If you are a regular reader of my blog (or know me), then you will know that we lost one of our kittens in May this year (and may I add, unexpectedly. Very, very unexpectedly). I am often struck by the big gap Tulip left in our house and our hearts, she was tiny for a fully-grown cat but had a larger than life personality.
My husband and I spoke of getting a companion for Meeko (Tulip’s sister), but somehow we always found an excuse to put it off to later, the end of the year, well, maybe in the new year. Till one day, not so long ago, we got a call from our regular vet asking us if we are ready to adopt, as someone just brought in a kitten that was found at the local hospital. We were happy to meet him and then decide. There wasn’t much time for the “deciding” part because we left the vet with him – and a stock of special kitten food.
It has been quite an emotional rollercoaster. The reasonable part of my brain knew we were under NO circumstances replacing Tulip, but that didn’t take away the emotions. It didn’t take away the fear of whether or not we were doing the right thing for Meeko, give an equal amount of attention to both (i.e. not make Meeko feel replaced) or the fact that I so badly wanted Tulip back – followed by guilt of “but does that now mean that I can’t love this kitten”.
My reality is that I would do anything, ANYTHING, to have Tulip back, but I can’t, and I would never exchange our new kitten for anything. And that is the reality of losing something you love dearly and gaining something you love. It is conflicting, it is confusing, but perfectly normal.
One thing can never replace another, some things can’t be undone (or redone) and you will never forget, but you will create new memories. This experience has made me realise that life is a bit like writing a book. Tulip is a part of our story, she is the chapter before this one. Nothing can erase that, nothing can change it but the story must continue.
The story of our fur-kids continues with Meeko and Oliver. The orphan who found his forever home and the human who found the capacity to love another, again.