The house is dull without you and a little less like a home. I don’t know, maybe it lacks your charm and warmth. Or maybe it’s me that is different without you. Seeing your health deteriorate was tough for me. It made me feel helpless and small… and lost. Watching you go was worse. So final. I wasn’t ready to not have you in my life. It caught me off guard and broke my heart more than I thought was humanly possible. I couldn’t stop the tears as I drove back without you and I didn’t give a damn if anyone saw them. It grew worse when I reached the house, there was no reigning it in. It felt endless and violent, this grief, and I couldn’t justify the depth of my loss to those who saw you as “just a pet” or “replaceable”.
The idea of opening my heart to another cat and getting attached again… I can’t even picture it right now. I was lucky enough to have twelve years with you from when you were two years old. That’s twelve years of companionship and personality and a lot of unconditional love as we bonded and trained each other along the way. Another cat is not you. I know this. I also know that if a new cat does come along… well… you sure have left them giant paw prints to fill. For me, there will only ever be one Phoenix and I am thankful it was you.