My Furever Baby, Hershey

Last time I wrote on the blog, it was a letter to my beloved furbaby Sierra. It’s been 10 months, the morning after saying goodbye to my baby Hershey, and all I can think to do is write..

I don’t know if I can write a letter the way I did with Sierra but I can express my hurt and my love, nonetheless.

I never in my wildest dreams thought we would be saying goodbye to both babies in one year. I knew they were getting up there and after Sierra passed, I excessively looked up the lifespan of an indoor cat to find that I should have at least a few more years with Hershey. That calmed my heart slightly because losing Sierra left a catastrophic hole in my heart that seemed to never fully close up and has now blown all the way back open. I feel foolish now to think that I had seen an average statistic and believed that would be what was true. Only three days ago, he was completely fine and in my arms and cuddling me and the health decline over the course of three days has shocked me to my core.

I don’t think anything can ever prepare you to say goodbye to your pets and the amount of heartache that comes with it. Being there for both my babies as they’ve drifted off in to eternal sleep, and gained their wings, has changed me as a person. I don’t think you’re human if you don’t allow that to change you.

The thing about pets, is they aren’t just pets. Anyone who’s had one knows that they are a part of the family and become a part of your everyday routine. For the past 14 years, I’ve had black fur on every single thing that I own and I wouldn’t change that for the world. The morning wake up calls with barks and meows and the unconditional love and cuddles were things that I sometimes took for granted. They just became so normal, I never thought they would be so rapidly taken away from me.

Almost 15 years ago, my parents told me I could get a cat. We walked into ASPCA and there was a cage with week old kittens in front, then against the back wall was a massive cage with older cats. I walked over to that cage and put my fingers through the holes in the gate, and this few month old cat came over to me, rubbed his head on my hand, and from that moment on, he was my baby. They said his name was Lenny from the streets of Long Beach, and that he was now mine. We changed his name to Hershey, brought him home and he was truly my baby boy. I loved him with every ounce of my being for almost 15 years. I wish I could remember all the good right now and eloquently express it, but I’m grieving too deeply to be able to comprehend those moments right now.

He was my lover boy and after Sierra passed away, he stepped up and tried to fill that deep dark void that was left behind. He took over so many of the characteristics that she had and continued to keep this family going through such a dark time. I never imagined having to say goodbye to him so soon and so sudden.

My heart is truly shattered into a million pieces. Any pieces that had started to recover after losing Sierra have broken open again and now the pain is even deeper and more intense. I pray that through time, my family will begin to heal and deal with the new norm that we are looking at. We’ve never lived in our current house without them, as we moved here after already having both of them as a part of the family. It’s the routine and the energy and the space and the sounds that are going to take so much time getting used to. Everything is so quiet and everything reminds me of them.

I know every pet owner goes into adoption with the knowledge that these days come and yet we still do it because “it’s better to have loved and lost, than never loved at all” but the losing part is heartbreaking and all I can do is hope that time will heal and slowly mend my broken heart. This is a type of pain I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy.

Grief is grief and if you’ve ever had a pet, you know how hard it can hit you. I pray that anyone experiencing any kind of loss will be healed and hold on tightly to those close to them and that you know it’s okay to take the time to grieve. I hope that we can take from this that time is precious and we need to be more gentle and loving to everyone we meet because life is too short to not take the time to be kind and compassionate. You never know what someone is going through and you never know how long anyone has here.

My heart is split in two and I pray someday it will be healed but for now, I will continue to grieve the deep loss that I’m feeling and the pain that is indescribable.

Love and light. 🤍

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