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#444657 - 08/19/13 03:15 AM Kitty Saved My Life
Lancer Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
I debated putting this in the Off Topic forum, but as I thot about it, seems it belongs here. I lost my longest lived cat, Ricky, last week. And he saved my life.

When I've been at my worst, overwhelmed and, yes, suicidal (especially a couple times the past few of years...I'm NOT there now), this little guy was sometimes the only reason I decided to stick around. I knew he was getting older, so I made a promise to him (and to myself), I would be with him until the end...which came Wednesday the 14th, just five days ago, at 16 years old.

So many details to fill in, but I'll try to keep it brief. I've had nine cats over 26 years, two distinct "families". His "family" overlapped with the last survivor of the first family, Adam (on the right, pic below with Ricky). So, he was the last connection I felt I had to any of them. When Ricky lost the last of his family seven years ago, I knew he wouldn't tolerate a new kitty and I made sure I respected that. He flew solo with me. So that loss is particularly rough. And it's the first time in 26 years I haven't had a feline friend under my roof. As I told another member, the silence is deafening.


After I got sick in '01 and lost everything the following year, Adam and the second group were the only reason I didn't off myself. I could not imagine abandoning them like that, all the confusion and fear it would cause them, etc. Oh, they'd survive like I did. But not well.

In short, these guys literally saved my life. In return, I made sure I was the best cat daddy I could be. And it helped that I work out of my home, so it wasn't like I'd disappear for hours almost every day. They knew I'd be here.

Right now I feel like a ship without an anchor. The sobbing jags come and go. Had a large shoot last week, so I had to keep it together to get the job done. Just as well I was distracted. And, looking at the pictures of these guys over the years, despite the sobbing it brings on, I'm particularly grateful for my craft.

But it's been an awful and awfully quiet weekend. Much of it has been decided which reminders are okay to have out and which need to be put away for now. And I'll likely tackle his cremation tomorrow if I'm up to it.

I'll fill in more as I'm able, but had to post to get it off my chest.

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#444658 - 08/19/13 03:44 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
peroperic2009 Offline
Moderator
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/09/11
Posts: 3599
Loc: South-East Europe
Hi Lancer,
I'm so sorry to hear about your loss.
Adam and Ricky are so cute on that photo. I can imagine how are you feeling at the moment...

Hang on

((((Lancer))))
_________________________
My story

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#444659 - 08/19/13 03:52 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
victor-victim Offline


Registered: 09/27/03
Posts: 3007
Loc: O Kanada
my condolences for your loss.

if you love your cat like we do in our family,
it ain't easy to say good-bye to a good friend.

our dear "stubby" is very near the end of his healthy life.
we got him when my kids were preschool,
now my oldest is in her graduation year.
we have no idea how old he was when he 'strayed' into our life.
we don't know how much time we have left.
he is still affectionate, but no longer playful.
he is getting clumsy and weak.
he limps and sleeps and eats and cuddles.

your story has me feeling sad.
not looking forward to the inevitable.
_________________________
Victor|Victim

War
Love
Poetry

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#444678 - 08/19/13 11:20 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Chase Eric Offline
Moderator
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 1276
Lancer, I am so sorry for your loss. The gentle presence of pets in our lives (and I am very much a "cat" person, too) keeps us in touch with the things that really matter - simple and unconditional love (as much a cliche as that has become, it is so very true).

I lost my 22 year old cat not too long ago, and realized that she was the living connection to my history, my emergence into adulthood. Relationships have come and gone, jobs and schooling have altered my professional role in society, old friends have disappeared and new ones have filled the void, and I have moved all around this country. In a world full of variables and uncertainty, she was a constant. In the midst of changes all around and within me, she never did. She was the presence that kept me emotionally grounded, and no matter how my day went, when I walked in the door coming home, the only thing that mattered to her was that I came back to her.

