I am thankful to have found this forum. It is comforting to read the stories of people who are going through the same pain and supporting each other.
I chose to end the suffering of my lovely cat a week ago, after sharing more than 13 years of my life with her. It is the first time in my life that I experience bereavement of a pet. In fact I think it’s the first time I’ve ever had such a special connection with an animal. It has been a lot harder than I thought. I felt like I was “mentally preparing” for it because she had been sick for months (kidney disease), but it really was devastating to say goodbye after so many years.
Our relationship had an interesting start because honestly, I wasn’t even looking for a pet when she came into my life. She was a stray who needed a home and who followed me around whenever I got out of the house; I often feel like she adopted me, and not the other way around. She was a semi-feral cat who was somewhat fearful of me in the beginning, and she never trusted other humans easily in her lifetime (who knows what she had been through before finding me). I think that those things made our relationship particularly special. Over time, she did get quite comfortable with me, sleeping next to me under the covers and curling up on my lap all day long when I worked at my home office.
I was alone and single for most of the time we lived together, and in addition, I work mostly from home. She was always there through all these solitary years of my life.
I find comfort in knowing I could give her a long and happy life and that she went away as peacefully and painlessly as possible. Thankfully I don’t live alone anymore and have the support of my partner in this difficult time.
I’m starting to accept the loss but I still find mornings difficult. Even at the very end, when she was lethargic and barely able to feed herself, she would still come and greet me every morning, as soon as I would wake up. I have not been able to work in my home office either (I’ve been working in cafés and other rooms inside my house). It was the room in the house where she had most of her things (bowls, litter, scratching boards, her favorite chair, etc.) and the place where we spent the most time together. I think I will give this some time and try and do this process gradually (like maybe move one thing out per day). I’ve also decided to order some memorial items online (personalized keychain and locket), which I am awaiting to receive. I figure it will be preferable to have nice things to remember her, instead of a litter box! And it will probably help to make that transition.
Thank you all for listening. I hope we can all find the support we need in this difficult time.