August 1st 2010 7:34 am
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Yesterday was my second birthday! It was a lot different from last year's birthday, mostly because I'm an angel now. Last year, mommy spoiled me with toys and hugs and kisses!
This year, I didn't get to be with mommy. At least not like I was last year. This year, mommy didn't get an e-mail from Catster wishing me a happy birthday, because once you go to the bridge, Catster doesn't recognize your birthday anymore. Then again, mommy didn't need an e-mail to remind her that it was my birthday. She remembered it all on her own, and always will.
I want to thank my aunties and uncles, all of my furriends, and my mommy for keeping my memory alive yesterday! Everyone kept saying how they heard thunder - well, that was me pawtying it up with my angel furriends! MOL! It was quite the pawty, and we had every type of food and drink imaginable! There is no way we will ever run out of anything at the bridge. Least of all, the love of our pawrents who love us.
I also want to give a special thanks to my new earth brother, Tailer Swish, for keeping mom laughing on a day that could have been very sad for her. I sure know how to pick 'em, don't I? :)
May 14th 2010 5:14 pm
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Mommy and I just wanted to thank all of my furriends and all of her friends for their messages, Catster gifts, real life gifts, cards, phone calls, virtual hugs, and good thoughts. We are totally overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and support that we have received from everyone. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.
Mommy would like to say something:
My heart was broken on May 4th, and I never could have made it through this past week and a half if it wasn't for all of you. I always knew that Catster was a caring, compassionate community, and you have proven just that.
When I adopted Tommy, he was a scared little kitten. I got him to trust me by patiently getting him used to my presence. One day, I took his dinner in to him and put it on the floor. I then proceeded to sit on the floor across the room from him and eat my own dinner. I edged my way closer and closer and eventually picked him up so that he was eating in my arms. That was the beginning, and he learned to trust me. We grew very close, and I came to get used to my nightly orange cuddles from my Honey Boy.
When I found out he had FeLV, I was devastated. His first vet suggested that I make him an angel right then and there. But instead, I brought him home and did research. With the help of his holistic vet, Dr. Nan, he thrived WAY past the year he was supposed to live.
He did very well up until January, when I noticed a scratch on his chin. That healed up very well, but at the end of January, he started having weird spells where he would hit his face. At first, I thought maybe it was an ear infection. His ears were fine, so we suspected dental trouble. I took him to a dental specialist, who gave him an antibiotic, which seemed to work, but only for a while.
He continued to slowly lose weight, and began to decline more rapidly at the end of April. I was very concerned, so I took him to Dr. Nan who confirmed that he had lost about 2 pounds. She drew blood, which showed that he was very anemic, he had low white blood cells, and a high ALT of 799. Being a nurse, I knew what all of this meant. The FeLV was affecting his blood counts and his liver. We started him on some supplements and planned to start LTCI, a treatment for FeLV, as soon as Dr. Nan could get it in.
During his last week, I did everything to try and get him to eat. I opened can after can of cat food, gave him tuna juice, chicken broth, baby food - anything to get some nourishment in him. It also made me very sad because this was my boy who used to be SO happy. So playful. So excited about eating. He used to come running down the hall if I so much as stepped foot in the kitchen. Now it was an accomplishment to get him to even look at food. I think the thing that bothered me most was that he had ceased to be happy. So you see, I started grieving the loss of my orange cuddlebug days before he actually went to the bridge. His life, as it had once been, was no longer. I knew, in my heart, that he would never again be the same.
He spent all day Monday on my bed, and wouldn't take even a bite of food. Then on Tuesday morning, I woke up and was shocked to find him in my spare bedroom, on his side on the floor. I saw that he was breathing, so I picked him up. His bottom was wet. He couldn't make it to the litterbox. I think this was when I realized what I had to do. He was so weak, too weak to take more than a couple steps. My sister called her vet for me since Dr. Nan wasn't going to be in until later, and I didn't want to go back to the first vet. She got us the first available appointment.
