You are very courageous to write this article, Linda,not just for facing the lacerating pain of love and loss, but also because there will inevitably be those who dismiss your loss when compared with what they might consider more” important” loss such as the loss of a child or spouse.

But always and in every interaction and thought we must remember these three words: Love is love. By writing of your love and your loss you will keep your loved one from blurring in your memory. And incredible as it may seem, it will get easier and even sweeter to remember, with the healing passage of time.

To have loved as intensely as you have is a gift not always granted to others. Honor the gift, honor the memories, and continue with your brave quest.

Somewhere at some as yet unknown time another precious pet is waiting to become your loving companion on this difficult journey. You are a person who knows the value of love. What a wonderful home you will provide for a new, loving friend, when the time arrives.

Deborah Barchi has recently retired from her career as a librarian and now has time to read, explore nature, and write poetry and essays.