Someone I love dearly has died. That she was a cat and not a human being doesn’t make that any easier to say or to cope with. It feels like I have shards of broken glass in my heart, and my eyes ache from all the tears. I know from past grief that this deep pain will ease over time, that it will become a thing of sudden moments of loss and not a continuous ache. It will go from constant companion to daily visitor and eventually to a series of lingering sparks triggered by an image or sound or quiet memory.
But it will never fade completely away, and that is as it should be. Because grief is love, however much it hurts. We would not feel it if we had not loved, and the greater the love the deeper the pain. I would not give up the one to save myself the other, even here at the rawest edge of loss. I loved my Bast and she is gone forever , but I would not trade a second of the time we had together to ease the pain of the moment.
Farewell my dear one, I will never forget you. Thank you for teaching me patience and perseverance and for letting me share you with the world by way of instagram and infrequent cat blogs you didn’t even know you had, through anecdotes about you biting me and stories of how talented a scrunchie juggler you were. The best way I can think to honor your memory is to keep telling your story lest forget it.Bast (Bats, batsh*t, Bashepshut, The Demon Ba’at, Fattypuss, Chonkunamen, etc) was abandoned by neighbors who lived across the park from us. We had met her on the curb in front of the corner store, a Margaret Keane pity kitty in the flesh, her gigantic galactic eyes sucking us in everytime we would pass by. It was clear someone had thrown her out, because she was starving and looking to the humans to help her. It was one of those things that makes you angry but there’s not much you can do. Or was there? I remember the second I decided that she was doomed if she stayed out there much longer. The next day we catnapped her out of the dirty alley she was hiding in and took her home. It took 2 weeks to nurse her back to being able to walk on her own, discovering she had broken her leg at some point and had a limp. She was a little cat skeleton in a fur suit much too large.
Over the next 2 years, we would feed her as much as possible and love her in spite of the spitting and biting and hissing until eventually, she became ours. It was like a light went on one day, she just stopped being a terror and allowed herself to be loved. It would take another year before she would enter the bedroom, and another before she would sleep nearby, but we couldn’t know t was because she had developed a lymphoma on her lung that would eventually be her end 5 months later. In these last 5 months, her life has been vet visits and hand feeding, but a lot of cuddles and songs and netflix. On her last morning, the sun broke through endless days of rain and the birds sang for her.