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Thursday of this week, I had no options for my beloved kitty of the past eleven years. Sometime last year a silent cancer (fibrosarcoma) manifested in her mouth and only eight weeks ago, did she show visible symptoms.

Miss Kitty had the heart of a lion, and persevered during her last two weeks with the aid of opiates and in-home vet care. With the ultimate responsibility resting on my shoulders, decisions weighed heavily. Our last ten days together were spent doing all Miss Kitty’s favorite things-sunbathing in the newly mowed grass, hiding amongst the tall patch of tiger lilies, playing hide and seek, presenting her toy mouse to me many times per day, and quality naps on the heating pad. Even her appetite improved the final week, making my choice even more difficult.

quality nap time during happier days

quality nap time during happier days

With steady hand, we traveled to our vet for a sedated exam and a possible dentistry. My hopes were high, as recovery had not yet been ruled out. Fate quickly intervened as her vet showed me an image of her upper gum line, an image too gruesome for words. Extraordinary surgery was offered, yet with no chance of a full recovery, and painful post-op, we mutually decided euthanasia was the kindest alternative.

my best friend and editor...Miss Kitty

my best friend and editor…Miss Kitty

My final words were spoken to my love, companion, my angel, my muse as the fatal dose was administered and she peacefully slipped away. Carefully wrapped in a towel placed in her favorite bed, we returned home. Saying my final goodbye before closing the box was not as difficult as returning to the house alone, now devoid of my significant other. Working from home this past decade allowed the opportunity for us to fully bond with connections that ran deep. I wanted to run and never return.

Miss Kitty will be privately cremated and return home to rest in a soapstone urn, carved with Celtic symbols, given to us by her godmother.

Friday I could not speak without sobbing and wailing, and could find no comfort in daily life. Finally, a phone call from a blessed friend assured me that “gratitude is greater than grief” and Miss Kitty’s message to me was to think of her as a “voluptuous being” who chose me (“Damn right, I did!”) and to know that beneath the horrible pain of loss rests the eternal love we shared for over a decade.

“Sweet is the breath of vernal shower.
The bee’s collected treasures sweet.
Sweet music’s melting fall, but sweeter yet:
The still small voice of gratitude.”
~Thomas Gray

Copyright © 2011 by Diane LaSauce All Rights Reserved