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On December 15th, my phone rang.  My heart skipped a beat.  It was the vet’s office.  I answered the call and got the news I’d been alternately wanting and wishing would never come: Hamlet’s cremains were back.  I could bring my baby home.

 

I went after work and picked him up.  My little guy, whom I’d gone to the ends of the earth for over thirteen years, now fit in a quart-sized Ziplock bag.  That was inside a plastic bag and that was all tucked neatly inside a velvet bag that says “Until we meet again at the Rainbow Bridge”.  I cried.  I talked to one of the gals for a while, who assured me I’d done everything I could for him.  That they’d done everything they could for him.  She gave me a hug and told me not to beat myself up over his death.

 

And gradually, things are getting better.  I see pictures of him now and smile.  I’m more cheerful than I have been since he passed on the 28th of November.  The doubts are fading, but they’re still there.  I miss him like crazy and the house isn’t the same without him.

 

We’re getting ready to see about carpet and upholstery cleaning.  And then, we’ll think about a new kitty.  Christmas isn’t the best time to think about the carpets, so we’ll aim for after the new year.

 

My Christmas spirit is not all there this year.  My uncle passed, Hamlet passed, and another dear friend passed.  I’m over 2015. It needs to end and 2016 needs to be a better year.  We decorated, I’ve purchased gifts, and we’ve made our usual plans.  But I’m not all in this year.

 

Hamlet made my life bright.  I could be having the worst day of my life, trying to hibernate from the entire world, and he’d find me.  He’d hop on my lap and head butt me until I scratched his ears.  He’d howl if the smallest bit of the bottom of his bowl was visible or if his litter box wasn’t up to his standards.  We didn’t always agree on these points, of course.

 

As I fell asleep one night, I swore I heard him meow.  I know it’s a trick of the mind, but it was a nice trick.  It brought me comfort.  I’ve seen his little shadow from to time darting behind the Christmas tree or in the back entry, heading for the basement.  I like to think he’s visiting once in a while from the Rainbow Bridge.  I like think he’s happy there, and healthy.

 

Life for me will never be the same.  I’ve had too much loss in the last couple of years.  I’ve grown a little bitter because of it.  A little bit less like my usual self.  But I hope those people are watching over me from their afterlife.

 

And I hope Hamlet keeps visiting.  The house isn’t the same without him.

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Hamlet October 2015

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