It's hard to believe it's been a year since we lost my brother. Nothing will ever feel the same to any of us. It was so incredibly sudden and unexpected and it was hard on all of us, but especially my mom.
Last night I was laying in bed thinking about what I would post today, the one year anniversary of the day we got the call. I was very sad, crying, and believing that my mom and sister were probably far off in Michigan doing the very same thing. But then he came....Bushy. And my plans for this post changed.
I don't love having animals. I think it's a good thing for the kids because they learn compassion and, in theory, how to take care of something. But really it's Chris and I who take care of the pets around here. Sometimes it seems like more effort than it's worth but then there are moments, like last night, when I can't imagine my life without them.
Bushy is almost 12 years old - I have always loved older animals. They get to a certain age and they are just so wonderful! He climbed up beside me and started purring. Oh, the sound of a cat purring! I know it really means that they feel safe and loved, but it translates into "YOU are safe, YOU are loved." I stroked his soft fur and realized that in 12 years he has given me far more than I could ever give him.
My mind drifted to Sir, our wonderful black cat, who lived to be only 10 years old. He was an amazing cat. He had an air of dignity that I've never before sensed in an animal. Chris and I were absolutely shattered when he died. He also comforted me through many heartaches. I will always miss him.
Then there was Muffin, my beloved cat that I had from the age of 11 until I was 24. I had my senior pictures in high school taken with her. There had been so many horrible days in high school when I had come home and collapsed onto my bed in tears. She would instantly come out from under the bed and through my sobs, I could hear her purring. You are safe, you are loved. I don't honestly know how I would have made it through those years without her.
My sister is fortunate that she has not only three cats, but that one of them happens to be one of my brother's cats. Although Daniel had three cats, Kringer was the only one he really loved and so my sister brought him back to Michigan with her when she left Arizona last year. I'm sure Kringer is bringing her a lot of comfort during this difficult week. Hopefully she will let my mom spend some time with Kringer, too. I think it would be wonderful therapy for her.