Tuesday, August 12, 2014

See You With My Heart


There was a moment when life was just life,
 and death was a stranger I knew nothing about.
There was a fragment when ordinary was just ordinary,
and it was filled with everyday traditional normal things.
There was a glimpse when laughter was simple laughter,
and not laughter tainted with sorrow and loss.
Death was something far away and distant and not real,
something that happened to people on t.v. shows,
or in movies.
Other people.
Not me.
Not us.

When they ask me 
what I liked the best,
I'll tell them it was you.
~City of Angels

There was a minute when everything was right,
and then there was a second,
when it wasn't right anymore,
at 9:55 in the evening,
on a Monday.
Exactly one year ago today.
Now I can no longer think...'this time last year we were'.... 
or say you died recently,
 or even a few months ago.
One year.
I don't feel ready to be in my second year of Grieving.
It's still all too soon, too raw, too unbelievable.


 Your love is gone,
 and you are no longer you.


All I've got is my longing and my begging for all the yesterdays 
and the times when I didn't know anything at all 
or care about posts such as this one. 
 I look to the sky and I wonder. 
I miss all the things that never were, 
and all the things that never will be. 
 But that sky is different to me now, 
than the sky I knew, 
the one before I knew death. 
I see it's darkness. 
I see it's light. 
I see it all. 

There will never be a time,
like the time I lived in,

before I knew too much,
about life,
to know
that it's not
just Life.

It is nothing. And everything.
It is the only thing that we have,
for sure.
The only thing that is right now.

I wish I didn't know
so much
about death.
But I do.
I do.

Once several years back, another blogging friend lost their beloved cat.
She literally lost her mind.
Every day, every post was more emphatic.
Deeper pain.
Gut wrenching.
Everyday I tried to say a kind and encouraging word.
But, I did not understand.
I thought I did, 
but I truly didn't.

I have known loss. 
Loss of the very young infant to loss of an aged great-grandparent.
I have experienced job loss, pet loss, loss of a friendships, and losses of the heart.
I have had all the normal losses every single human at one time or another experiences.
But I have never had a loss that hit me
 so profoundly
so deep
so strong
 at my core. 


So when I think back to my blogging friend,
the one who was hurt so deeply
by a loss of 20+ year old cat.
 I didn't know
or understand how it could affect her so profoundly.
I thought I was compassionate.
I thought I was understanding to her pain.
But I didn't understand.
I do now.

No one knows or understands some things until we have experienced them ourselves.
 I know how hard it is to read the about someone's grief.
I know that at some point it's like you need to get on with LIFE.
But grief of great depth is not like that.
There is no getting on with it.
What there is is learning to
 absorb it,
 incorporate it
 and live with it.
It's a wall you live right up against, every single day.

My sincere hope is that no one should experience a loss this great,
 but I suspect most of us at some point in our lives will.
The only thing I encourage is that you not be like me.
Don't think because someone is hurting so bad that they can just "do something"
 to propel themselves to be OK.  
It's not like that.
Not at all.
And I will tell you this.
A kind word. A true heartfelt thought will help that anguish. 
Knowing that someone understands the pain can mean the
 difference in being able to go through that moment.
We live in a broken world.
Anyone can offer moments of encouragement, hope and beauty to others.
Acts of kindness can change people's lives even if one does not see the transformation.
Sometimes you cannot know the misery hidden in someone's heart.
But a genuine compassion can help begin healing the brokenness.

Cape Cod

A thought dawned slowly in my mind,
since I live in a Coastal area Grief became to me like beach evolution.

Beaches are dynamic, living breathing landscapes, and the prime example of beach evolution is the coastal barrier. These strips of land are usually long and narrow, and run parallel to the mainland. Sometimes they are islands and other times they are connected to land at one end. Scientists estimate that there are more than 2,100 barriers fronting nearly 10 percent of the world’s continental shorelines.
These sandy barriers are constantly raised up, shifted, and torn down by the natural ebb and flow of waves, currents, winds, and tides. Hooks form, inlets open and close, and beaches slowly march across their back bays and lagoons toward the mainland. This process allows them to naturally move ever upwards as sea levels rise.
On the southeastern elbow of Cape Cod where the New England coast reaches out into the cold and choppy North Atlantic, this natural progression has been taking place in full view of satellites for more than 30 years. The images of Cope Cod above were acquired by the Operational Land Imager on Landsat 8  and the Thematic Mapper on Landsat 5. They show the shape of the coast off of Chatham, Massachusetts, on June 12, 1984, and July 30, 2013.