The vet looked him over and confirmed what I already knew - it was time to help Tommy go to the bridge. They took him out of the room and put a little IV catheter in him. Then they brought him back in and gave me some time with him. I told him he was going to go to sleep, and he wouldn't be sick anymore. I told him he was going to go be with Tabby, and her husband Boingo. I told him he wouldn't have FeLV anymore. Then the vet came back in, gave him his medicine, and I watched him drift off to a peaceful sleep.
Once again, now through tears, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for all of your love and support. I have a place all ready for him for when he comes home for good on Monday.
All my love,
Tommy's mom, Lisa
May 8th 2010 1:50 pm
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Mommy says this very well could have been written about me. Make sure your humans have lots of tissues before they read this!
YOU HAVE CHOSEN TEARS
The little orange boy stopped.
Behind him, kitties were playing, chasing each other and wrestling in the warm sunshine. It looked like so much fun, but in front of him, through the clear stillness of the pond's water, he could see his mommy. And she was crying. He pawed at the water, trying to get at her, and when that didn't work, he jumped into the shallow water. All that got him was wet and Mommy's image danced away in the ripples.
"Mommy!" he cried. "Is something wrong?" The little orange boy turned around.
A lady was standing at the edge of the pond, her eyes sad but filled with love. The little orange boy sighed and walked out of the water.
"There's been a mistake," he said. "I'm not supposed to be here." He looked back at the water. It was starting to still again and his mommy's image was coming back. "I'm just a baby. Mommy said it had to be a mistake. She said I wasn't supposed to come here yet."
The kind lady sighed and sat down on the grass. The little orange boy climbed into her lap. It wasn't Mommy's lap, but it was almost as good. When she started to pet him and scratch under his chin like he liked, he started to purr. He hadn't wanted to, but he couldn't help it.
"I'm afraid there is no mistake. You are supposed to be here and your mommy knows it deep down in her heart," the lady said.
The little orange boy sighed and laid his head on the lady's leg. "But she's so sad. It hurts me to see her cry. And daddy too."
"But they knew right from the beginning this would happen."
"That I was sick?" That surprised the little orange boy. No one had ever said anything and he had listened when they thought he was sleeping. All he had heard them talk about was how cute he was, or how fast he was or how big he was getting.
"No, not that you were sick," the lady said. "But you see, they chose tears."
"No, they didn't," the little orange boy argued. Who would choose to cry?
The lady gently brushed the top of his head with a kiss. It made him feel safe and loved and warm - but he still worried about his mommy.
"Let me tell you a story," the lady said. The little orange boy looked up and saw other animals gathering around. Cats - Big Boy and Snowball and Shamus and Abby and little Cleo and Robin. Merlin and Toby and Iggy and Zachary. Sweetie and Kamatte and OBie. Dogs too- Sally and Baby and Morgan and Rocky and Belle. Even a lizard named Clyde and some rats named Saffron and Becky and a hamster named Odo. They all lay down near the kind lady and looked up at her, waiting.
She smiled at them and began:
A long long time ago, the Loving Ones went to the Angel in Charge. They were lonesome and asked the Angel to help them. The Angel took them to a wall of windows and let them look out the first window at all sorts of things - dolls and stuffed animals and cars and toys and sporting events. "Here are things you can love," the Angel said. "They will keep you from being lonesome."
"Oh, thank you," the Loving Ones said. "These are just what we need."
"You have chosen Pleasure," the Angel told them.
But after a time the Loving Ones came back to the Angel in Charge. "Things are okay to love," they said. "But they don't care that we love them."
The Angel in Charge led them over to the second window. It looked out at all sorts of wild animals. "Here are animals to love," he said. "They will know you love them."
So the Loving Ones hurried out to care for the wild animals. "You have chosen Satisfaction," the Angel said.
Some of the Loving Ones worked at zoos and wild animal preserves, some just had bird feeders in their yards, but after a time they all came back to the Angel in Charge. "They know we love them," they told the Angel. "But they don't love us back. We want to be loved in return."
So the Angel took them to the third window and showed them lots of people walking around, hurrying places. "Here are people for you to love," the Angel told them.
