November 7th 2007 12:33 am
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Our beloved Smudge OReo-Green O'Rourke left this earthly world today, at approximately 2:15 pm. She was surrounded by her Mother, Father, and Sister. Littlest Brother, Tux, spent the day in the basement, and Youngest Sister, Gem, stayed at our Mother's house.
Our brave warrior cat remained peaceful and dignified to the end, when she was relieved from her pain by Dr. Sam and his assistant. This special arrangement was made at 9:00 am, by our Dad, and accommodated by the Bridle Trail Veterinary Clinic.
Upon completing my last diary entry for Smudge, I dragged out the sleeping bag from the basement at 1:00 am, and laid it on the floor of our computer room. I eventually fell asleep in the early morning hours, with my loving Sister at my feet.
I am so honoured to have been in receipt of her unwavering loyalty, during our last night together. I feel so fortunate to have been able to tell her everything I had to say, as we spent the afternoon lying under our Dad's writing desk.
The O'Rourke family wore articles of green clothing, as a sign of support and solidarity for our sparkling Smudge OReo-Green. Around my neck, I wore a limestone arrowhead that I purchased in Dublin, Ireland, which will always remind me of my Sister's virtues.
Somehow, we all found the strength to watch Smudge from the doorway, as she was tenderly released into the spirit world. Mom and I had not been able to do so when it was Kamara's time, but we had Dad with us for greater strength.
When Dr. Sam and his assistant had their instruments laid out before her, Smudge looked up at our Mom and gave her the very last "Meow". We believe that she knew exactly what was happening, and assured us that she would be alright.
Our loving Girl went to heaven ever so peacefully, on the sleeping bag I had slept in. I believe the power of everyone's combined prayers and love made this an easy transition for Smudge, and provided a great sense of relief to our family.
The vet assistant gave me the shaved pieces of Tortoiseshell fur, which was shaved from her paw. It is now in a sealed bag, where I can find little bits of her dandruff.
The song on her Catster page, 'The Sea of Love', was chosen as it was on the radio before it was time to part. As she lay on the hallway rug, I sang the lyrics into her ear, as I had done in healthier times. Smudge always responded positively whenever I sang to her, even after she lost her hearing.
The final thing I requested of my devoted Sister was spoken with much belief and hope. I asked her to wait for me, because I would be there to meet her in heaven one day.
Until that day, I'll walk around the house, gazing at her favourite spots. I have found myself looking over my shoulder in disbelief that she is not resting nearby. I feel as if she will walk into the room, from her bed in the kitchen, and meow at me beside the computer. I want so much to place my arms around her, and kiss the spot in between her ears. I wish that she would come back to us, but I know that it will be me who will one day be going to her.
With tears this evening, I visited Smudge's Catster page and found that the video titled "Requesting Purrs (11/4/07)" was missing, whilst "Kitchen Smudge" was in place. I had previously contemplated removing it from the main page, as I did not want vibrant Smudge to be remembered that way. Minutes later, I revisited this page again only to find that the video of Smudge in ill health was back up. I'm not certain what this means, but I will take it as a sign that my Sister is alright.
I think I will leave the video in tact, as I do not have very many for Internet use. Her final days were also a part of her amazing life, so I do not feel that it is necessary to be discarded.
Our precious Tortuga, you sleep with the angels tonight, and know how sorely you are missed and how deeply you are loved with every chamber of my heart.
I would like to thank my Mom and Dad for their love for their children, both flesh and fur. Although, I do not know how I can ever thank them enough. Thank you to humorous Gem and baby Tux, for whom I rely on to mend the hurt. Also, thank you to all of the Catster families out there, who have been an extension to our very small family. It may take months to repay all those rosettes and stars, but I will make it my mission to do so.
Rest forever in eternal grace, dignity, and peace. We love you for all eternity,
Smudge OReo-Green O'Rourke
November 6th 2007 12:43 am
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I love you so much Girl. Even in your discomfort, you will offer me a weak "meow". As I watch you lying down, under the table, I wish nothing more than for the angels to take you away while you sleep tonight.
You have not eaten in days, you've lost so much weight, and can hardly walk. I gaze at you through my red puffy eyes, and I see such a strong fighter, whose chest is heaving up and down. Although you no longer have the ability to purr, I can feel your deep love for me in your fixed eyes.
