After three weeks of missing in action, we have accepted that Greta is no longer with us. One night the Dogtor and I, feeling as though we needed to make things final, had a glass of bourbon and toasted our first cat, who had a very split soul: one that was troubled and full of darkness, and one that enjoyed being cherished and sleeping on your chest.
Oh Greta. We spent years fighting and making up. I might miss being attacked at night while I sleep. All of our friends who ever pet sat for us will miss being afraid of you as you growled at yourself and masticated your own tail. The technicians at the clinic still speak in awe of the way you pulled out your own catheter with your teeth after being spayed.
I remember the first time you saw me wearing a baseball hat, and your tail poofed up like a giant pipecleaner and you ran away and lived underneath the couch for the afternoon.
I remember the healthy look of fear we all wore when you would jump into our laps and start purring, because we knew the love wouldn't last. I remember all the times you stuck your face in food I had just cooked, then licked your chops smugly as I shooed you away. I will miss the way you possessed the slate base underneath the woodstove, allowing no humans or other animals onto your warm territory.
But you were a good snuggler in winter, and managed to find a way to sleep on my pregnant belly both times. And despite the scars on my legs from your nails and teeth, and the little holes I have in all of my leggings from your rogue attacks, I think we loved each other. You made me a cat lady and taught me to speak cat. I miss you, and still look for you in the yard, on the side of the road, everywhere.