the heart is a tender knot

The heart is an organ. I know this. A fascinating fist of muscles, veins, arteries, nerves, and cavities. I’m certain there are other components I am missing here.

The heart is also a tricky, tender knot. I was catching up on Instagram a couple nights ago when I saw that the founder of One Tail at a Time (badass Chicago dog rescue group) mourned the loss of her one. By one, I mean the companion (could be a dog, cat, horse, you name it) that is your one. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime connection. If you’re lucky, you share your life with your one for many years.

My one? He was this beautiful cat that I didn’t intend to adopt but did. He was my one for 12 years and I still miss him.

It’s been 8 years since I had him euthanized, and I was with him when the euthanasia medication was administered. I’ve never howled in such grief before. To lose your one is a loss like no other. My dad pointed out that the pain of losing a beloved companion is the price you pay for all the years of happiness the companion gave you. That fact doesn’t offer a whole lot of comfort, but it’s a price worth paying. My tiny heart, tender knot that it is, would skip a million beats if I could see my one one more time.