I’m no stranger to loss. In the last few years of high school and the first few years of college, it felt like I spent more time at funerals than I did at parties, saying goodbye to friends who were gone way too soon. With all the grief I’ve experienced, never did I expect it to be the loss of a furry, four-legged friend that would be among the hardest with which to cope.
My sweet snuggle bunny, Mimi, came into my life 11 years ago. It was only a matter of months before I couldn’t remember what life was like before her.
As she started showing her 17 years of age in the last few months, I was scared of what I knew would eventually come. Just the thought of it caused a separation anxiety of sorts and several bad dreams.
On Friday afternoon, my nightmare came true: Mimi let us know that she was ready to go, and we had to say goodbye to her. That was – surprisingly – the easier part because it was a blessing that we could give her one final gift of love: the gift of peace.
Coming home without her, though, ripped a hole in my heart. The sudden quietness of our apartment is deafening. Her absence is profound; we didn’t truly understand how much she was a part of our everyday routines until she no longer was.
There is no meowing when I put ice in my morning water.
The “welcome home from work” reception is less enthusiastic when there’s no flopping in delight at my feet.