Pet loss – Transmuting Grief into Gratitude. When our pets transition to the other side, we usually go through an extreme situation and are pushed way out of any comfort zone. Every case is different, as you and your pets are.
Let me share what I learned from the last months of my soul cat Flix’s life and his transition, and how I learned to transmute grief into gratitude.
Flix joined us at age 15 with his best friend Max, 12, soul cat, alpha cat, and the cover cat on my book Soul Cats.
We had 6.5 beautiful years that we could experience and master together. For some, it sounds short; for others, it seems long. Time is not that relevant. It’s the quality time we shared and how we could learn and grow together. Flix and I went through many challenges and the most beautiful moments I will never forget. You will read about this special boy a lot in my book.
In this article, let me share some additional insights on how to best transmute grief into gratitude. First of all, we start with tears…
Tears are a good thing!
I see tears as something positive. For me, everything my heart wants to articulate, and that’s way beyond our language, comes in tears. That’s usually a lot. I’m often near tears.
Many tears have flown after Flix passed away, especially in the first week. I can only recommend letting it happen. Let the tears flow. And please don’t care about anybody who wants you to stop crying. This isn’t helpful, and in fact, it is counterproductive.
My tears continued to flow when I took his ashes home and put them next to Max and Howy. Then it became a bit better. And it got better when we spent a few days on the Baltic Sea, and I got in touch with him and could talk to him on the other side. Everything was fine with him. He was free, reunited with old soul friends, with his previous human who passed away, and with Max and Howy, of course.
I know it is an advantage to be an animal communicator myself. Please ask for help and ask an animal communicator you trust to connect with your transitioned pet. You can also find more information here.
In addition, many tears have already flowed in the last few months of his life. Whenever we entered another phase, it became obvious that the goodbye was getting closer and closer. For instance, when he decided not to take his medication any longer. When he wanted the quantity of subcutaneous fluids reduced. And then when he canceled his fluids altogether. And again, a few weeks later, when he quickly became physically very weak and at the same time spiritually very big.
Today I am very grateful for this long, shared process of letting go. Flix and I needed this time. Now, I only fully understand Flix when he said last fall, no, I don’t want a feline friend anymore. We need this time together. It’s the final phase of my life. And he was right as he always was.
During the Twelfthtide of 2020/2021, he told me that he would be leaving the planet in 2021. I am very, very grateful for him sharing this with me. This way, I could shape this last phase of his life as consciously as possible.
Review memories and transform grief into gratitude.
Then, when the tears slowly dry up, it goes into the next mourning phase, processing memories. I created a photo book about Flix’s life with us in this phase. I had already done that for Max and Howy. Just the process of going through the many pictures and videos and creating the booklet was a very intense, emotional process that filled me with heartfelt gratitude and love for my beloved Flix.
When I was finished with the photo book, I had relived our history together. Of course, there were tears again. And that’s good. But then there were other tears. Tears of emotion and joy because I fondly remembered beautiful moments together. And more tragic moments too. Of the moments when we both grew beyond ourselves. Moments that transformed our lives forever. For the better. Because we both have learned to follow our soul’s path, we drew the courage to do this from the strongest of all energies–from love.
Every farewell is different. Always situational. And highly individual.
It is now my third farewell to a beloved cat, Max, in 2017, Howy in 2020, and Flix in 2021. Each time a completely different situation, a different process, and very different needs that the little tigers had in this situation. I tried to respond as best I could so they could each go their own way. Looking back, that was an extremely steep learning and development curve for me!
My key principles – Acceptance. Surrender. Trust. Love.
“It’s all said and done,” Flix said in an animal communication a few days before his death. Indeed, not all animals or humans can say that at this point. So, this is an immense gift. For that alone, I am infinitely grateful.
Because I know other situations where people were not allowed to clarify everything with their animals before they passed away. Because there was an operation from which the animal never woke up. Because the animal had disappeared and was found dead or never found at all. Because there was an accident, and the beloved animal passed away unexpectedly.
The grieving processes in such situations are entirely different because everything comes unexpectedly, and you didn’t have these parting and grieving steps, this phase that Flix and I have been going through for a good eight months. And then, with the sudden death of your pet, all the shock and sadness come at once and have to be mastered at once. In the aftermath. After the animal has embarked on its journey.
I imagine that to be many times worse than my situation with Flix. We knew since the third kidney crisis in October 2020 when we started the fluids that Flix was now in the last phase of his life.
My Flix journal was an excellent help to me.
No, I didn’t plan that. Like so many things, the idea of the mourning journal came to me intuitively. A few months ago, I was suddenly drawn to symbol cards. Exciting, because I had never worked with cards before. Then it was probably the right time for me to start.
I ordered a set of symbol cards and started experimenting with them for myself. Then I integrated the work with the symbol cards into my energetic work with my clients and their animals. The horse was so enthusiastic that it even asked for the cards at every appointment. It was fascinating to see the accuracy with which the symbol cards reflected the challenges we were working on.
So, I spontaneously started working with a card every morning after Flix’s death. The theme of the card then accompanied me through the day. Very helpful. Again and again, I reflected on the topic through the lens of the card. For example, the card said “lightness” or “gratitude” or “trust.” Amazing how valuable it is to reflect your grief through the lens of your daily theme. And I should reflect. That’s what Flix told me to do!
In the first few weeks, the cards said: “heart-to-heart connection,” “angels of light,” “healing on all levels” came up again and again. Then, things changed. Cards with the themes of “lightness,” “joy,” “abundance,” “manifestation,” and so on came much more often now.
After a month of intensive work, I changed the flow a bit. I continued to work with a card every day. But whether I will write directly about it every day, I will keep that open. Yes, that’s exactly how it feels. In any case, this work was an excellent barometer of my energy, which is now clearly increasing in frequency towards lightness.
My beloved Flix. Soul cat. Teacher. Pure love. Pure wisdom. Pure trust.
Our love extends far beyond this life. Our love existed before we met here. And we’ll meet again.
© Tamara Schenk | Soul Cats | https://soul-cats.com/
Image Source: Tamara Schenk