It's been 21 days since my cockapoo dog, Bracken, crossed the Rainbow Bridge on May 17, 2020. But it still doesn't seem real to me.
Bracken was such a huge presence in my life for nearly fourteen years and the place he filled so completely is a vast emptiness now.
I'm crying less, that is true, but somehow, missing him gets worse. So many things throughout the day remind me of Bracken. So many times I start to turn to say something to him, or do something for him . . . but then I remember he is not here.
I would give anything to have him back.
That is where I am now . . . longing, longing for Bracken.
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I understand the feeling. I hear a noise and expect it is my Brown Cat coming into the office to ask to get on my lap. Whoever your closest companion is becomes such a part of your life that life seems vacuous after they are gone. I still have a Great Dane and two cats, but my Brown was the senior animal and even the other animals act strangely for now. Brown Cat was the one that was with me every minute of the day if I was in the house, and it's as you describe, his "huge presence" belied his small size.

Bracken must have been like that, the small dog who was engaged with you all the time. That doesn't go away quickly, and indeed, I don't think it ever goes away entirely. Once you have loved a being like that, it's rather for life and until his future form comes to refill that void, there will always be that feeling where movement or some difference in the room, catches your eye, and for a split second, you feel a feeling of normalcy thinking it's him. It's a comfort that becomes a feeling of letdown because then it sets back in that they are gone. 

Yes, we would give anything to have our special companion back. I've said it several times this week, and illogically wish it could happen. All of it will fade somewhat, it just takes time. If anything, my thoughts about that are that I don't want that to happen too quickly, because as long as we still hurt or long for them, their memory is fixed in our minds. Once the hurt and pain fade, we lose the part of them that still feels in the forefront of our consciousness. From that standpoint, I think "Just let it be there for now", while I still can have that longing to remind me of how I loved my little companion. Our longing to have them back is like a living memorial to a special friend.

I was told the other day that the pain and longing was worth the relationship I had with my cat. Bracken and the love you experienced with him is undoubtedly the same. Without the pain of separation, you could never have had the wonderful love you shared with him. Bracken, and my Brown Cat, were worth this pain we experience now.
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