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Now I'm Falling Apart


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I'm finally starting to REALLY feel the pain of my loss and now I can actually FEEL why my mind was using that defense mechanism of numbness to protect itself. This pain is unbearable, unspeakable, WAY too much to cope with!! I've had 2 or 3 spells this week (long after her passing, at 74 days) where I'm sobbing so hard I can't even catch one breath and feel like I'm going to pass out, plus nausea and wanting to rip my brain right out of my head so that I'll never feel anything ever again! This IS worse than any of my other losses, even that of my beloved Sabin, because I honestly don't think I can continue on existing like this, without the love of Nissa in my life to get me through her own loss! And I also know that I've only begun to let some of the enormity of her loss into real awareness....I've never been so afraid of any pain before than I am of this one. I'm in such a panic because despite all the tools I've learned about regarding grieving, they all seem so trivial and useless in the face of this, this unbelieveably crippling pain.

It just hit me tonight that I don't think I can even live, without going insane with grief, without HER specific love...a love that I can't ever see could possibly repeat itself in my lifetime. A love that spanned close to 20 years, a love that took that long to grow into what it ultimately was. Even IF I ever could let another cat into my heart in the same way, we'd likely adopt someone who was already older, since I wouldn't want to chance being the one to die first, leaving them without someone to care for them, and so there would just never be the same amount of time to develop the same kind of relationship Nissa and I had together, the same sheer amount of love we had for each other. And since we won't likely get kittens ever again, how could that bond ever be as huge as it was with Nissa and Sabin in the first place? This is what I realized tonight, and now I'm starting to feel the vast and terrifying VOID of having to wait until I, too, die, to ever experience that again......and if I live that long a time, it will be TOO long for me to cope with!

We had the same neighbourhood cat come 'round today again for a visit. She came in the house again, ate some food again, even had a pee (I've still not put Nissa's litter away - just can't) and a spot of playtime with me (w/little joy in it for me), got on our counter (probably looking for MORE food!), then hissed, spit and growled at me when I simply came and stood beside her. This total CONTRAST to the relationship I had with both of my kidlets is what made me start realizing the vastness of this void in my life now. In all of almost 20 years, Nissa was NEVER grouchy like this with me, even when she was truly ticked about some annoyance, even if that annoyance was ME, teasing her in play. (yes, of course I'd stop immediately if she got annoyed at all) Even when she was so sick in the last while....she never hissed and spit....only at her Daddy, but in play, followed by coming right back to get 'pestered' again should he dare to stop 'bugging' her! It all made me aware that NO ONE is ever going to fill this huge void except her, herself...and I can't see surviving the rest of this life without her, and that.

And then, after agreeing to help a friend a BIT in her rescue efforts (see, I've been TRYING to do things to get through this)....she's gone and taken advantage of me, even knowing how much in pain I'm in. She gave me WAY too much to do and when I told her outright that I didn't feel up to doing quite THAT much, she ignored that and dumped it all on me anyway. It's HER opinion that 'keeping busy' will help me, but I know different, because I know myself. Sure, I can still refuse to do any more than I feel up to (and then she'll likely be annoyed with me and we'll fall out of touch), but that total disregard for my grief and knowledge of myself really hurt, and was another way I ended up seeing this marked contrast in how my relationship with Nissa was and how relationships with others simply pale by comparison.

So I'm finding no comfort in other cats, nor in friends (who too often sound so disappointed to hear I'm doing worse and worse, not better and better) and too often too little even in my husband, who never grieves very intensely himself, so can't truly understand it and who doesn't go out of his way to comfort me, like Nissa always did. I now also don't get even a fraction of the number of kisses she always gave me, and I'm finding even that one thing too hard to bear. (and yes, I've asked my husband for more, but he doesn't take it seriously enough to 'bother') There just doesn't seem to be anything or even anyONE worth living for now. I've said it before and I'll say it again....NO ONE ever loved me the way my kids did, and especially my Little Nis'. And today I realized that, unless they both reincarnate back to me again in this lifetime, no one likely ever will....so how do I ever find a good enough reason to carry on??? Just as I always told Nissa...words can never even BEGIN to express the totality of the love I feel for her, and now the same can be said for the utter anguish I'm starting to let in about the loss of the love she gave me. I wish this would kill me and my real fear is that it won't, and I'll have to live feeling like this empty husk of a person for the rest of my days.

