I do realize the policy about submitting dreams, but I feel this one was of a distinctly paranormal nature, and feel inclined to submit it.
I want to start off by saying that I've suffered from autism and crippling depression my whole life - so when I refer to this cat as my best friend, I sincerely mean it. He stood by me for 14 years as the most faithful companion anyone could ever ask for.
Unfortunately, his life was cut short by a neighbor's carelessness. It started with a very large sheep dog, and ended badly. I would rather not go into details - but his death was sudden and left a hole in my heart. He had been with me since my childhood, and it was almost unreal at the time. It took several hours for reality to set in - but it sunk in hard. I spent the majority of the night sitting by the window and looking out at his grave (my father made a marker for him in the woods close to our home).
I suppose I must have fallen asleep around 3:00 a.m. And I will never forget the profound feeling of this experience. Unlike a normal dream, this has remained in my mind for 3 years now, just as crisp and clear as if it had actually happened.
I was walking outside, and it was a nice, sunny day. Bailey runs up to me like he always did and demands a belly rub, which I happily oblige to. We spent what seemed like an hour or more just hanging around like old times. He sat in my lap, and I basked in the sun on the steps of our old house. Suddenly -- he hopped off my lap and started to leave. I followed him, trying to catch up, but it was too late. He turned and gave me one last look, then retreated into a small foxhole under our porch. That was the last time I would ever see him. He hasn't haunted my dreams since, nor have I had any other odd experiences. But I feel as if this was his spirit coming to me to say goodbye. The goodbye I didn't have a chance to give.