I am sitting here drowning in guilt and tears.
I am hearing blasts of fireworks and seeing colors people are yearning for as a reminder of our independence, our freedom, our fights, and our wins.
Except all I am feeling is a loss that I can’t even begin to explain.
All I ever know how to do when I hurt is write, write, and write some more – even if it goes nowhere. I have to write.
I was so lucky when I found you, Mika.
You were tiny with eyes as big as a California sunset. You were covered in fleas and helpless. I held you close to me the whole drive home and spent the next 3 weeks bathing your 5 week old body to get rid of the fleas and you let me, as if you knew I was trying to protect you.
That was our first fight together. We won.
Soon after, you finally learned to use the cat box and jump on and off my bed. You snuggled close to my face and even as your body grew and your heaviness hurt me, I still let you.
The day I put you on the plane when we moved to Buffalo was the hardest day because you were so far and it was out of my control at that point.
I trusted the kitty Xanax would relax you but I knew it would still be scary and I couldn’t help you understand why this was happening. But we both made it and we won.
I remember how much you loved watching your first snow fall and how you’d manage to fit your too-big-of-a-body on the window ledge looking at me with those big green eyes to please open the window just a crack so you could smell the air.
You were always so happy when I opened the window, you’d stay there for hours just observing and smelling.
I will carry with me the guilt of this for the rest of my life.
The day I decided to adopt your new friend was for so many reasons you’ll never be able to understand.
I felt guilty that I wasn’t home enough for you, I wanted you to have a companion when I wasn’t around and after about 24 hours you took him right in.
I was so proud of you and your sweetness to him, even if he was tiny and too wild for you sometimes, you were so sweet to him.
I’ll never forget our day naps and cuddles and how you both fought for a place on my chest, but you’d always let him win because he was tiny and somehow it felt as if you knew he needed that comfort more.
I’ll probably never forgive myself for any of this, but I need to remember the amazing time we all shared. Mika, you were like my child. I’ve never been certain I’ll have children, but I was always certain that you were my four pawed child.
The stillness of the apartment has me in knots, the hole in my heart that I’m left with makes me feel physically ill.
The voids are present everywhere.
I wake up to silence and no one tugging at my hair straightener cord, no one is meowing for food when I make my coffee, no one is chasing me while I water the plants.
I find myself unable to breathe with every step in this god awful apartment.
Every tear I’m shedding is for you, my sweet girl and my sweet boy.
The memories you’ve given me will last a lifetime and I’m sorry I failed you, I’m sorry the universe took you too soon.
I’m hoping the moon is brighter where you are now and that you’ve got all the wet food and catnip you’ve ever wanted. Please rest well my babies. I love you. I am so sorry. I am so sorry.