Journey from Loss to Love: Part 2 Adjusting to an Empty House

Posted by Gail Michel on

This is part two of the journey my boyfriend and I are experiencing as we prepare to bring a new fur-baby back into our lives. Leave your feedback and experiences in the comments on your journey to a new fur-baby.

We had a beautiful service for Otto, had him cremated and brought him home. We placed his remains on a couch table next to his crate with a glass image of him.  

The house is silent. No tick-tick of nails on the wood floors, no terrible gas, no frequent trips outside. Nothing.  Where do we go from here?  Since Otto was so sick, caring for him was all encompassing and now there was all of this "free time".  I to this day still look for him at times expecting him to pop out of his crate to say "hi".  For at least a month, we continued to wash and fill his water bowl.  There are a few nuggets of food there as well for him.

For as much as we are on the same page for many things, my boyfriend and I grieve much differently.  I wanted to put some of his things away so I would not continue to think I needed to walk him or do one of my many daily tasks.  The simplest thing, his dog gate, became an object of argument.  He needed to have it in place, where I wanted to move it aside.  With the in place, I would continue to look for Otto and panic a bit when I couldn't find him.  His bed is still next me on the floor and I sometimes lean over to check on him.  

The silence is so deafening to me that I immediately felt the need to fill it with a new dog.  That somehow this new dog would help me heal, fill the hole that is now in my world and in my heart.  I logically understand this is not the way to grieve but if there is a dog, maybe Otto will be there.  I would show pictures of dogs to my boyfriend on Petfinder asking him his opinion.  Tears would come to his eyes, I was pushing him too much.  I just had to give him some time and some space to grieve as he needed to heal.  


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  • You can’t replace Otto. Otto was first, special, loving, wonderful and rewarding. You may find another furry friend but the new friend will not be an Otto. Heal and understand that your new furry friend will be a new adventure. Otto is forever now, in your hearts and minds.

    Frederick Michel on

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