Mom and Dad have determined that your three precious ribs were broken due to the fluid in your lungs, and around your gentle heart. As a family, we have also made the decision to not let them drain the fluid, as it will only return in a matter of days. You have also lost control of your bodily functions, and no animal deserves to live that way. We would never allow you to intentionally suffer, for own on selfish need to keep you here longer. Besides, it is only your body that will not be loafing about our home.
Your now weakened bodily vessel that houses your soul, will be so terribly missed. The pain of the realization that I will not have the luxury of seeing your beautiful face everyday has left me grief stricken. However, I am certain that nothing will pain me more than when we have to say good-bye tomorrow.
Good-bye...You know only too well how I feel about that phrase. My sweet Smudge, you have protected me from "good-byes" for the past seventeen years. Who will help me now? You have dried my tears with your fur, and always been there to make the hurt dissipate.
Even last night, as ill as you are, you made the journey downstairs to be with me in my room. Like so many nights, you sat on the sofa while I watched The Simpsons and all of our Sunday cartoons. I was able to feed you three pieces of cheese, and I thought it was the miracle breakthrough we were all hoping for. I think you only ate to make me feel better. Everyone on Catster has been so kind, offering serving suggestions, but we know it is too late. You simply do not have the energy to eat.
As I type these thoughts in my head, I turn around to find your loving eyes glancing at me. I continually stop to kiss you and tell you that "I love you". Then, you place your now little head down on your cold paws. Since this evening, your soft paw pads have been so cold. Mom tried to cover you with a very cheap and light towel, but even that was too heavy for your heaving body.
Smudge, I love your paw pads so much. They have the most unique mix of pink and black colours, and amazingly, our little Tux has a similar pattern. I love your raccoon ringed tail. Your pink and black speckled nose. Your faint orange Tabby 'M'. The two-toned goden brown and black left side of your face. I could go on for days, detailing ever last piece of fur. Even the hairs on my clothes. I purposely wore back today!
Days. Who knew that we would only have that amount of time to prepare ourselves for the worst day of my life? I have been told to concentrate on the fact that we have been given seventeen wonderful years together. I must remind myself of that fact, especially since so many animals do not reach that age, and with the quality of life we have been blessed with. But I still want to remind others that you are my life, my heart, and my soul. Aside from my two parents, I have never been so close to another living being.
Today was dreadful. I had to give a short presentation at my University, and when I approached the front of the class, I could not speak. I stood there with my clipboard in hand and just cried. I bubbled out something about you not being well, and told the stunned audience that my heart was breaking. I then excused myself for a few minutes.
If this is how I function now, how will I ever cope without you, Squid? I am so afraid of tomorrow. I am afraid that you will feel pain in your final moments, and cry out as our Brother did, a mere nine months ago. I wish that I had just an ounce of strength, you little warrior cat.
I cannot get over how rapidly your health has declined, from even just this morning. You were hoping up onto the coffee table in my room! That was definately worthy of the picture I took.
Your loyalty knows no bounds. I am so happy that you spent last night in my room. It reminds me of when you had your dentistry work done, and I spent the night on the floor next to you, in a sleeping bag. I also wrote you a lengthily 'Get Well Soon' card.
Oh how I will miss seeing your Christmas stocking up on the mantel this year. Now all we will have is an urn containing your ashes. The thought of that makes me want to throw up. It is the little things that make up life, but your brave heart and love have made up something that stretches far beyond this short and fragile life.
Every night I have been placing Holy water on your forehead. I did this anytime you were not feeling well during the course of your life. I really pray that it works, and does whatever it is supposed to do. I want Jesus to know who you are, and for Him to hold you in His arms, until the day that I hold you in heaven and never have to let go.
I love you more than words or tears can express, our affectionate, tender, devoted, loving Smudge.
November 4th 2007 11:07 am
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Yesterday was a very difficult day for me. Early in the afternoon, Dad and Sister returned home with Tux, who had gone for his second booster shot, to a North Toronto Cat Rescue allocated veterinary hospital. That's when they came at me with this little quarter cut pill.
