There are many ways to grieve the loss of a pet. Some people choose to grieve until they’re ready for another one. I prefer to cry on the fur of a new puppy.
I knew it was time when I woke up Sunday morning to an eerily quiet house with an Isaiah-sized vacuum. It was too much for my soul to bear. After experiencing the grace of worship, I broke down when I returned to an empty home. I had spotted a puppy on the Humane Society website with that certain look in his eyes. Hours later, he was in my arms.
I’ve named him Obadiah after the minor prophet whose name means “servant or worshiper of the Lord.” He’s a four-month-old Labrador/Hound mix who weighs about 25 pounds, but he will quickly grow into his name. In the meantime, he’s all puppy. He runs with an awkward gate and trips over his long tail. He tumbles about the yard and chews on everything in sight and tries so hard to be a good boy, especially when I scold him for peeing in my house again.
Last night I scooped up Obadiah on my lap because pretty soon he will be too big to fit. As I cuddled him, I started telling stories about his big brother Isaiah and the tears flowed freely. Obadiah nuzzled under my neck, burrowed his head under my chin, and started to lick the tears off my cheeks.
I think I will take the risk of love again.