I’m writing this at 3.30am, in the early hours of Thursday morning. I don’t know when I’ll hit publish. Or if I ever will. But I just feel the need to write. This may be garbled. It probably won’t make much sense. But it’s raw, and it’s real, and it’s truly heartfelt.

I’ve mentioned on the blog and on social media that our gorgeous cat called Mouse hadn’t been very well of late. We’ve had several trips to the vets over the last couple of weeks, and it did look as though he was on the mend. But earlier tonight, our beloved pet passed away.

Outside cat clouds garden

Mouse the Cat, enjoying some playtime outside.

I’m telling myself it’s a blessing in disguise. That he’s now free from pain and at least his illness was quick and not drawn out. I’ve read lots about how cats take themselves off to be on their own to die, but I was definitely comforted by Mouse’s choice to stay close to me, lying on me whilst I stroked him before he finally took himself under the shelter of the dining room table for his very last moments. I just hope he felt comforted too. I hope he felt loved. I hope he knew how much he’d be missed.

Who knows if cats can even feel those emotions?

cat in front of fire

Curled up by the fire, bliss for Mouse.

I can’t help but wonder if there was something I could have done? Should I have taken him back to the emergency out-of-hours vet hospital? Or would the stress of the 30 minute car journey brought about the end sooner? Could they have done something even if I had? An hour before he died, I gave him his last lot of medicine, which he definitely didn’t enjoy. Should I have bothered? Would he have preferred to have been spared the last couple of tablets? Might he have gotten better if I’d been around more in those last few days? Should I have taken the time off work?

Canvas painting of cat wedding table names

LPD painted this gorgeous mini canvas of Mouse for our wedding last year. It now takes pride of place in our living room.

I guess the asking of all these questions is just part of grieving; the agonising process of trying to make sense of it all. I’m sure pregnancy hormones aren’t making that any easier, with the additional worry in the back of my mind that the stress and upset can’t be good for Pickle either. And we were so looking forward to Mouse and Pickle becoming friends.

It’s perhaps a little silly, but I bought a cuddly cat teddy from Amazon that vaguely resembles Mouse. A little something to put in Pickle’s room once it’s ready.

Cat looking into the camera

One of my favourite photos of Mouse!

Mouse, you were the cat for people that don’t like cats. You were loyal. You were loving. And you could never get enough cuddles. I loved it when you came and slept on me. I loved hearing your little collar bell jingle as you ran up and down the stairs. I will miss whistling for you to come in when you’d been outside. I will ALWAYS remember the time you sat and waited for us outside the entrance to the pub for hours so we could all walk home together.

poorly cat in blanket

The last photo we took of Mouse, cuddled up just after having his medicine.

I hope you enjoyed the time you spent with us – we definitely loved having you as part of our family. I’m sorry if we failed you near the end. I’m sorry we didn’t spot the signs you were poorly sooner.

Goodnight Mouse. Sweet dreams.