Edited by Maylissa
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I am sorry that you are feeling so bad. i understand being an animal lover myself. my mom gave me that. i lost my wonderful Spanky in sept and life will never be the same with out him. i don't think you will ever find another who will be Nissa or Sabin but you will love another one again. i think you have to much love inside of you to keep it there. don't think that cat that comes to see you is grouchy, maybe she is scared. she is not sure what you are going to do, just b/c you feed her doesn't make you safe. i work for at a vet and see this all the time. did you ever think that maybe Nissa is sending her to you? i believe these things. she know how much love you have inside and maybe just maybe you can share it with another. i am not telling you to run out and get another one but don't shut your heart to one. there is so many unwanted animals out there and if anyone is a great mom it is you. any animal would be honored to be yours . leave your heart open you never know what can happen.

i will be praying for you. i know that my Spanky is with my mom and your nissa and sabin and when we go they will be the ones to greet us. hugs and much love to you. lori

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If I had failed to before now (my head has oftentimes been pretty darn fuzzy), please allow me to express my sincere condolences on your loss of Spanky. I know you'd mentioned this here before, once, but I can't recall now if I'd responded back at that time. If I hadn't, I'm sorry about that. Your loss is even a bit more recent than my loss of Nissa, and I can only hope you're not doing as poorly as I am with it.

Yes, I HAD actually thought that this cat coming 'round might be someone Nissa's been sending my way, knowing how much I'm missing her and her furriness, etc. And yah, I know this cat's reaction might well have something to do with fear, or even illness for all I know...I don't blame her; it's just rather disappointing and as I said, just makes me miss my ever-so-loving and overtly affectionate girl all the more.

I know I couldn't ever fully shut my heart to any animal, ever, but neither can I open it up fully yet. It's going to take a long time, I think, before the pain subsides enough for me to risk such vulnerability again. And in this present day, I can't say for sure whether I'll ever be able to open to love in quite the same way again, with the same intensity. Time and my own process will tell.

This cat came by again this last wknd and I decided to only give her ONE small plate of food. I really believe she lives around us somewhere, but just likes the freebies here for whatever reason. So she visited a bit, but was mainly looking for MORE food and I had to put her back outside when we were leaving the house. She sat outside our patio door, calling for me to open it back up. I then felt like such a schmuck, but heavens...she's not even MINE! So I gave her a few treats outside the door instead and told her she could try coming back in a few hours if she liked. Unfortunately, while she was here, the more solid grey cat who'd also been visiting our yard also came by, but saw this one inside our door and so ran away, and I'm hoping that isn't going to prevent that one from coming back (thinking this other one lives here!), as it's the grey one I really would like to be friends with, as she's more Nissa's size and of course, colour...plus, maybe she's not as growlie as this one! <_< But it's like the difference between wanting to get romantically involved and just staying as friends, and for a long time, all I'll be interested in is 'just friends'. Yet I've already realized, not just intellectually but from within the heart now, that it's true what they say:

It really does hurt more to NOT love, than to love, but this is part of my present anguish.

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Hi All,

I just needed to let people know about the losses I have had recently... You all probably know that my brother's parrot shamrock died... I called it mine because I pet sit for him and I feel they are a little bit of mine.... Well now two of my brother's cats that I have grown to love also have passed away... Their names were FatCat, and Spike... What will it be next!!!! Take care Shelley

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Ah Maylissa,

I just had a chance to fully read your post, and my heart aches for you. Allowing the pain fully in is a brave step. And I think that is why you are feeling worse now because you are allowing this horrible pain in, and not doing whatever you can to keep it out. Everyone grieves in his/her own way and in her own time, but as hard as this is to believe now, I truly believe that you are now on the road toward recovery and healing, even though it feels just the opposite. Again, I am not trying to compare you or your grief journey to mine, but for me, those first days were just SO horrible. unbearable, really-I apparently let in the grief immediately and could not stop crying for more than a few moments at a time. And I thought the pain would never leave or never get less intense. Well, it has, although I am certainly not "cured" yet. I think I now realize I will never be completely "cured" or over her, and certain things will bring it all back-including that intense pain that was with me constantly at the beginning.

