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Chandlers_Dad

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Reply with quote  #256 
Purzel,

Many, many wordless hugs to you, too. Wishing you many wonderful dreams as well. Time softens the pain whether we want it to or not, but it doesn't touch the love. Nothing can do that, my friend.
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Chandlers_Dad

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Reply with quote  #257 
Marie,

You are just awesome. I could write volumes to you but "awesome" says it all. Hugs to you, my dear friend.

Bruce
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Catherine76

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Reply with quote  #258 
Bruce, thank you for the kind words. It's good to know there are others dealing with this. I'll try to get a few things out about my girl. It's hard to do without bawling and having the tears cloud up my vision. I adopted Banshee at 9 weeks old in the spring of 2001. She was such a little fluffball, she used to sit in the palm of my hand. She's part Maine Coon so she got much bigger and even fluffier. She has that neck ruff that makes her look like a little lion, with orange and white markings. She just understood me, knew what what I was feeling. I was in graduate school at the time, which was stressful, and she was such a source of joy and comfort. She would play with feet under my desk while I wrote papers, or if I was sad or anxious I would just cradle her and snuggle her. She would drape herself on me, she didn't even mind if I cried into her fur. She's been my constant companion, I talk to her all the time, she's always nearby. She looks directly in my eyes, and just listens. If I was away she'd always be thrilled to have me back. i know some cats can hold a grudge for a little while that you were gone, but never her, she just wanted immediate hugs and snuggles. Sometimes she wouldn't even eat her food unless I stood there petting her and telling her about my trip. Today she is 17 years, 7 months, and 7 days old. The hospice vet is coming later in the day. She is struggling so much, she has an enormous bladder tumor that will soon cause a complete blockage. it's not treatable, and she also has kidney disease, which we have been managing ok, and cysts on her kidneys, and what looks like an adrenal tumor, and a heart murmur. All we have been able to do for the last few weeks is manage her pain with meds. She barely eats, she's weak, she's skin and bones, she is constantly in and out of her litter box. It's been breaking my heart to watch her like this and I know we have to let her be free. I pray I am doing the right thing for my girl. I haven't been going to work, I just stay with her, give her meds, watch her for any sign of distress. She still comes to me in the middle of the night and lies across my chest, I know she knows I am sad and she wants to comfort me. Even feeling terrible as she does, she uses her stairs to get up on the bed and she comforts me. She lies with her heart right over my heart. Please, my beautiful girl, know how much I love you. I don't know how I will survive without you.
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Chandlers_Dad

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Reply with quote  #259 
My dear Catherine, I apologize for the delay in my response. My heart truly goes out to you. It has been 9 days since you posted, and I am sick with worry about what you have been going through. Banshee sounds so much like a little angel -- or a big angel -- in your life. There's no describing what our babies mean to us. Their love is unconditional, and so is ours for them. Nothing helps, or at least we don't believe it does, when we are faced with losing them. They are pure, they are without malice, and their love is as true as it gets. They know our love; trust me on this. I truly think they have a greater understanding of unconditional love than we could ever have. They don't know evil.. just love and survival. If they've felt our love, that's all they need. Wrapping my arms around you and your pain right now.
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Catherine76

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Reply with quote  #260 
Thank you, Bruce. Each day without her is like a dagger in my heart. I need one of her cuddly hugs so badly. Before she passed I bought a plush stuffed animal cat that looks like her. I carry it with me all over the house, talk to it, sleep with it. I reach for her in the morning in her favorite spot right next to my pillow. Instead I cry on the plush cat. It's unbelievable that she isn't here. She has been by my side for so long. She made me a better person, a complete person. I am just a fragment without her. I must have told her a thousand times in her last week how much I love her and everything she meant to me. When I knew we were coming close to being separated I started this big document full of anecdotes, memories, and everything I love about her. I read the whole thing to her. And since she's been gone I think of something else to add every day. But I think the thing that scares me most is that I don't know how to survive without this kind of love in my life. Some days having to her cuddle and be with is all that got me through. I hope against hope that the pain gets more dull with time. Right now life feels completely meaningless without her. Have you found anything at all to help, besides time?
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Marie123