So the Loving Ones hurried off to find other people to love. "You have chosen Commitment," the Angel said.
But after a time a lot of Loving Ones came back to the Angel in Charge. "People were okay to love," they said. "But sometimes they stopped loving us and left. They broke our hearts."
The Angel just shook his head. "I cannot help you," he said. "You will have to be satisfied with the choices I gave you."
As the Loving Ones were leaving, someone saw a window off to one side and hurried to look out. Through it, they could see puppies and kittens and dogs and cats and lizards and hamsters and ferrets. The other Loving Ones hurried over. "What about these?" they asked.
But the Angel just tried to shoo them away. "Those are Personal Empathy Trainers," he said. "But there's a problem with their system operations."
"Would they know that we love them?" someone asked.
"Yes," the Angel said.
"Would they love us back?" another asked.
"Yes," the Angel said.
"Will they stop loving us?" someone else asked.
"No," the Angel admitted. "They will love you forever."
"Then these are what we want," the Loving Ones said.
But the Angel was very upset. "You don't understand," he told them. "You will have to feed these animals."
"That's all right," the Loving Ones said.
"You will have to clean up after them and take care of them forever."
"We don't care."
The Loving Ones did not listen. They went down to where the Pets were and picked them up, seeing the love in their own hearts reflected in the animals' eyes.
"They were not programmed right," the Angel said. "We can't offer a warranty. We don't know how durable they are. Some of their systems malfunction very quickly, others last a long time."
But the Loving Ones did not care. They were holding the warm little bodies and finding their hearts so filled with love that they thought they would burst. "We will take our chances," they said.
"You do not understand." The Angel tried one more time. "They are so dependent on you that even the most well-made of them is not designed to out live you. You are destined to suffer their loss."
The Loving Ones looked at the sweetness in their arms and nodded. "That is how it should be. It is a fair trade for the love they offer."
The Angel just watched them all go, shaking his head. "You have chosen Tears," he whispered.
"So it is," the kind lady told the kitties. "And so each mommy and daddy knows. When they take a baby into their heart, they know that one day it will leave them and they will cry."
The little orange boy sat up. "So why do they take us in?" he asked.
"Because even a moment of your love is worth years of pain later."
The little orange boy got off the lady's lap and went back to the edge of the pond. His mommy was still there, and still crying.
"Will she ever stop crying?" he asked the kind lady.
She nodded. "You see, the Angel felt sorry for the Loving Ones, knowing how much they would suffer. He couldn't take the tears away but he made them special."
She dipped her hand into the pond and let the water trickle off her fingers. "He made them healing tears, formed from the special water here. Each tear holds bits of all the happy times of purring and petting and shared love. And the promise of love once again. As your mommy cries, she is healing. It may take a long while, but the tears will help her feel better. In time she will be less sad and she will smile when she thinks of you. And then she will open her heart again to another little baby."
"But then she will cry again one day," the little orange boy said.
The lady just smiled at him as she got to her feet. "No, she will love again. That is all she will think about." She picked up Big Boy and Snowball and gave them hugs, then scratched Morgan's ear just how she liked.
"Look," she said. "The butterflies have come. Shall we go over to play?"
The other animals all ran ahead, but the little orange boy wasn't ready to leave his mommy. "Will I ever get to be with her again?"
The kind lady nodded. "You'll be in the eyes of every kitty she looks at. You'll be in the purr of every cat she pets. And late at night, when she's fast asleep, your spirit will snuggle up close to her and you both will feel at peace. One day soon, you can even send her a rainbow to tell her you're safe and waiting here for when it's her turn to come."
"I would like that," the little orange boy said and took one long look at his mommy. He saw her smile slightly through her tears and he knew she had remembered the time he almost fell into the bathtub. "I love you, Mommy," he whispered. "It's okay if you cry."
He glanced over at the other pets, running and playing and laughing with the butterflies. "Uh, Mommy? I gotta go play now, okay? But I'll be around, I promise."
Then he turned and raced after the others.