These first 4 days without Max (has it only been that long? it seems longer somehow, too long really) have felt quite strange. Already, things are different.
I don't need these post-its any more, as there is no happy, meowing presence rushing to the door to greet me when I get home, trying to get out into the hall for a walk about, nor does the the door to the storage closet have to be left open so someone can get in to use the litter box. In fact, the litter box has been emptied and is soon to be discarded (I figure any new cat I might get in the future will need and deserve its own brand new litter box and scooper).
I don't have a whole pile of cat food tins to take down to the recycling bin, nor do I have 2 or 3 of them sitting in the fridge, covered with a plastic lid or tin foil, waiting to satisfy a sometimes finicky appetite. I can also sleep through the night undisturbed, without being woken up for feedings at 2:05 a.m., 2:37 a.m., 4:15 a.m. and 5: 30 a.m. Nor do I have little bits of kibble in my bed any more, spit out while someone was munching on the bowl of dry food that I learned to keep by the bed so I wouldn't have to get up and go to the kitchen every time he wanted company while he ate.
I could, if I wanted to, make travel plans without having to arrange for a cat sitter.
I can get up from the chair without having to apologize for dislodging anyone from my lap. I can put things on a dining room chair without worrying that I am blocking someone's path to the top of the dining room table.
I don't have to worry about leaving cupboard doors open or finding this sort of surprise inside if I do:
Sure, there are disadvantages to having to organize your life around a cat, but they are minor and far outweighed by the benefits of having a warm, loving, purring friend to cuddle up with on a cold winter's night like tonight.