Category Archives: Sari

Three Months Ago


Today, 2/22, is the three month anniversary of the night Trudie died. I’ve been very sad this morning. I’m again grieving that the light of my life is now dark. The weather today is chilly and gloomy to boot (39 degrees F and raining). So I’ve been feeling and letting myself feel my sadness this day. I was told that anniversaries would trigger another “wave” of grief and it has. This too shall pass.

Sari Update

I talked to Charles a day or so ago and he says that Sari is settling right in on the farm. He says she shows a strong aversion to being in the house and she loves to romp around all their open land. I said that the aversion is probably due to all the time we had to keep her cooped up in our house while there was no one home.

He reports that they are extremely please that she gets along well their family members young and older alike. She gets along well with all their extended family who stop by to visit as well as all of their kids. He said she and the incumbent alpha-female have had a couple of fights. After the first fight one came away with a hurt paw and after the second fight the other came away with a hurt paw. So it seems that Sari and she have developed a mutual respect for each other and have called a truce. He said that Sari has formed friendships with younger males there and is just having a grand time.

I, in the mean time, am enjoying not having to worry about her needs for potty or companionship. The house does seem quieter and I’m adjusting fine to that.

I think we are both better off with this arrangement.

One less Volvo

I decided to donate the 940 to a charity. Selling it myself would have been a lot of hassle. And this way I’ll get some tax credit when I file next year. Also, the charity plans to give it to a staff member who is need of transportation. So it really is a win-win move. I’ve not decided what to do with the 240 yet.

Mission Trip

I’ve been accepted to go with a group of folks from my church to Bosnia Herzegovina. We will be there from Jul 27, 2008 to Aug 04, 2008. The details of the trip are here. You’ll be hearing more about it later…

Dog Free!

Sari’s new home

Yesterday I took Sari to Charles & Erline’s. They are the breeders that Trudie had found that concentrated on temperament rather than show ability. They had graciously agreed to take Sari back.

Good for her, good for me

It is really is the best for both of us. Sari will have other dogs to play with and people around her all day. I don’t have to keep relying on friends to come and let her out in the afternoon.

So it is the best for both of us. – And I am feeling a little sad. She was a pain in the ass to live with. She was demanding when I did come home. She wanted petting and she wanted petting NOW. But she was very cute and people were impressed at her beauty. And she had personality in spades. So I’ll probably miss her more than I anticipated.

What about Yoshi?

I’ve had a couple of people ask about what happened to our other male dog, Yoshi.

You probably remember that he was having a hard time getting around during the Summer. We were even talking about building a ramp off the back deck for him. His hind legs didn’t have much strength and we frequently had to help him get up by lifting his hips. Well, when Trudie came home from the physical rehab after her back surgery, she was using a walker. Trudie could get around but it was very tentatively. A time or two, Yoshi could not get out of Trudie’s way. He started having trouble getting up on his front legs too. He started to be a almost a danger to Trudie.

Trudie had a heart-to-heart talk with a dear friend and realized that it was time for Yoshi to be put to sleep. She realized that Yoshi had lived a long (he was over 12 years old) and had a happy life with us. I told Trudie that her safety was more important than keeping Yoshi. So I took him to our vet’s and they put him to sleep. That was a sad day too.

Slogging & Decisions

Fewer Things Accomplished

I’m surprised that I’m still suffering from “slogging.” This is what I call not getting as much done on the weekend like I used to. Each weekend I make a list of things I want to accomplish like I always have, but I’m finding that at the end I only have four or five things accomplished. I used to be able to knock out eight or 10 items each weekend. Not now.

I’m getting better. I am getting slowly better. Today, I did a dreaded, scary (for me), home-repair job. It wasn’t a big deal but it sat was square on top of one of my fear nerves. But I did it anyway. That’s the good news. The bad news is that I didn’t get much else done. I did get a pot of stew made and I vacuumed the house. I’m grateful that I was able to get done what I did.

Sari going back

I’ve been struggling with Sari. Three days a week I have time to be with her. But the four days a week I work, I hardly see her. And I still have to find someone to let her out for a potty break during the day.

This week I talked with some guys and now I’ve decided that the best thing for her and me is for her to go back to the breeders. I’ve talked with Charles and Erline and next Saturday I will take her back. It will be good for Sari because she will have a nice farm that she can run around in and other dogs to romp and play with. It will be good for me not to have to deal with the responsibility.