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Reply with quote  #261 
Thank you, Bruce. I apologize for being late in replying but it's been an insane couple of weeks. The water heater needed replacing along with a bunch of other homeowner related nonsense so between going to Lowe's and the bank and taking care of my zoo I've barely had time to breathe. Now that it's calmed down I can catch up and just wanted to thank you for your kind thoughts. I hope that you and India are doing well. It's cold here and we got a dusting of snow last night and I'm all just like ew ew ew get it away! 😊 A far cry from when I was younger that's for sure haha!
And Catherine, hugs and prayers go out to you losing your beautiful Banshee. I absolutely love the name! My girl Raven has been gone for just over a year and a half, and I wish I could say it gets better. In truth, it's more like losing a limb and having to learn to adapt. That's it. You adapt. Some days you feel as if you're ok, you've got this, but on others, it's like being hit by a train. And everyone handles it differently. What works for one may not do much for another. One of the things I did shortly after Raven and I said our goodbyes was I wrote her a letter, telling her why I made the choice to let her go, and how much I love her. Then I read it aloud. Also, on days I particularly miss her, I light her candle (a battery operated tea light in a special holder, really, so my remaining cats don't tip it!) These are just a couple things I do, but it helps, if only a bit. Coming here and talking helps a lot. On some days the people here are the only ones I do talk to because my other friends seem to have forgotten all about her. If only they would say her name now and then! I also tell my lost animals good morning and good night, ask them for help, thank them for asking God to bring good things to me. It helps, but there's days when you'd rather have them in your arms, instead of your heart.
Hugs to you, and to everyone here. I may not be much help but I can listen because I know what this pain is like 💔🐱
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Chandlers_Dad

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Reply with quote  #262 
I am so sorry it has been a while since I have been here. Like I have said before, sometimes life just gets in the way.

In a few days, Phoebe will have been gone a year. Chandler has been gone 20 months. I miss them so much -- oh, how much I miss them -- but life has this way of making you go on. I still have their feisty mother, India, who somehow has become a playful little kitten again. 16 years old and she is as playful and energetic as when she showed up on my patio many, many years ago.

Hold on, everyone. It does get better, but that does NOT mean we love our departed babies any less. We will love them to the end of time. It just means we can carry our love for them forward. It will always hurt, and it should. But moving onward through life is their legacy.

Bless you all.

Bruce
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sma23

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Reply with quote  #263 
Hi, Bruce. It’s good to hear from you, and yes, life does get in the way. I’ve been busy in the last few months with my education.

It seems as thought you had created this post yesterday wracked with grief, but it evolved into not only helping yourself heal, but others as well. I’m grateful this post was created, so thank you for that. I’m amazed India, at her age, is still playful and energetic. Going strong. For me, it’ll be a year in a month and two weeks since Ziggy had to be put down. Everyday, I miss him more and more. His sister, Zoey, has been making efforts to be more affectionate. She turns 12 this July.

Hoping all of you are doing well in your lives without your companions! They are watching over us.
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Marie123

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Reply with quote  #264 
Hi, Bruce! It's so great to hear from you! And I'm so happy to hear that India is doing so well. I know what you mean about life getting in the way. It's been one thing after another here, especially with the bitter cold here in Missouri. It's like Mother Nature is really mad at us and keeps storming out of the room and then she comes back yelling "And another thing!" Having my crew here has mostly been a blessing, even though the new cat Freddy and Argento fight constantly. Little Roswell is doing great, and Curtis the bunny has been filling my days with laughter. I like to go up to the rescue I got him from to help unload hay, buy his supplies, and visit the other rabbits. Having him in my life has been sort of a turning point. While I still miss Raven and the others, I believe they sent this rabbit to me, to remind me to love again, and move forward.
Give India a big hug from us all. I'm so thrilled to hear she's feeling so good. I've been thinking about you guys these past long, cold months. Stay strong, and may the love these gentle souls who have shared our lives, and always will, continue to move you forward.
Love from us all,
Marie and the crew! 🐰😺🐌🦎🐞
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Chandlers_Dad

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Reply with quote  #265 
Thank you, sma and Marie!

It helps more than you know that others have been going through this. With your loved ones, you have traveled this road. It hurts, it sucks, and yet we have to move on. Some days we don't even think we can do it.

But we do. I am not sure how, but we do. I lost pets as a child, but Chandler and Phoebe were different. And I know when India goes I will curl up in a fetal position underneath the table! Seriously, they have taught me to love in a different way than I thought possible. A deeper way.

I still can't get over the changes in India. After Phoebe died I was super paranoid about everything that looked "off" with India. Now she is bouncy, vibrant, happy and playful. Actually, she is downright ornery! And spoiled. Oh how that little brat has become spoiled. And I wouldn't have it any other way!

