It doesn't feel like it's been a year, it feels like it's been 10. So much has happened in that amount of time that it literally feels like a lifetime ago. It's like life was going along with a certain trajectory, and then suddenly went way off course.
By certain measures, I'm in a much better position than I was before. My business was on the brink of failure last year and now we've grown in ways I never imagined. We have a store, a great group of people, international sales, all with no sign of slowing. My dog, relationship, house, and friends are all fantastic, but it still feels strangely empty.
I don't know why I thought I'd be over it by now, but I haven't gone a week this past year without crying and I still can't talk about it with strangers. It doesn't help that my life is constructed around him so completely.
But there has been growth. At least now the positive memories outweigh the sad ones. And now that he's not around to act like an ass and prove me wrong, he's reached a status of near saint-like proportions. I can extol his virtues for hours, tell the story of he chased the car thieves away at 2 am or how he fingered the one hoodlum who later went on to murder a homeless man (it was one of only two people in his life Paco could not settle down around), and now it's impossible for him to ruin the illusion by going into one of his crazy car ride fits (he's scream his fool head off and do handstands the closer we got to home), get amped up and embarrass me during a CGC demo, or be a jerk around another dog... now I understand how legends are made.
People want to know when we'll get another dog. The answer is, "I have no idea." We've done a great deal of dog shopping this year, have traveled long distances to see candidates, fostered one possibility, but nothing feels right. I think everyone has their own rate of recovery and we're just not there yet. I'm sure we'll know it when we see it, but that may only happen once we stop looking.
In the meantime I feel the best thing for me to do its continue building something positive in his memory.
RIP, little guy, I miss you every day.