I wrote a post a couple of months ago about some of my favourite Instagram accounts of all time, with captain Liz Clark being the top contender – an obvious choice as a cat & travel enthusiast. Many moons ago, Liz set sail on a trip around the world with her lifelong boating skills and her beloved Tropi-cat Amelia as her first mate. Despite the often disloyal nature of the feline family and the unpredictability of life at sea, the unlikely pair continued to sail the globe on their floating home with no clear plan, only the intention to positively impact the planet while cherishing every bizarre experience it has to offer. And thankfully for the rest of us, Liz allowed us to follow their captivating journey through the rare beauty of her Instagram feed.

This isn’t just an Instagram account that lends me a smile and a fleeting moment of joy during a scroll through the enormity that is my news feed. No, it’s an account that I actively search for everyday, and one that releases all of the happy endorphins when the name is followed by “• 1 New Post”. Last weekend, in search of those happy endorphins that Liz & Amelia never fail to trigger in me, I clicked into a new post to discover that the tabby cat who stole my heart was in critical condition following a dog attack. Not without a ferocious fight but so so tragically, she passed away a couple of days later.

Untouched by the harsh ocean winds and known to stand tall and brave in the face of sharks, Amelia was a Super-Cat. But underneath her unparalleled bravery and her often cheeky fearlessness and all that made her super, she was just that – a cat. A fragile and delicate animal out in the great big world, dodging tropical storms and deadly sea creatures in the same way that our house pets dodge cars and rain and hoovers and loud noises of any kind. I think that throughout all of Amelia’s wild adventures and everything we witnessed her do, we created the false illusion that she was invincible. I think though, that she was the closest thing to it.

When beloved pets leave this world behind as they transition to the next, I often wonder – are they worth the heartbreak? Odds are they will pass before we do, given their significantly shorter life spans. So when we commit to a pet and our hearts are fully in it, we are essentially committing to pain and heartache somewhere down the line. When something has the potential to shatter our hearts into a million pieces at any given second of any given day, is it worth it to continue to fall more and more in love with them every single day, as we do?

The answer is quite simply, yes. They are beyond worth it. Because even when their lives are cut short, we can take comfort in the knowledge that their lives are full. So full. This is exceptionally true in the case of Amelia the Tropicat, who lived a life full of wander and adventure and mischief and play and compassion. We try to give the world to our pets, and Liz no doubt gave the world to Amelia, literally.

And what they give to us in return is a lasting love, bigger than the whole wide world.

With the same bravery that she so clearly thought Amelia, Captain Liz Clark is rising above her heartache and continuing to do what she does best – try to change the world for the better. With the encouraging voice of her spirit animal pushing her along, she has set up a fundraiser for @MercyforAnimals, an animal advocacy organisation dedicated to preventing animal cruelty and promoting passionate food choices and policies. Tonight, cuddle your pets close, give kindly to the worthy cause through a little donation, and rest easy in confidence that you have made a difference to the world, in honour of Amelia the Tropicat. 🐱⛵️❤️ 🌈

I’m supporting this fundraiser:

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