I squirmed around and clenched my teeth. Dad eventually had to put on soft gloves, as I kept fighting with my sharp teeth. Sister kept missing the back of my throat, and the pill landed on my tongue many a time. She was very upset, as my Mom usually gives me my pills. Its a good thing that I'm deaf, because Sister and Dad were yelling at each other. They weren't angry...Just frustrated in their attempt to not stress me out any further. Also, my three broken ribs did not help the situation.
Alas, the pill went down the hard way. If only I wanted to eat my food, or at least the tasty treats the vet had given them to hide my pills in. Sister is not looking forward to giving me today's pills, but she feels that she can handle giving me my five drops of liquid medication.
She had plenty of opportunities to practice with the syringe last night. In order for me not to dehydrate, she would fill it up with water, and inject all she could into my mouth. This worked best when I was lying down on my side.
Sister's boyfriend, Todd, came over in the evening. They went to McDonald's to get some fries, but I would not even lick one. Sister was so sad, because they are amongst my favourite things.
Todd took the photo in my profile picture, and he also shot the video of me in the wee hours of the morning. As you can see, I was not very active. I spent most of the day on my side, under the table in our computer room. I did get up to go pee on a soft rug in the bathroom. My family washed it, but will leave it there to use whenever I like, as well as the litter box in the kitchen.
Last night Sister cried and howled herself to sleep. She kept the pillow over her head. When she was asleep, she had a dream that I was well again. At least I know Tux was there to comfort her.
This morning, Sister came upstairs to greet me. She noticed that I had peed in my litter box, and the litter gravel all over the kitchen floor made her ecstatic!
Unfortunately, I am still not eating. I've refused kitten food, adult cat food, tuna, milk, wet food, dry food, and everything in between. However, I did drink on my own from my water bowl. This made Sister and Dad so happy. They were smiling and shooting their fists in the air. I'm glad I was able to give them that comfort.
I am a little bit more active today, and I even meowed at Sister twice. I spent some time purring in the hallway, although it might be hard to hear over my heavy breathing. I've gone back to sleep, on my side, under the table. Until it is time for me to received my medication.
Please continue to purr and pray for your Tortoiseshell friend. My family and I hope that you Catsters and Dogsters know how much we appreciate every thread post, Pawmail, treat, corral, rosette, and star. Words cannot express our sentiments.
Tomorrow Dad will be standing outside of our veterinary clinic, in time for them to open. Please keep reading my diary for more updates.
November 2nd 2007 7:23 pm
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Right now I am laying side ways under our dining table. I'm trying to relax after the stressful day that I have had - the day all of us O'Rourke's have fought through.
For the past two days I had not been eating, drinking, or going to the bathroom. Our Dad decided to go into the vet in search of answers. On Tuesday, October 23rd, I went to see Dr. Harding for my rabies shot, and annual check up. I had been given a near complete good bill of health, and Sister sobbed tears of joy once we were in the privacy of our home. Thus, my family was puzzled by my sudden change.
Sister was stuck at her stupid job, so she could not accompany me to the vet. She was extremely worried, and Dad had to drive her into work in the morning, because she couldn't stop crying. She was fighting tears all day, and even answered her cell phone when her boss was behind her. She could care less about anything else when her Sister's health is in question.
I had a 2 o'clock appointment with Dr. Sam. Dad learned that I had three cracked ribs. Upon hearing this news, his mind was just swirling. There was no way that little Tux could have done the damage, and they think I must have hurt myself in my sleep or jumping on my chair. Injuries like mine go with the territory at age 17. There, I would stay until Mom and Sister came to pick me up at 5:30 pm. Meanwhile, Sister was trying not to have a panic attack while dealing with the stress of her occupation, and the weight of her heart.
Dr. Sam called our home to say that I had been given my first painkiller, and was back to eating! I even peed in my kennel. He said I was quite a tough cat. Dad left the message on Sister's cell phone and she was now crying tears of joy. I sure put her on an emotional rollercoaster!
What our parents didn't tell her in the phone message was that I had damage to my lungs. However, unlike our Kamara, the fluid was successfully drained from my lungs. Dr. Sam says that I will be able to pee the fluid out. For my comfort, my litter box has been placed beside my bed in the kitchen. My family will clean it even more religiously than before. They just want me to be comfortable.
Oh how my Sister did cry at the vet. Before I came out to be placed in her loving arms, Dr. Sam broke some bad news to my Mom and Sister. After three X-rays, they could clearly see my three broke ribs. There was a large blurry blob around my heart. As soon as that was pointed out, Sister's tears were falling and she shielded her face.
