On Grief

I have a lot of feelings today so I decided to write them down. I’m sharing it on here because when I’ve read other people’s experiences it helped me with my own feelings and emotions.

It’s been exactly four weeks today that I lost one of my cats Mouse. It has been the hardest month of my life and I am still dealing with my grief. I am still processing all the emotions and different stages of grief every single day but writing it down like this has been somewhat helpful. I also wanted to share because not a lot of people talk openly about their grief. It’s not an easy thing to talk about but this is my way of coping with it.

I actually wrote about how I got Mouse over in this blog post. He came into my life in an unexpected way but he was the best thing I have ever gotten from my horrible breakup. Mouse brought so much joy and light and I will be forever grateful for that.

Mouse’s passing was an unexpected one. Writing about how he passed away is probably the hardest thing as he was run over by a car. I knew it was always a risk when you have an outdoor cat but losing a pet like that is cruel. Seeing him in that state as the last physical memory I have of him is traumatic and it’s something I’ve been trying to bury deep down in my memory.

Mouse was such a smiley, derpy and beautiful boy. He was so special. He was so loveable that you cannot be grumpy or angry when he’s around. He would instantly put a smile on your face just by how cute he was.

Losing him has really turned my world upside down. I have never experienced loss so close to me before. This is the first time I have lost someone I deeply loved. My cats are my family. I take care of them every single day since I got them and they’ve been with me through thick and thin. Months after my breakup, it was only Turbo, Mouse and I as I lived by myself as I started the next chapter in my life. They’ve seen me at my lowest and they always knew when I needed some extra love and affection.

During lockdown, Mouse became even closer to me. He’d slept on me every night and would wake me up by purring beside me or by biting the plants in my bedroom. He become attached to me as I am to him during the uncertain and worrying times due to Covid-19.

My cats have been my constant companion the past few years. They are my life and losing one of them felt like I lost a part of myself. Someone told me today that when she lost her pet, it left a void in her heart that will never be filled and that is how I feel.

Losing Mouse so suddenly has thrown me off completely.

The first few days after it happened, I was in shock and denial. I couldn’t believe he was gone. I was shook to my very core and I spent the day after hysterically crying by myself. Then came the anger and bargaining. I still feel it to this day. I would give everything to have him back. I’d love to be able to cuddle him again, hear his tiny meow, purrs and the sounds he makes when he’s sleeping.

I’m currently at an on and off state of sadness about it. I know it takes time and whilst I have accepted he’s gone, it still sucks. My heart still aches and I know only time will really help with the pain I’m feeling.

The thing I have learnt about grief is that everyone deals with it differently. No one person has the same experience or feelings even if you’re grieving the same person/situation. I’ve found reading about other people losing their pets was helpful. I watched a few videos too and whilst they were very sad, it helped me validate what I’m feeling.

I feel like some people just don’t understand and they probably never will. I know life goes on but I also feel like I am expected to move on and some days I find it really hard to. It’s a struggle. Whilst I’m able to find things to be happy about, I can have a really awesome day and by the time I get into bed, I’d be in tears. I feel like I’m in a rollercoaster of emotions and I get taken aback by it as sometimes sadness will catch me off guard. This kind of grief can be isolating.

I’ve also struggled to see Turbo grieving. He lost his brother too and the first week after Mouse passed away, Turbo wouldn’t come into my room. Mouse was mostly in my room since lockdown and Turbo didn’t dare go near it. I was advised by the vet nurse to make sure Turbo saw Mouse’s body before we took him in. That way Turbo wouldn’t go searching for Mouse. It broke my heart even more but it worked. I have seen it first hand that cats grieve too. Turbo wasn’t himself as he was also coming to terms with it.

Finding quotes about grief has also helped me. They’ve helped me normalise my feelings and gave me some assurance that what I’m feeling is normal and I shouldn’t feel embarrassed about it. Here are some I’ve saved:

“Grief, I’ve learned, is just really love. It’s all the love you want to give, but cannot. All that unspent love gathers in the corners of your eyes, the lump in your throat, and in that hollow part of your chest. Grief is just love with no place to go.”

I don’t know when I can fully say I feel great and fully recovered from this. It could be weeks, months or years but I’m trying to hold on to the happy memories I have of Mouse because there were plenty. He knew he was loved and I gave him the best life I could. I had so much more to give but I guess he was only meant to be in my life for a short time. I just wish that he’s happy up there and he’s got lots of other cats to play with and all the catnip he could enjoy.

I’ll end this by sharing one of the last photos I took of him. He loved the sunshine and he’d always be in the sunny spots in the lounge. Mouse will forever be my derpy special boy. He will never be replaced and forgotten.


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