to.

    Thanks for continuing to share all of this with us. It reminds me (and others) that grieving is normal and natural, and my out-of-the-blue weeping over a wind-chime (from my mom, who passed earlier this year) is just how life goes.

  3. good to read that the laughter is coming back more each day just a little. Give penny a hug all the from the Netherlands. Keep on doing the good work!

  4. Connie Taylor says:

    Will, Each tear that falls tells of the love Eko gave to you, Emily and Penny. I’m glad you can see more joy than sorrow with each passing day. Penny’s infectious attitude will get you through this, along with Emily’s steadfast love. ❤️

  5. Ellen Quilty says:

    Grief is a roller coaster.One minute you have a little smile and then you dissolve into tears again .When I lost my dad a dozen years ago I went through the same thing.Everytime I saw someone who looked even remotely like him I would start to cry.When I went down to the beach house which he loved and looked out at the dune deck where he always sat looking at the ocean-tears again.This went on for quite a while but eventually it started to get better.Losing someone you love so much as you did leaves such a big hole which never closes up completely but it does become less painful over time.Hang tight,this a process which has to take its own time.
    Just wondering-does Penny know what she will do with this windsurfer when she catches him?

  6. Michael Bondor says:

    “There’s more room in a broken heart.”

    Will, thank you again for being willing to lay it all out in writing. You help everyone who reads you. You bring a larger heart to my life, anyway.


  7. TheRidgebackLife says:

    Looks like the kite surfer is enjoying his taunting of Penny. Sounds kinda like what Penny used to do to Eko! Glad to see the healing process is starting, Will. We all go into such dark places when we lose our best furry companions. I still get choked up when talking about Poco and that’s been almost six years now, but more often than not, the smiles overwhelm me. You’re on the right path.

  8. KDKH says:

    Thank you for your honesty about the grief that we feel after the loss of our beloved pets. So many people don’t understand and want us to suck it up so they don’t feel uncomfortable. Grieving is natural and often Intense as you describe. I’m sorry that you are at this place emotionally right now, but thank you for being honest about it. Showing it’s normal is good for us all.

  9. Devine-Brownie says:

    Making the decision to have a dog –
    it´s to decide forever
    to have your heart go walking
    around outside your body.
    -Elizabeth Stone (modified)-

    We are not able to protect…we can only take a brief look.
    And LOVE makes a red apple to a special one.
    Lots of kisses

  10. Emmadog says:

    Those tears will keep coming for a very long time, and often when least expected. It is important to be able to laugh and smile, and to have Penny to help you out with her silliness.

  11. lynne powers says:

    Nothing will ever be the same, but you are more able to love, thanks to Eko. And thanks to Penny, you’re more able to laugh. Life is a circle. Death is imminent. Allow yourself time to grieve, the rest will fall into place.

  12. Yes, tears are cathartic and soon there will be more laughs than water works. I think tears and laughter are the universe’s way of reminding us we are alive and that there’s a whole planet out there for us to explore. Wishing you and your side-kick loads of exploration.

  13. Shalini says:

    You should take as much time and play as many games as you need to 🙂

  14. It’s so funny—I modeled Phoebe’s upbringing after your posts about Penny: Loose lead walking, meeting new pups, the toys Penny liked, her bed, when to let her stay home alone outside the crate, even when she got spayed! That Phoebe reminds you of Eko, even for a few seconds, makes my heart smile. Eko the prince. Keep crying and laughing! We’re here with you. Lots of love to you guys!

  15. I have to admit that it happens to me till today… even after 7 years. I’ve found a modified sock today we used as Frosty hurt his dew claw… nuclear meltdown in my heart…
    It’s goo dto hear that between the tears is a smile like a sun ray between dark clouds… I guesses it that Penny can help your broken hearts with being Penny… hugs to you all…

  16. T&S says:

    Eko had a great life, so many adventures, so much love… I dare to say: wow, what a life! Think of that when it gets hard.
    Now you have his little sister to walk with you through life and give her opportunity for some new adventures and a great life like Eko had.
    Funny how they learn from each other when they live together (would be nice if that were only good things ). And you will always see a little bit of Eko in Penny.
    to Penny, Emily and you!