That is Grief summed up for me. 
Time and the ocean pound away at the land,
 moving the sand from one coastline to the other, 
just as grief morphs and changes, 
a grain of sand at a time until it too looks very different over a long period of time. 
The shoreline, 
like grief is always there,
 but different worn away by the pounding.

 365 days ago at 9:55 PM my life changed.
Although  it may seem unthinkable that I could be so deep in mourning over a cat.
For me she wasn't simply a cat.
She was my best and most loyal loving friend.
I may have only had her on loan for 8 years and 2 months,
 but it was our lifetime.
For the time I have remaining
 I will miss her deeply.
Shifting one grain of sand at a time. 
Until the coastline of my heart bears no resemblance to the one before August 12, 2013.

There are no goodbyes for us.
Wherever you are,
you will always be in my heart.



  1. Ah Angel Abby. She was a terribly lucky cat to have been so loved-

  2. All I can do is send you my heartfelt purrs today.

  3. We will add our hugs, big tight ones to surround you, along with the purrs.

    ((((((( ♥ )))))))

  4. This post broke my heart because I understood it.
    Sending you love and light as we travel our separate but parallel journeys.

  5. The Kitties send you comforting purrs and gentle headbumps.

    And much hugs to you from me. xoxo

  6. Purrs and big hugs for you.
    I still miss my Tillie so much.
    Some kitties leave bigger pawprints in our hearts.

  7. The barrier islands analogy is really apt, and one we hadn't thought of before. Grief doesn't necessarily leave, but it changes alongside us as we move along our journey.

    We are sending lots of purrs and hugs today.

  8. I know you shed many tears as you wrote this post for your beloved Abby, and I am crying with you. Like you I have had to say goodbye to many pets in the past, and friends and relations and mourned them all. Then comes the one that changes life for ever. They say time eases the pain, and so it does at times, but then it comes back as devastatingly as before, and you know the pain will never go away, just hide itself for a while. It is hard to convey in words, but believe me when I say I do know the utter grief and emptiness you feel. We can put on a face but nothing can change what we feel in our hearts.

  9. Purrs and Light to you...Your post is beautiful and insightful, and really, there aren't any words to contribute. All we can do is wish you Peace.


  10. Special thoughts, purrs and (((hugs))) to you today from us.

  11. Thinking of you with love.
    Sue (Hannah and Lucy's Mum) x

  12. It's difficult to believe it's been a year already. What you wrote is very well written. Grief does indeed change, but it never leaves one who loved. And love is love, whether given to a person, a cat, a dog, a house or a country. When loss is felt it can be overwhelming, no matter what the loss. Those who don't understand loss, don't understand love. God keep you safe.

  13. Love to you, love to Abby's dad, and love to Annabelle, Ping, Boo, and Jinx. *hug*

    Your words are beautiful.

  14. You never fail to bring tears to my eyes. The one year anniversary was especially hard for me too with Tara. In ways it felt like yesterday, but in other ways it felt like a lifetime since I held her in my arms.

    I understand. I completely understand. {{{HUGS}}}

  15. She was so lucky to have had you in her life and you her. I know how hard it is to lose a dear pet and the one that sends us into a tailspin of grief. For me it was a scraggly stray called Clarence ten years ago. We only had him for 18 months but he changed out lived forever with his passing. I wasn't blogging then so I had no outlet for my grief. It overwhelmed me. I know how this feels and send lot of love and light to you on this day.

  16. i know the pain...I can be in my car and it hits me..I can be just sitting on the couch and I think I see them..I've lost many old cats and tears you apart.The only ones I want to see in heaven are my cats. I've told my family if you want to see me I'll be with my cats.They are my greatess love.

  17. You clearly loved her SO MUCH. I understand your loss as of recently and you're right: Kind words of the community, support from someone who knows, make all the difference. There aren't ever any words that take away the pain, but I feel like each kindness from someone who understands stops the hurt for just a moment so we can breathe. Sending love and purrs.

  18. I cannot believe it has been a year. Wow. Big hugs to you Mom. Abby was so loved and still is and that is just wonderful. We know she feels that love.

  19. Abby left a pawprint on the hearts of all who knew her gentle spirit.
    Many hugs to you and your family.
    Madi and Mom

  20. To say that your post was beautiful would be a massive understatement. Your love for Abby is so clear and I recognize your grief. *hugs* to you and your family.

  21. Oh wow, what a heavy post :( I am tearing up :(
    I am so sorry. This is such a beautiful tribute, and all of the poems are just so beautiful.
    ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!

