Archive for the ‘Animal Shelters’ Category

Surviving

June 2, 2010

It has been a few days since I last posted and I am sorry about that.   I am still in mourning and I am quite sure that it will be some time before I am quite right again.  I am trying to move forward, just as my sweet Abbie would want me to do, because she hated it when I was sad.

Our top post has been “Lessons from Good NCO’s.”  Apparently, soldiers on line are hitting on the link when they are searching for information on Military NCO’s.  This blog may not yield much at all but if just a few young soldiers can learn the lessons I learned from some great NCO’s…then I can’t really complain.

If you are a regular reader…please don’t abandon Brigid and I.  I know there hasn’t been much “fresh” information but the things I am experiencing right now I don’t know how to talk about.  Or maybe, I do know how to talk about them but I just don’t want to end up in a padded cell.  For anyone who has never loved an animal…then none of this makes sense.  But for anyone who has ever found a “soul-mate” of sorts in a furry head and wide eyes…you understand.  If a hard night has ever been made soft and sweet by a rough tongue and fur up your nose…you know how I feel and you know how deep my sense of loss is.

I have four other cats…they are all precious in their own way…except for my husband’s cat, Annie.  She hates me and I don’t really care for her 😉  That is not really true, she is just a one person cat and that one person is my husband. 

We have made a couple of stops out at the local shelter and we are stopping at another one tonight.  In some ways it is about finding a “new” Abbie – but not really.  What it is about is honoring her memory by giving another lost and lonely kitty the great home that Abbie had. 

I have just decided to mourn her like I would mourn a person.  To do anything else is just not realistic.  She was precious and she had a wonderful spirit.  Do I believe that animals go to heaven?  Yes, I do.  I have to in order to survive.  It seems stupid and it seems childish but I can’t help but think of Abbie running up and slapping a piece of meat off St. Peter’s plate.  (she had a particularly fine skill for this and one day she drug off a 16 oz ribeye out of a sink full of water inside of a freezer bag.  The steak weighed almost as much as she did!) 

Well, I just can’t talk about this much more without crying.  Anyway, I thank you for your patience.  Hang with me…I hope to return to our regularly scheduled broadcast soon.

Blessings,

Joan

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Goodnight, sweet Abbie

May 28, 2010

I lost a precious, precious friend today.  I held her in my arms as she breathed her very last.  I stroked her and told her it was okay to let go…to release the last of the pain.  I told her I would be okay without her…but I lied.

Abbie Gail was the coolest cat in the whole world.  She came out of the local shelter.  In fact, she picked me out.  I had gone in the cage almost 5 years ago to get my daughter when this furry little gray cat with light in her eyes climbed me like I was a cheap set of Salvation Army curtains. 

5 years ago my Cuddles had just died.  Cuddles would lay with me and we would read books and take our Sunday afternoon snooze together.  I was still mourning Cuddles when this evil gray beast crawled into my heart.

Abbie was my unofficial “therapy” cat.  She seemed to know what I was feeling the moment I was feeling it.  She was evil to the core – and loved anything “people” food.  She knew how to make me laugh.  She knew how to bring me comfort.  I hadn’t had Abbie very long when I had to have a serious set of oral surgery – thanks to a stupid resident that messed up a tooth pull – and I fear dental work more than anything else.  The whole week that I was laying in bed in horrible pain she would come up on my lap and nudge her nose under my hand and she would rest there until the pain medication took effect.  She brought me more comfort and peace than all the Vicodan in the world!

Three days ago she just didn’t look right.  She seemed tired and “off.”  Two days ago we noticed her hind legs seemed weak.  Yesterday, we called the vet for an emergency appointment this morning.  I figured it was a urinary tract infection or a small stroke.  Something relatively minor that could be cured.  Abbie was always high strung and wild in her nature and she could get sick so easy. 

I called our vet to check in at 11:30 – by 1:15 she was gone. 

“It’s not good…it’s a tumor…it’s massive.”

Cancer?  Can we operate?  Maybe it’s not a tumor?  We have to try!  Not my Abbie – Oh, God…Not my Abbie!

“No hope.  Suffering…in pain.  Maybe it’s time to consider letting her go?”

I don’t want to let go!  I don’t want to lose my Abbie!  Please, God!  I need a miracle.

This wouldn’t hurt any less…even if it could be explained.

I held her in my arms as the sedation took hold.  I held her through the seizure…she never felt it…but I did.  I held her like she “held” me through so many days and so many nights.  The first shot to stop her heart missed the mark and she just kept breathing.  She kept fighting.  It’s okay, baby girl, just let go.  The second shot must have gone directly into the heart…it was over in a second.  In a second.

Why today of all days?  5 years ago today my Cuddles died…today – my Abbie died.  Why today?

Goodnight, sweet Abbie.  You were there with me on some of the worst days of my life.  Why we only had 5 years I will never know or truly understand.  There will never be another cat that touches my heart the way that you did.  I love you – I will always love you – rest well and be at peace in the arms of Jesus.  I will see you at Heaven’s gate.

Joan