And in my toughest times, just allowing for the briefest moment to exchange my priorities with hers - to look in her big, glassy eyes and lose myself in her little world - gave me peace and the strength to return to my own.

She WAS home, I suppose.

The goodbyes in life are so tough. I've lost my father to a sudden, unexpected death. I may be losing my mother to Alzheimer's - a slow and difficult goodbye. I lost my best friend to suicide. And I lost my cat. And if you asked me to quantify each as if I could apportion the grief, I honestly could not tell you how those scales would balance. My mother, my father, my best friend, my cat - perhaps the heart just doesn't measure things like our minds think it should.

If it helps, it does get better. The emotional wounds heal, we learn to accept. I am sure you know that, but I think it still helps to hear it. Ricky is gone. The pain you feel is just the love that remains - the love you built over almost 17 years. In my experience, that love mellows into a true and gentle part of us. A part of Ricky stays with you as long as you open your heart and keep him there.
_________________________



Click my pic to see why I'm here

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#444703 - 08/19/13 04:44 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Thanks for the notes guys. Loved what you said Eirik: "And in my toughest times, just allowing for the briefest moment to exchange my priorities with hers - to look in her big, glassy eyes and lose myself in her little world - gave me peace and the strength to return to my own." Summarizes my experience. Wow. 22 years! You were indeed blessed buddy.

Cremation arrangements today were awful and I'm going to take a break. Local Humane Society hires clueless little robot teens who can't handle the workload and have no sense of priorities. (HS priority, I found out, is to take care of those with dead pets first, no matter who's in line). I'd managed to barely hold it together during the drive with Ricky carefully bundled in his favorite towel on the seat next to me while I held his little paw. But cradling his little body in my arms while waiting on some stupid kid was too much and we both left because I had to have a good cry in the car.

My vet wanted a full third more for cremation. Period. I walked out. (And I'm finding another vet when I get the new feline family).

Came back home emotionally exhausted. Ricky still bundled. Called the Humane Society and made a complaint (i.e., "What is WRONG with you people?"). Their administrator, God bless her, was none too happy with the story and told me she'd make sure someone was there to handle it as it should be done, and as they had done it when I lost two others seven years ago...but I dealt with adults that time.

Another half hour drive back, but it went smoothly. Nevertheless, it was all I could do to maintain some shaky composure behind sunglasses. Of course the dam burst when I got back into the car with his towel.

I think I'm done for the day. Hell.

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#444708 - 08/19/13 05:59 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
BraveFalcon Offline
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Registered: 02/25/13
Posts: 1087
Loc: The ATL

Hi Lancer. Man I can feel the pain in your posts here in this thread and believe me, I know that pain all to well. It's making me tear up as I write this. I had two sweet babies that I lost a little over two years ago. They were both very old and died within a month of each other. It hurt so much. Don't feel bad about any public displays of emotion either. I had both of those cats cremated and fucking lost it both times when I went in to pick up their ashes. I didn't make it back to the car before that happened. I cried right there in the place in front of the people who worked there.

Stay strong friend. You will always miss and remember your Ricky but the grief and pain will subside. We are here for you until then. Take care. Peace,

Ken

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#444713 - 08/19/13 06:28 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: BraveFalcon]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
You reminded me to correct my post. In fact my dam burst in the parking lot...tears rolling from behind the sunglasses. Damn.

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#444720 - 08/19/13 07:45 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
bodyguard8367 Offline
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Registered: 05/16/12
Posts: 1159
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""


Edited by bodyguard8367 (02/27/14 06:53 PM)

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#444724 - 08/19/13 07:54 PM ! [Re: Lancer]
Smalltown80sBoy Offline
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Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 2217
!


Edited by Smalltown80sBoy (02/28/14 09:27 PM)

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#444740 - 08/19/13 11:27 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
ThisMan Offline
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Registered: 01/22/13
Posts: 767
Loc: upper south
((((Lancer))))....

