Transition and change have permeated our lives and just as I believed I was finding my footing with our “new normal” an unwelcome and unanticipated change landed at our doorstep. Our cat, a long time member of our family and certainly a senior feline became suddenly ill. No stranger to several maladies that impact senior cats, our “Miss Lucky” was prone to bouts of constipation occasionally requiring trips to the vet clinic, but this time was markedly different. She was diagnosed with lymphoma and we had to make the difficult decision to euthanize her.
One considers these sorts of possible outcomes but until you have to plant yourself face to face with this eventuality, it doesn’t have an emotional impact. When the time comes, no amount of preparation will prevent the grief from welling up when you least expect it. Strange how much of our hearts this feline companion captured. It is unsettling to expect to find her in her many favourite spots around the house and experience the jolt of realization that she is gone for good.
I found over the years that my feline friend was both a comfort and a source of solace when difficult times entered my life. She was a stalwart companion when my father passed away, my son left home, and finally, when I left full time work and struggled a bit to find my bearings and establish new routines. Animals naturally help humans in our healing process and it seems bittersweet and ironic now that my cuddle buddy is no longer available to help me heal from this particular loss and adapt to change.
A special pet becomes a member of your family, an integral aspect of one’s daily lives and routines. Our cat also filled in those tiny fissures that break out in your heart as you accumulate the pain from traumatic events and major disappointments and it seems that those emotions are close to the surface now as well. I guess that is the nature of the grieving process. It can’t be rushed and this transition will require new comforts and new forms of support. Patience will be required as I find my way forward.
I am truly grateful to have had our feline friend in my life for the past fifteen years.
Rest in peace, Miss Lucky