russia. 1993 – dec 2nd 2011. my little big love.

In our 17 years together he went everywhere with me, every move to every city and every house. When I first brought him home he was 4 weeks old and could fit his entire little body into the palm of my hand. Since I was 18 years old, he loved me, followed me all around… for half of my life he has been my heart. He is the greatest and most beautiful creature I have ever known. My Grand Teacher, the only other love of my life.

Russia, The King, has died. In my arms, at home. We buried his sweet little body outside near his favorite bush, wrapped him in a beautiful scarf, with flowers and his toy. Back to Nature. We played this song at his funeral. My heart and soul are broken. I can feel his love- so big, eternal, incredible, unconditional- still lives. I can feel him kissing my face in the morning, kissing my tears, not wanting me to cry for him. Although all I do is cry for him. I miss his sweet little mouth, his gorgeous body, his smell, his purrs… and his absolutely overwhelming beauty, inside and out.

This has certainly been the biggest loss and pain I have known. He loved me when nobody else seemed to. He loved me even at times when I didn’t love myself.  He kissed me when I was in pain. He talked to me, sang to me, thanked me, took care of me. He made me laugh, filled my heart with splendid joy, warmed my bones and my spirit. I can still feel him taking care of me.

Russia- my best friend, my baby boy, my teacher, my king:
You Raised Your Flag Up Into My Heart.

Thank you for loving me so much. I have never known a greater beauty.
Forever Love,
Your mom, Noa

RUSSIA. 1993 – Dec 2nd 2011.

Always by my side….

(photo below by AnnaMaria Stephens for Apartment Therapy)



Last days- below are some self portraits and also photos by Stuart. Thank you Russia for letting us take these.

The 3rd-Eye kiss we always did…

Russia, if this enormous pain I feel now is in exchange for being loved by you, I would do it all over again, a thousand times. Goodbye my love, my heart, my baby. You are forever ineffable. (Thank you to Jane Blevin & Doodle for helping me through this time. You know. You know. And thank you to Zac & Tomas, who dug his grave, stood with us, and helped usher his perfect soul onward. And biggest thanks of all to his daddy Stuart, who saw him for who he was, loved him as much as I did, and who has taken care of me and Russia for so long. Stuart, he loved you as deep and wide as the universe.)


23 Responses

  1. Noa, what a beautiful tribute. I am so sorry. My mother just euthanized her kitty last week, and it has been making me scared for the day I may have to do that with mine. I am so sorry.


  2. That’s one of the loveliest things I’ve ever read. I’m crying for you! Your love is fierce and I’m SO sorry for your loss, but happy you have all of your beautiful memories and gorgeous photographs. He was SO handsome. xoxox ((((hugs))))

  3. My eyes and my insides are crying… I’m so so sorry dear Noa… it’s so hard to let our beautiful magical familiars go… the pain and loss you are feeling pains me… much love and all my thoughts are with you. love to the infinite, xo

  4. my heart is broken for you. i went through this a few months ago. it’s so hard and sad- these creatures and their amazing love and devotion are beyond compare. hugs x

  5. I know it’s silly of me but I can’t stop crying. I lost my RazMaTaz this past summer. I can truly feel your pain. Taz was 17, deaf and blind and I still couldn’t let go. He was my best friend. I’m so sorry for your loss my friend.

  6. I couldn’t read and not leave a comment. There’s nothing quite like the love we share with our feline friends, cat lovers know this. My thoughts are with you. Xx

  7. your love for russia is so touching. what a gorgeous photo story. thank you for sharing your heart. love you x

  8. This is so beautifully written and so incredibly touching. I brought my first puppy home just over a year ago, and I can’t imagine what life would be without his presence. Animals are truly magical and the gifts they give and lessons they teach so openly stay in our hearts forever. Sending love your way.

  9. oh my god, Noa. I am so sorry for your loss. I can only imagine the pain youre feeling. But this is such a beautiful blog post and tribute to him. I can tell by your heartfelt, poetry-like words that you were a wonderful mother to him and he will never forget that! Sending much love your way… xo

  10. oh noa i am so terribly sorry for your loss 🙁 i hope time and comfort heal your wounds, and although the gap will never be replaced, just remember what filled it in the first place and carry the happy times with you. my deepest condolences.

  11. These creatures,no- these amazing souls come into our lives and make you feel love like you never thought possible and they always leave us behind. With a gaping hole in our heart.
    I am sorry for your loss. I feel what you feel,three times over and over and over. xx

  12. oh my i wasn’t expecting this… tears are falling down my face… i feel for you noah, i don’t have a cat, but i have a dog, and every time i know of something like this i cry, because i imagine the pain i would feel if i lost my mr kobe. as i work from home he is with me all day long, he is my friend, he makes me laugh, he makes me take breaks to pet him… and i know how much love we feel for our pets, our companions in life, that ask nothing in return! i am so sorry about this and i’m sure that russia is “smiling” at you! take care noah! we’ll be here for anything you need!

  13. What a beautiful tribute to your Russia. Losing a pet is never easy. Our heart creates a little nook for them. Though his physical body may be gone, he will always be there in that special little nook in your heart, with you always.

  14. this post is so beautiful. i’m crying over here. i’m so sorry for your loss, thank you for sharing russia with us. those last few photos were just incredible.

  15. So sorry for your loss. I understand how essential an animal’s love can be (although no animal is just any animal of course). Lucky Russia to have you as his photographer. Lucky you to have him as everything else.

  16. I’m sitting here in tears and weeping for your pain… for the pain we all feel when we lose a creature so near and dear to our heart. this post hits home. it is a pain like no other and i’m wishing you nothing but peace and comfort. russia was beautiful and felt your love all his years. xx

  17. I am so so sorry for your loss.. I am new to your blog and your work.. and my heart stopped when I read this story.. we lost two family pets this past year.. and I know how the heartbreak.. and sadness you are feeling… and loss… Much Love to you

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