I am sorry Ricky is no longer with you. Cry all you want, when you want, where you want. I lost my best animal friend of 13 years two days after the spouse died. I have yet to cry. It's part of my fucked up non-emotional state the T points out every dang week... so cry all you want. Its what we are supposed to do when we lose someone we love. And the tribute- so full of love and devotion- was just beautiful.

Thanks for sharing and will be thinking about you.
_________________________
For now we see through a glass, darkly.



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#444763 - 08/20/13 05:46 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Oh, y'know TM, it comes and goes. I was cried out earlier. But haven't been able to sleep tonite. Eventually I'll doze off.

I've pulled out a few of Ricky's things - brush, comb - I'd put away earlier because those are the best reminders for me right now. Just enough not to be overwhelming and I keep 'em in the bed with me.

On the positive side, if a new (adult) family is in the cards later rather than sooner, I think I'd be good as a foster cat daddy in the meantime for one of the furballs recovering from surgery, or a mommy cat who needs a safe place for her litter for a few weeks. I guess I need them as much as they need me.

Oh dammit. Gonna cry again...

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#444778 - 08/20/13 10:22 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Jude Offline


Registered: 08/09/12
Posts: 1469
Loc: New England
We all need something/someone to hold on to for however many years we are given. You have served Ricky well. Be well Lancer.
_________________________
"But now old friends are acting strange,
they shake their heads, they say I've changed.
Something's lost but something's gained in living every day
....it's life's illusions I recall, I really don't know life at all. "
Joni Mitchell

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#444871 - 08/20/13 10:17 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Did the no-kill shelter tour (well, two of 'em) today just to get my dose of adult feline. At least two Ricky lookalikes immediately glommed on to me. Felt good to touch that same fur again...though more talkative personalities. Another decided I was filthy and needed a serious wash. And there's a cali and her brother; he's colored similarly to two of my earlier charges. I was particularly surprised, however, at another calico who wouldn't leave me alone, stared directly into my eyes, made herself at home on my legs/lap nomatterwhat - unusual for her, I was told - and trailed me.

I told both shelters I didn't know I was quite ready and proposed the foster idea, except they didn't currently have any post-surgical or maternity candidates.

What I've learned over 26 years of cat ownership is that kitty karma isn't something necessarily subject to analysis. Definitely a case of letting the chips fall where they may. I'm neither on a schedule or in a rush. A lot of choices and I'm not quite up for a decision except to say, at a minimum, it's a pair.

I'll have good and bad days yet, but today was a better day.

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#444881 - 08/20/13 10:54 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Dave PNW Offline


Registered: 04/03/13
Posts: 109
Loc: Pacific Northwest
Lancer, I am so sorry for the loss of your companion. I can really hear how important he was in your life. Take care ((((Lancer))))

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#444887 - 08/20/13 11:43 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Thanks dw. We were crucial for each other. I vowed to lay on him all the love I had for his other two family members (his sister Lucy - go figure - and best buddy/guardian, Buddy).

I still expect to see him on the front step, or his butt just outside the kitty door. Dunno that I want/can or even need to let go of that yet...and it's now exactly a week.



And that's one reason why, inviting as the others are - especially the calicos - I feel I need some time. I guess the issue for some is feeling as though I'd be dishonoring his memory by getting more kritters. My well-developed kitty sense, however, is that, like my other guys who were my anchors and saw me thru so much, he'd rather see his species pick up the job now that he's completed his.

...and the tears are starting again. Gotta stop now.

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#444891 - 08/21/13 12:29 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
1.healing Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/10/10
Posts: 261
Loc: NW Ohio

Hi Lancer,

I'm so sorry about your loss, it's heartbreaking hearing you tell of Ricky's death and the longing you feel for his gentle presence in your home. You've been through this before, you know what's involved in healing, it mostly requires time and a lot of emotion.

As you navigate these sad times, know and feel you have the compassion of many who understand your grief for your remarkable companion. Go easy and gently these days and know that you're thought of at this difficult time.