And you are the only one who can know if/when you will ever be ready to let another cat into your life and into your heart. I understand your fears, I have the same ones. But I also remember all the joy that Tawny gave to us and that Tanner continues to give us, and that is why I choose to let Sweet Pea into our lives and yes, into my heart. I dread the day I will have to go through this again, but I just decided that I wanted to allow more joy into my life again also. And I know that I have given her a good home.

Here you have people who care and understand. I can only send hugs and kisses through this post. But know that I think about you and that I care. And I agree with Lori. You were a truly remarkable mother, and I know that if you are ready, another animal will be blessed to have you as her mom.


I am so sorry to hear about more loss for you. Believe me, I do understand. My mother-in-law just passed away last Thursday, and today was her funeral. I have had a year and half of tremendous loss. So I understand how you can wonder and worry what is next. I worry too. But I have also decided/decreed that this is it for me-for a very long long time, and I wish that for you as well. You are in my prayers.

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Serl, my friend,

You're right, you're right, you're SO right...that's exactly why I'm feeling so terrible now, and I still feel that the worst is yet to come, which is what is REALLY scary, especially with holiday time right around the corner, adding to the natural distress. Perhaps someday I'll look back and know that it was 'better' this way, to only allow it in in small increments, rather than the annihilating blast that hit me with Sabin's death, like yours with Tawny's. I just hope this doesn't also mean that it will last that much longer (in intensity) than my anguish over Sabin did. My intuition tells me it won't, but I can't seem to make myself trust that just yet...even though I should know better by now than to doubt my intuition anymore!

Yes, I'm sure I'll know if and when I'm ready and can emotionally handle another furry soul in my life...although all I keep thinking right now is that the only ones I truly want are my 2 kidlets, reincarnated back to me. Funnily, and most comfortingly, the last communicator said that Nissa was still wanting to return to me, with her brother, and even said that in their case, I could actually 'order up' what they'd look like again, just like it was the first time!! (and that they'd come back as, yes, cats once again) I'm holding onto this bit of hope like a boa constrictor with its prey! Can't help it. It's all I really want, cuz I don't want anyone else...I want to carry on our relationship from where it left off and not have to start all over again with someone new...unless I also add to the flock this time.

I was just telling my H tonight that the pain feels like I would imagine being pregnant and having someone rip my baby out of my womb would be like...it's that internal and is far stronger than nicotine addiction. The yearning for her feels like it's going to kill me. I'm sure you can relate.

My mooching and growlie visitor keeps returning and making herself at home, but she's so unlike either one of my kids that it only ends up paining me more. There's no affection from her at all and I actually fear for my limbs when she's around! :glare: I'm trying to make better friends with the grey cat, but he/she (can't tell yet) now is being more skittish and refuses to come in out of the cold for a proper visit and warm-up so far, though he/she's getting a bit more used to me. I worry that one or both of these cats don't even have a home, simply because I can't even fathom anyone leaving a cat outside that long in our now-snowy and colder weather(even though I know many awful people do)...plus the fact that they each seem to be quite hungry every time they come around. But I just end up all frustrated for me and anxious for them with each visit. And I really don't want to find out they're homeless, as I'm not even ready for the responsibility of finding another home for them...not that there are any around here anyway, as there are already too many who get dumped or killed outright here.

And thank you, too, for telling me I was a "remarkable" mother to my kids. I cry each and every time someone says such a thing. It warms the cockles of my heart so much and I can never hear this enough. It makes me feel like I've been of real use in my babies' lives and the recognition of this by others makes it seem all the more meaningful to me. For someone who never figured out what she wanted to be when she grew up ;) ...it's extremely validating.

I'm so glad I can come here and pour my guts out to you and everyone else, especially when it's getting so overwhelming now. I cried almost all day today and was so glad to see your post tonight...just when I really needed one! Bless you for having such a kind heart, Serl. We'll have to lean on each other for the next while, I guess (but no pressure if and when you're too drained, too!) so that we can both keep healing, one way or another. Thanks so much for being here and keeping me in your thougths, as I do you.IPB Image

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