The second day without my cat Bella.

I notice the absence.

We put her water dish away. She will never drink from it.

Her litter box in the bathroom is gone.

She's gone. She is truly gone. I will never see her again.

The anguish. The grief.

My mother said "We've lost our home, our family, and now our cat. What will we lose next?"

Later, she pointed to her chest and said "I'm so broken."

Where is the joy? The happiness? Will we ever know it again or is it gone for good?

I'm 26 and I feel ancient. Other people my age have optimism. They see their life going somewhere. They have plans and dreams. I have none of that. It feels like my life is over, like things will never get better.

Last night, I woke up and couldn't breathe. I think I had a panic attack.

Tonight, I took my dog outside and breathed in the cool night air and told myself "You're here, you're here" as I looked up at the stars.

Yes, I'm here but she isn't. I'm here and my father isn't. I'm here I'm here I'm here.