  22. There are no rules, regulations or time frames on grief

    As unique as each loss is to those involved, so too is the heartache

    Just as we experience different levels of happiness or sadness with
    family, friends, loved ones; we experience the same
    with each of our pets; because ultimately they ARE family, friends, and loved ones.

    This post is beautifully written Deb, please know you are not alone in your grief


  23. We are crying with you as we read your words. We feel your pain and understand your deep sorrow.
    We are reaching out our paws and arms to hug you.

  24. What you have written: "No one knows or understands some things until we have experienced them ourselves" seems to really ring true for me with what I have personally experienced with human nature. What a beautiful post you have written for your precious Angel Abby. I, too, have related to your journey as Inka was to me what Abby was to you...thanks for sharing your journey with us, sending you gentle purrs and much love today and always.

  25. Your tribute and love for your dear beloved Abby are beautiful. Sending you hugs, purrs and prayers as you miss your angel.

  26. Incredibly beautiful, just as Abby was and will always be. Sending you much love and ((((hugs))))

  27. We all experience grief in our own way. I'm sorry for your loss my friend. Sending love your way.

  28. c'est très émouvant.
    Abby est toujours là, quelque part.

  29. Abby was a beauty. I wish I had been blogging for longer than a few months as I would have loved to read about her daily activities.

  30. Angel Abby will never leave your heart unattended, but she will try to place some smiles there for you.

  31. To me, it seems as if this past year passed so quickly. To you, I am sure it does not.This was quite an amazing, heart-felt and thought-provoking post. From the moment we take our first breath we are on a journey that will end inevitably in our death. If we stop and think about how miraculous life is, we can only come to the inevitable conclusion that we will have a life beyond this physical one where all those we love will be by our side. I believe that, and it is what often comforts me. I know that Abby will always be in your heart and you must travel the path of grief in your own way and your own time. Hugs, Janet

  32. Oh, Angel Abby, you are always in our hearts, just like Angel brandi and all the others who have passed. Life is, unfortunately, about endings. But the heart is about love.

  33. The line in the sand was drawn a year ago, before and after Abby. There is no going back, only forward and what a blessing to see your journey unfold in your insightful words and images. No one can feel your pain except you but we can hold a space of gentle light, love, peace and healing. Those of us who know the pain of deep loss can shine the light a little brighter. Shine on Abby, like the bright star that you are always. (((hugs)) to you Deb.

  34. This was absolutely beautiful. Thank you for being so open. You've said what many of us feel in our hearts but cannot express so eloquently.

  35. Abby may be physically gone...but she will never be forgotten...and she will be forever loved. Purrs and hugs to you....

  36. I feel blessed to see this love put forth on the page as it reaches deep into my own heart and strokes that which has changed and is still ever changing. My dear lost ones are just a thought away alive and living always in my soul waiting till that day I meet them again with open arms.
    When I read of loss I think of the deep love I now have for those still with me knowing that they may pass before I am ready. Knowing I am not alone in such feelings brings solace
    Support purrs and prayers
    Dad Pete and Family

  37. I really understand you, your words, your feelings.
    Cats, humans, it's the same. We are beings with a soul.
    Abby was your soul mate. I’m sure that sometime in the future, in another life you will be reunited.
    Douce soirée
    Nat à Chat

  38. PepiSmartDog: what a BEAUTIFUL post!!!
    You should be very proud of how wonderfully you are honouring Abby.
    This is a stunning post!
    Thank you for joining our Thankful Thursday Weekly Blog Hop again.
    Really appreciate you supporting us each week and we enjoy reading your posts. (((furry hugs))
    *waves paw*

  39. Weez so sowwy fur yous loss. Mommy sez da hurt nevew goes away it just eventually becomes easieer to bear. Until dat moment when it's not. A small memberance or action by anudder bwings it all gushin' wight back to da surface and tugs at yous heart openin' da wound again. This time it will heal a little faster but it still always wemains. weez be purrayin' fur yous and just know dat sumday yous will meet again.

    Luv ya'

    Dezi and Lexi

  40. From one who knows to another I send you love and a hug and a thank you for this beautiful post that says the eloquent things that I never could. One day closer to together again :)

  41. Sigh... I cannot add further to the depth and feeling of your words... I wear your shoes and I walk down the beach of your pain.

    Try as I might, I am at a loss for an adequate comment right now...My heart goes out to you and I as I struggle with my own milestone anniversary for Mr. Jazz, I pray all our kitties are together in a better place. xoxoxo


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