Although it has not yet been detected by the ultrasound I will have on Tuesday, it looks as if I have a heart tumor. This was the moment that Sister's heart started to break. Our Mom explained to Dr. Sam that I have been her cat since day one.
Dr. Sam was kind enough to repeat the requirements for my does of painkillers about 5 times. Sister had to write down the simplest of information as she could not even speak. Her voice was gone and no sound came out. She just nodded, as the tears rolled in the waiting room. All she wanted to do was pet the cute Pug she had just met in the waiting room. The healing love of an animal is what she needed at that moment, even if "Puggsy" didn't belong to her.
I was finally brought out to see my family. Sister stretched out her arms, and the vet assistance placed me on the strong quilt that Mom had brought from the car. My family kissed my head and Sister just burried her ears between my head. She told the assistant that she got me when she was seven, and was now twenty-four.
Mom drove so carefully back to our home. I was weezing as I breathed. This is related to why I have been coughing lately, but had always subsided, when Sister held my water bowl up to my sandpaper tongue. During my exam, we had been told that it was likely just a reflex cough. Now we all know better, and are worse for it.
This news has rocked my family's world. I was bought all kinds of wet food: kitten food, chickeny food, big cans, small cans, from the vet clinic. Sister had the task of cutting my tiny pills into quarters. She is just functioning like a robot, and her facial expressions are completely blank. Her appetite is gone, much like mine.
In a little while, our Dad will return home and she will have to give him the rest of my news. Tiny Brother Tux has been kept in a separate part of our house, so I can rest. All is not lost. I have always been a very strong cat. Please pray for me, and pray for time to be spent with my family. I don't want to leave them just yet.
August 22nd 2007 9:00 pm
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As of late, I have been consistently howling for my family’s constant and undivided attention. Sister sometimes responds by pulling up a chair next to her, so we can compose Catster requests and Pawmails together. However, this time she responded in a less intellectual (more instinctual) way.
Following a few snuggles and kisses, she left my side to head for the treat drawer in the kitchen. I stuck my face my food bowl in anticipation. But instead of a tasty treat, she let me have a few sniffs of my favourite toy. The sewn catnip pouch.
Sister thought that she would never be able to retrieve the pouch, from either my mouth or under my body. Dad proved her wrong by gently lifting me up to nab it from my possession. After having dealt with greedy Gem for so long, she tends to forget what a gentle cat I am.
Before I could completely soak the cloth cat nip pouch, Sister came up with the idea to clip it to a long lanyard. I had a great time batting it with my paw, and chasing after it. My family was so please to see how energetic I am for my age.
During our game, Sister was mentioning how I should be bought a new catnip toy. I can’t argue with that! I must say, I was getting a little be jealous yesterday when she spent all that time writing Chloe’s complete biography. Nevertheless, my family is all that and a bag of catnip!
June 13th 2007 11:08 pm
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Sister scooped me up in her arms, and brought me to our Dad so he could scratch under my chin. Whilst holding me she said “I can’t believe she’s the only one we have.” The only one meaning feline, as we still have the ever-aloof Gem.
She carefully put me down, and we sat playing on the living room rug. She stroked me, and we did our nuzzling and head butting thing. Sister had lots of my Tortoiseshell fur in on her face, and she exclaimed to our Dad how happy she was not to have pet allergies. Dad said “well, naturally.” He also made mention of how he brushes me everyday.
As Sister rubbed her face against the top of my head, I could feel dampness in between my ears. She didn’t make any noise, but I could sense that she was crying a little. We were playing near our Brother’s favourite spot in the house.
Sister was holding back a stream of tears, and I did my best to shed my coat so she could cite me as the reason for red puffy eyes. It’s amazing what we animals do for our human counterparts. Perhaps this is why my Sister loves me so much, and she cannot imagine living a day without me by her side. Sister was shedding tears over her love for me, and how lucky we are to have each other. I was shedding my coat all over the floor, and Sister brought me two treats from the kitchen drawer.
May 29th 2007 6:41 pm
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That's it! I, alone have been tagged 3 times. Charlie Clarence, Galena, and Chewbacca are all on standby, awaiting my illustrious response. I'm 17 years old, and I've earned the right to be a tad conceited. Enjoy!
