I lost my beloved best friend, Bear, a Maine Coon, in August 2004 and I still grieve for him today. He got me through sooooo much. He was born at my sister's home in Texas and they kept him for my nephew. When they moved back home, my brother-in-law, who hates cats, didn't want to keep Bear any longer so my nephew who was now three (and so was Bear) asked me to take him since I already had other cats. I agreed and fell in love with him instantly. When I divorced in 1996, Bear came with me and I fought my landlord tooth and nail in order to keep him. I had to give him away but after about a year, I managed to track him down and brought him home, near death. He had grieved himself so according to the old man that ended up with him. After that, we were never to be apart again. The day I had to have him put to sleep, he was 19 by this time and barely hanging on so I knew I had no choice since he was in so much pain. I held him and loved on him and talked to him as he drifted off to sleep and when I felt him go limp, I screamed and literally almost passed out. The girls at the clinic had to grab me and hold me in the chair. They had taken my son outside so he wouldn't know what was going on until Mommy could talk to him. I didn't have anyone to keep him so I had to take him with me. They cut some of Bear's hair for me and put it in a beautiful marble container and I had him cremated. I was crying so hard when I handed him over and had to drive away without him it was unbelievable. My little boy was asking me where his Bear was. Wow, try explaining that one to a three year old. Then when we went to pick up the Urn, my son didn't say anything until we got in the car and then he asked me, "Mommy, how did they fit Bear in that jar and can I let him out now and pet him?" To this day, I look at the memorial I have on my Chest of Drawers and sometimes it feels like my heart will burst it still hurts so bad. Although we got into rescue and now have 18 cats (most which are not adoptable and would be euthanized), only one comes close to Bear and I think Bear sent her to me to help ease the pain. She is handicapped, one paw is flat like it has been run over by a car, the other leg is bent at the "elbow" and she can't straighten it out and the paw is clubbed so she hops around like a rabbit, and her mouth is distorted. However, she and I took one look at on another and it was love at first sight. I named her Parisa meaning Angel, but I call her Momma since she took in four 5 wk. old kittens that we rescued last Spring. You would have thought they were hers. She let them nurse constantly although she had milk. She babied them and loved on them. She's just beautiful inside and out. She sleeps with me, tries to eat everything I eat (comes from being out on the streets fighting for food, I guess) and when she looks at me with those adoring eyes, sometimes I can see a message in them from Bear. Maybe I'm crazy for thinking that...I don't know. It helps ease the pain sometimes, other times I feel like I am betraying him...Anybody have any ideas on my long winded message?????
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