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Fourteen

6 Oct

Thirteen is supposed to be a harbinger of bad luck. I’ve never had much trouble with it, though. My unlucky number is 14. All my dogs have died the year they turned fourteen. Although Lucy seemed like she might escape the 14-year curse, she didn’t. I lost her on Wednesday.

The house feels pretty empty now and I find myself at loose ends with no one to take out for a potty break between Zoom classes. I catch myself talking to her, saying the funny sayings and singing the funny songs that were our norm. I walk into a room and look around to find her, then I remember.

Yesterday morning, the vets office called to let me know that her remains had arrived and I could pick them up whenever I felt ready. I walked over after my last class ended. The box with her ashes seemed so small and it came with a flat box that contained a clay cast of her paw. I felt the tears well as I was handed the package. I didn’t dare open the package until I was home

Lucy has joined Clara, Louie, and Fiona on the shelf in the living room. Her scent still permeates her spots in the house. In a few weeks, I might wash her blankets, but I’m not quite ready to do that yet. I need to let it linger in the house a little longer and take some solace from it.

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