This has been a hard decision to make but I feel it is the right one. I know that I will initially be sad with her not around but I believe that I will soon be over it. Also, Erline said that Sari would not be going anywhere for a while so if I changed my mind, I could come and get her back. This is very gracious of them to offer this to me. I wasn’t ready a month ago to make this decision when I first blogged about it, but now I believe it the right time.

But What About the Dog?

The question of Sari

I said in my previous post that my five year old female Kuvasz, Sari, is my biggest challenge. She is very Kuvasz, very I-want-to-be-Alpha, and she can be very difficult. And she is very endearing. She looks at me with a joyous smile in those big brown eyes and I can’t help but smile back. I didn’t know that dogs could “smile” until Trudie introduced me to living with dogs.

I work a compressed work week. That means that I am lucky enough to have an employer that lets me work four 10 hour days. I am at work 7 AM to 6 PM Monday through Thursday. Add on an hour commute each way and add on an hour of gym time most days. That means I’m leaving the house at 5 AM most mornings. If I come straight home, I’m back by about 7 PM. That’s a long time for a dog to “hold it.”

Most nights, I want to attend a meeting that doesn’t get out until 9 PM. Then I get home about 9:45 and need to go straight to bed. I have different friends who have said that they can let her out in the late afternoon for which I am extremely appreciative. But I have no “quality” time with Sari for those four days.

The other three days, I’m able to be with her. I see her all day long, we usually go for a walk in the park; life is grand for us both.

Also, I started thinking about NOT having Sari around and I surprised myself by getting sad. And I know that I don’t need any more sadness in my life.

The Suggestion

While I’m adjusting to Life-Without-Trudie, it has been suggested that I not make any major changes in my life. The suggested time frame for this major-change-moratorium is twelve months. I will need much help from God to keep that suggestion. I’ve been relying on Jesus to this point, I guess that it will just be more of relying on Him again.

The Saying

The way of life I’ve adopted, has a saying: “If you’re not sure about what to do, then do nothing.”

So, I guess for now, I’ll let things continue as they are.

How Am I Doing?


This is a follow on blog to the Bartkus Battle blog. I lost my dear wife Trudie on November 22nd after a battle against cancer. Jesus won. She is now a new bride of Christ with Him in Glory. This is a blog about my continuing journey in following where He will lead me. It has been and will continue to be an adventure.

Life Without Trudie

I’m doing OK. I had the week of the funeral off and now I’m back to work. It is pretty slow now so it is kind of nice.

I’m doing my best to take care of myself. I’m still keeping the H.A.L.T. (hungry, angry, lonely, or tired) at bay. I’m back to going to the gym at 5 AM three days a week. I’m going to meetings almost every night.

The house is a whole story in itself. Laura L. (Trudie’s nephew’s wife) came over Saturday with her landscaper-grade leaf blower and we got all the leaves off the roofs and gutters. She also made short order of the driveway, deck, and porch. I’m slowly attacking all the clutter. I’ve gotten rid of 90% of the magazines that had accumulated. Millie, Drew, and John took all Trudie’s clothes to Goodwill for me. That helped a lot. But I also realize that a 4 BR 4.5 Bath house is way more than I need. I’ll continue to SIMPLIFY as much as I can.

I’ve got friends who come and let Sari out three nights out of four that I work. That way I can go directly to a meeting from work. I think I’ll eventually put Sari up for rescue. I’m not a “dog person.” I like dogs; I can manage dogs; but I don’t “need” a dog in my life. And taking care of her is a challenge right now. I am taking her to the park two or three times a week and I am enjoying walking the circuit with her. Making her walk at a heel lets the control freak in me out just a little bit.

In January I’m going to be part of a North Point pilot group doing the Grief Share material. They had closed registration for it but are graciously allowing me to join. I’m looking forward to it. I am definitely going through a grieving process. I’ve told myself that it’s OK to feel sad; that’s just to show how much I felt love for her. I’m leaning on Jesus when the sadness is strongest. He is stronger than the sadness.

I get to “work” at church this Sunday and after the last service I’ll be driving to Millie & Drew’s and we all will be there for Christmas. Avery, Lewis, and precious granddaughter Gracie will be there also. It will be a great time together.