For a 25-year-old, I feel I have been rather lucky to have gotten to this age and not had to truly experience grief.
By the phrase ‘truly experience grief’ I mean that no one in my immediate circles of family and friendship has ever passed away, but I have dealt with grief when extended family members have died or when a student I worked closely with died but still nonetheless I’ve not had to deal with death too much.
However last weekend life caught up with me. One of my beautiful cats sadly passed away very suddenly. He was 13, had a heart murmur and was a rather big cat (maybe slightly overweight?), but he was not ill and had actually had a lovely night sitting on various family members and relaxing on blankets.
He had a heart attack in front of myself and my Mum and Dad and no matter how much time will pass I will never be able to shake that image from my mind. The absolute sick to my stomach feeling I witnessed in that moment will also stay with me. We tried everything we could to bring him back but it was to no avail.
Oscar Wild (not named after the famous author but rather Oscar the lead role in Shark Tale, as my sister was only 11 when we got him and I myself only 12, so we had yet to delve into the realms of classic literature; still not sure I’ve really delved into that realm now) was truly a one in a hundred million type of cat. He knew what he wanted and what he liked and would be sure to let you know if you strayed into territory he did not like. He would let you carry him everywhere and really did not like the outside unless it was bright sunshine. He would come for weekend cuddles in bed and would always find someone to sit on at night.
To say that I was heartbroken to see him go was an understatement. He really has been there by my side through so much of my life and especially recently when I have felt particularly down he was a constant reminder of what I had to live for.
I know that losing a pet is nothing like using a person and I know that when I do ultimately have to face the day that I lose a dear loved one the pain will be incomparable but actually he was my family and that heartache and grief is just as real regardless of him being ‘only a cat’.
I’ve had a week and a half without him now and I am slowly getting used to my life without him. There will always be moments where I falter like now he would be lay next to me as I wrote this blog and the coldness beside me right now is very real.
In time I will probably write a blog post about how I have dealt with this grief but for now, I will just continue to remember Ozzy as one of the best cats I could have wished for and look back on his life with happiness.
Love you forever and always Oscar Wild.
“When tomorrow starts without me, don’t think we’re far apart, for every time you think of me, I’m right here inside your heart.”