  17. I love this game! Plus I can’t wait till you don’t play it any more ever again.

    Love and licks,

  18. Jo Rhodes says:

    Your writing has made us truly love your family. We’ve been watching older post videos and laughing and crying with you too. Today we have small breed playtime right near The beautiful (mumble) building in Boston! I’m annoyed that you guys were this close to our place,and I didn’t see you! My boys weren’t born when you boys were here. Istill smile because we’ve shared a spot on the planet!
    * the Christian Science Center
    Much love with hands and paws to steady you.
    Jo, Sam and Dean

  19. Kismet says:

    That’s really cruel of your brother to wear a shirt with “ND”, No Dog.

  20. Karen in Oregon says:

    I lost a super little poodle in 2011, and still get worked up to this day! I never know what will set me off, but I can say that I also smile while I cry. It’s normal.

    And I love that you call Penny Wile E. Coyote! I call our second ridgie that too. She is a PUNK!

  21. Eve says:

    I too believe that laughter is the best medicine for helping to heal a broken heart as it helped me when my hubby died. Good to hear that Penny is the best helper she can be! I love to watch the chase of my dog after the squirrels in the yard and then she’ll turn and look at you satisfied that they are gone now. Love your blog always!

  22. Fozziemum says:

    Crying is indeed cathartic..but the triggers are so weird sometimes..it really amazes me what connections we have buried so deeply in our psyche..i told my surgeon the reason my nose was so badly deviated was due to having more snotty crying than ever before..laughing at crying ..i told our vet i could not lose Doc yet as my nose op needed to heal..more laughing at crying…i am glad you are slowly moving through this time with some humor..it sucks and any coping mechanism is welcomed..breathe..move..laugh..hugs to you all xx

  23. I know that game and still play it 3 years later. So sorry for the loss of your beloved furry family member!

  24. Ogee says:

    There’s no rushing grief – or healing. The tears just mark the journey. Hugs to you all.

  25. Tears are always right around the corner….moments hit unexpectedly….I just move through them. I have my previous cat’s collar in a drawer in my dresser and I rarely go into that drawer for anything – when I do, that loss – which was 20 years ago – hits me all over again. The day will truly come when you won’t think about it as much – I can promise you that much – but when it DOES pop into your mind, it still makes your heart ache. You’re heading closer to the light of “happy” though Will – Penny and Emily are moving with you. You’re NEVER alone.


  26. fredrieka says:

    It’s a rollercoaster ride. Last summer when we lost 3 in a row I thought I was over it. Just recently my husband and I discussed how we have been slowing down. First, we blamed it on age. Being we are both in our 60’s . As we talked we realized we both were dealing with depression. The loss took a toll. Keep the feelings flowing let it be what it is.

  27. René L. Hester says:

    Well…I replied the first I heard of the loss of Mr. Eko, & I’ve cried every time I’ve read your posts, sometimes not being able to finish. Of course, I’ve not cried every day, but I know your pain, that pain, all too well. And, on my flight to visit family this weekend, I had to read your prior post to this current, because I wanted the details, in hopes of learning something I could watch for in my Chi-Chi girl, in case what happened to Eko, I could learn, understand. To my dismay, I wept in my seat, still at a loss for the senseless death of dear Eko, and still no answers. Another reason/justification for considering my pups(past & present) a member of my family. I’m thankful everyday for my fur baby, as she’s my present day gift of life that brings me more joy than I could possibly imagine. The thought of ever losing her hit me like a ton of bricks when I heard about your losing Mr. Eko, but I wouldn’t have it any other way! My life is enriched 100-fold with her to share it with, so I’m trying to make everyday count, because if/when the time comes, I can only hope my memories with her help me through the tough times. Take care Will, & it must be of some comfort to have Emily & Penny to help you cope. : )

  28. I’m still crying over my loss as well. Hang in there!

  29. ((((hugs))))))) you will never, ever, ever not cry (I don’t mean that in a bad way), when I lost my first cat, “my soul kitty” whom I had 18 years…….he passed in 2007………to this day, if I allow myself I can cry with the same raw emotion as I did the day it happened. There is nothing wrong with crying……nothing at all……it DOES get easier……….. It doesn’t mean you can’t be happy…..you are finding happiness, you will continue to experience happiness……but you will always still have a tinge………..it’s like that when we lose anyone we loved………it should be……..and it’s ok!!!! Life is STILL GOOD!!! We love you!!!!!

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