Each player starts with seven random facts about themselves. Cats who are tagged need to write in their own diary about the seven things, along with the rules. You need to select seven cats to tag, and then list their names. Don't forget to leave them a comment (via P-mail) that they have been tagged, and that they must to read your diary.
7 Random Facts:
1. I am extremely vocal, and most humans are surprised by my unusual "meow".
2. Prior to turning deaf, I used to come running to my family whenever they sang "Olé, Olé, Olé, Oh Smudge!"
3. On the night of my adoption, our Dad was rushed to the hospital emergency room, where he was both diagnosed and operated on for colon cancer. The long winter walk to the petstore triggered something in his body.
4. I was trained to beg like a groundhog from a young age.
5. I will steal food off of your plate.
6. None of my siblings (aside from Gem) have been born in the same country.
7. I miss my brother, Kamara, more than I ever thought I would.
I tag the following cats on Catster:
Bastian, Truman, Ethan, Chloe, Petrie,
Emma, & Picasso
March 9th 2007 8:33 pm
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Words cannot express just how elated I am to have been named the Cat of the Day! Equally exciting is the outpouring of treats, visits, rosettes, and even a permanent star, that have now appeared on my page. My Sister is completely over the moon! She even took a screen shot of the Catster.com main page.
This honour could not have come at a more poignant time. Today marks the second week since we lost our brother, Kamara. On Tuesday, my Sister and Mom took Gem to get her claws trimmed, which she cries and whines about like a big baby. Alas, she wasn't the only one crying.
Sister walked in the door holding a brown gift bag, which had our Brother's name printed on a white label. The bag contained a small yet heavy stone urn, which holds Kamara's ashes. She had finally brought him home to be with his family.
Sister placed his urn on the fireplace mantel, so he could be in a safe place, not far from his favourite sleeping spot. Since our Brother is no longer with us (in the physical sense only), I have been sleeping on his couch. Sister took a cell phone camera photo of me resting there. She likes to document these occurrences to show our Dad when he returns home from Texas. I should also mention that Mom heard Kamara's faint "meow" when she walked into our Dad's room yesterday. I don't see what the big deal is. He never really left our family.
Sister wishes she had taken the time to make a video of Kamara for his Catster page. That's the trouble with life. We think we have all the time in the world for these things.
With that being said, I have thoroughly enjoyed my day as Catster's Cat of the Week. I can't believe Sister turned her computer off so early last night, and only on at 2 pm today! I hope our Brother caught her look of puzzlement when she wondered why her E-mail inbox was so crowded. I was snuggled up on the couch downstairs, so I had no clue until she told me. I am so touched by how many cats have requested our friendship. I am especially chuffed by those who also wish to befriend my Brother. We have already used up quite a few of our purchased Zealies, so I regret that some of the "thank you" rosettes will have to wait until we receive next months batch. Sister says that I am her "Cat of Eternity", so that's my story and I'm stickin' to it!
Thank you to both Catster's and Dogster's for your support, congratulations, condolences, friendship, and everything in between.
Tortoiseshell's in the house represent!
July 12th 2006 10:38 pm
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You are my Smudgey, my only Smudgey.
You make me happy when skies are grey.
You'll never know Squid, how much I love you.
Please don't take my Smudgey away.
I love you, girl. Words cannot express what you mean to me. We've been sisters for 16 years, and I hope the good Lord will give us many more together. I simply cannot imagine not having you by my side, fast asleep on top of me, or begging at the dinner table. You have been my best friend since I was 7, and you have seen me through many ups and some downs...Not to mention the countries we have visited. Your ability to sense my emotions is as unique as your Tortoiseshell markings.
It is true that I am incredibly biased towards you. I know that there will never be another family pet like you. You are more than just a cat to me; I know your soul, and you mine.
You are so intelligent. Not many other pets would be able to respond to half the number of nicknames bestowed upon you. Squid, you've surpassed the typical commands of "sit" and "come here". We communicate on the heart level.
Your years of devotion have seen me grow from an elementary school girl (where I made every teacher and student learn about you) to a university graduate. I still talk about you, and carry your photos with me.
Best of all, I carry you in my heart...and I want the world to know about it.
Gotta love the Supertouge! ♥
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