Today was tough. Today we said goodbye to Pantera.
17 years. A lot has happened since that matted mess of a kitten showed up on the doorstep. Nine homes across two cities, relationships, friendships, school, marriage, a dog, a kid, another kid. The one constant was that fluffy white princess cat named Pantera.
We were a package deal. She was always at my feet begging for whatever I was eating or curled up in my lap purring because that’s all she needed. And sometimes it was all I needed.
Our two became three and she found her second person in Ana. Then three became four and she realized Milo wasn’t leaving so she taught him how to beg for food and blew his mind when she’d rub on him.
Then four became five and Pantera replaced Ana as her second person (sorry Ana) with Sam. She loved that little boy, would sit outside his room and meow in the morning, would love on him when he got out of bed, would be in his room as he played and he’d read to her and she’d purr because that was all she needed.
Then five became six and she would drape across our laps as we fed Jasper and she’d sniff his toes and rub on his legs.
Then six became five. Two became one.
The final due of having a pet, of choosing to love something and care for something so small and with no utility, of having something that loves you back unconditionally, is that one day you achingly say goodbye.
She wasn’t just a cat. She was Pantera. She was my first pet. She was a constant.
I was her person. And now I’m a grown ass man weeping over a fluffy white princess cat. She was the best damn cat in the world.
I’ll miss you, little girl.