Thanks for being there. You're in my thoughts and I hope you are well. I am so happy for this place where I can ramble and not be judged for it. And you can do the same to me. :-)
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Marie123

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Reply with quote  #266 
Thank you too, Bruce and sma! It's so true. Animals have a way of teaching us what love is, and can become. Grief is simply love that has nowhere to go, and having to deal with that can be exhausting, frustrating, and downright infuriating. I know I've changed a great deal, but pain does that to you. I know my friends have noticed. A couple of months after Raven had to go, my friend told me I needed to "pull myself out of this." When I said I didn't know if I could, she replied"I don't know how much more of this I can take." I've never said a word to her about how that made me feel, or to anyone else, except here, to you guys. This is indeed the one place we can go, to cry, to vent, to air our grievances, and not be judged. It's a little refuge from the judgemental eyes of the world, and I'm thankful for that, and for you.
I'm so happy India is doing so well! I hear you loud and clear about the paranoia, I still have it with the other cats, and Curtis, the rabbit I adopted last summer. Especially Curtis, because bunnies have different needs than cats, so at first I panicked over every little thing. I still do worry but not as much, but he's a healthy rabbit and I'm doing my best to give him the right diet (hay is crucial) and it's just a blast having him here! Like India, he's spoiled rotten! And so is my remaining female cat Roswell, who's now the princess. They certainly color our lives with laughter, don't they? We'd sure have boring lives without them that's for sure.
Take care, both of you. May the love of our friends, our babies, always surround us, moving us forward through the pain, so that we can live again and become even better, stronger, and pass the love on.
Hugs to all! 💕😺🐰
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sma23

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Reply with quote  #267 
Bruce and Marie, I do agree with you that animals have a way of teaching us. I’ve always known myself to be a cat person, even though my family and I had a dog for 15 years. When we got Zoey, (she was the first we adopted), I wasn’t sure how to accommodate to having a cat, and it wasn’t until we got Ziggy almost 3 weeks later that he and I began a deep bond. He and I had 10 great years together - even I tried to give my attention to Zoey, but he, he was just my fur child, y’know?

I was devastated when I learned there was nothing more we could do for him in his last few hours of life, despite our best efforts. I cried for several days, I wasn’t sure how I’d be able to recuperate and getting another cat exactly like him. I still am hesitant to get another cat. But I’ve gotten better in my grief... a lot better actually, although I’ve since stopped giving updates to him on how life was without him due to my school schedule of homework and tests through his old collar. Does that make me a bad person?

Marie, what kind of a rabbit is Curtis? I do know they have more specific needs (I feel you on that ‘hay is critical’ part) though. Hope you two take care of yourselves, our companions are always there for us and helping us heal.
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Marie123

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Reply with quote  #268 
Hey there, sma! Sounds like you've been busy too. I still talk to Raven and the rest, but thankfully I don't break down as often. It's still there, like a poorly healed broken bone, or closer still, a missing limb, but I guess you just have to learn to go on with the pain. I don't know, it's weird...🤷
Curtis is a breed known as a Californian rabbit, or a California White. He's white with dark brown markings almost like a Siamese cat, but he's got pink and red eyes. I adopted him from our local House Rabbit Chapter, and haven't regretted it for a second! He gets a small amount of pelleted food each day, a couple handfuls of leafy greens (carrots are just a treat, not a staple. If anything, he actually prefers bananas!) and lots of timothy hay, all he wants. The hay is that important to a rabbit's diet. The place I got him from teaches a fantastic orientation class, and there's folks you can contact for any questions you have. They've also got a great exotics-savvy vet, which was a relief because finding a vet who knew rabbits was my main reason for balking at getting one. He's now more like a spoiled 2yo than a bunny. I don't think my heart will ever heal completely, but Curtis has definitely taught me to laugh again, and not to be afraid to love another lonely animal who is just as deserving as Raven is, and will always be.
Ziggy will always be with you, and who knows? Maybe when the time is right he'll guide you to a new friend who desperately needs you. I think they know when it's time, and send just the right animal at just the right moment. They'll always be our guardian angels, guiding us through the rough days ahead.
I'll try to post a picture of Curtis, so you can see his handsome mug 😀

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Purzel

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Reply with quote  #269 
Hi there Bruce,

So good to hear from you again. And so good to hear that India has turned into a joyful and playful ole lady - this is so nice to hear. Even tho you miss your two beloved ones and always will, it is good to know that India is there with you and you can spoil her, lol.

My good thoughts are with you and I send many wordless hugs

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sma23

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Reply with quote  #270 
Marie, that rabbit is beautiful! I’ve come across rabbits and have admired them, but knowing the amount of care they need, I haven’t considered getting one at all. Still, it’s amazing the time people can put aside to care for their bunnies. I can tell Curtis is very happy. He’s a lucky rabbit to have you.

That’s true, I still have a sense of emptiness whenever my eyes set on his old collar sitting on my shelf, thankfully though, I don’t break down often as well. School definitely has taken up my time with late night studying and essays, so I haven’t had the time to talk to him. Maybe. I do eventually want to get another pet, but I’m not sure when.

Many thanks for your kind words!
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