After the death of a pet, so many friends have said to me, “Never again”, meaning they will never bring another animal into their lives because of the pain that comes at the end.
I understand. I understand, but I completely disagree.
Grief is the most devastating of emotions. Those of you who share your lives with animals already understand this. Those who don’t, or who don’t even like animals may as well stop reading now. This is not for you and you are not equipped to understand it.
At this point, we have said goodbye to several feline members of our family. For those who haven’t been through this, I’m sorry to inform you that it never gets easier. With Clark, 18 years of love and companionship created a bond that is tough to release. This is the most difficult loss we have faced.
While the last two years or so have been tough, and the past few weeks even more so, I would not give up one second of those 18 years to avoid the heartbreak at the end.
The pain is awful. But it’s fleeting. The memories of Clark’s life are powerful and positive, and something to be celebrated. We were lucky to have him in our family. One day–not today, but one day in the coming months–we’ll adopt another cat and we’ll honor Clark’s memory by providing a loving home for that new family member.
Endings are always hard. But the end will always be overshadowed by the life that preceded it.