Gary / 1.healing
_________________________
"It's never too late to be what you might have been."

George Elliot

"You cannot find peace by avoiding life."

Virginia Woolf

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#444893 - 08/21/13 12:37 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Guess I'm in a mood to write.

Back to my upbringing and how all this kitty stuff relates to my ongoing recovery. As a young teen, I was physically, verbally and emotionally abused. Unfortunately, I'd take it out on my lab, Cindy, by kicking her. Hell, what kid in a situation like the knows NOT to act out? And I've never gotten over my guilt for that.

When I say these feline friends have been my anchor, I mean that when I get angry, I consciously know NOT to take it out on them IN ANY WAY and it forces me to calm down. In fact, the relationships force me to be gentle when I'd rather be railing against whateveritis. Perhaps it's my way to make it up to Cindy.

When I've been depressed (long term clinical depression) one thing that's often gotten me off my butt is knowing these guys are absolutely dependent on me for their needs and for consistency. It's a form of parenting I can actually handle. They don't get the cognitive stuff. However, they completely understand the emotional stuff with a kind of empathy foreign to humans.


Just occurred to me I need to note on Ricky. For one, when I lost his other two (AND Adam), I'd cry in his fur...and this is the first time I haven't had that. For another, the thing I miss most at bedtime - the hardest time for me - is that he used my face as his pillow. It would start off innocuously enough, lying on my chest, purring away. Then he'd just flop sideways, burying my nose and mouth in his fur - so what if I couldn't breathe - and he'd drift off to have his kitty dreams, happy claws digging into my right arm; I have the scars to prove it. If I was on my side, he'd have to settle for spooning, but stretched out full length. Man, I miss that.

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#444919 - 08/21/13 10:00 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Chase Eric Offline
Moderator
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Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 1276
Now I'm crying. Only through the power of the internet could Ricky bring tears around the world like this. By the way, love the new prospective kitties smile .
_________________________



Click my pic to see why I'm here

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#445061 - 08/22/13 02:09 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
I don't like this. I don't like feeling this way. I don't like sharing it. Not that it's unexpected, but I need to put it out there in the MS ether:

I'm feeling incredibly lonely tonite for my Ricky...hell, for all my guys. I'm feeling emotionally and physically drained from the past week. Every part of me literally aches.

Hell, there should be a furball (or two or three) peacefully luxuriating on my bed tonite while I watch a movie...or perhaps, with great fanfare, bringing in a hunting prize for my approval (anything from a seagrape leaf to a lizard).

Did a trip back to the shelter today just for some grounding and connection with the comforting, familiar world of meows and head butts. If nothing else, a good reference for me to scope out those kritters who have well-developed empathy. And there's at least one shelter kitty I've had in mind since she took to me 48 hours ago by settling in my lap or being my shadow.

As I've pondered it tonite, yeah, some furball with me might help at the moment - but hell, it's not my Ricky. Dammit.

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#445070 - 08/22/13 07:04 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Chase Eric]
Farmer Boy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/23/12
Posts: 442
Loc: Australia
Originally Posted By: Chase Eric
Now I'm
Only through the power of the internet could Ricky bring tears around the world like this.


Even in the land downunder....

(((Lancer)))

Lost my cat 4 years ago after 10 years together.... Mr Jackson.

Your story of that special feline at the shelter who sat on your lap and followed you reminded me of something I just had to share.

My now father in law is a MASSIVE cat lover. Like they are above his daughters in the family hierarchy. The day I was introduced to the family I was standing there talking and this big old tabby named 'Tiger' sits at my feet and just looks up at me. The next thing I know he jumps from the floor in one leap and lands on my right shoulder. smile (I am 6'2") Sacred the begebas out of me!!! My wife's dad shaking his head saying that he (the cat) doesn't like strangers. I instantly had the stamp of approval.

I agree Ricky would not want you to be lonely.

Lee
_________________________
More than meets the eye!

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#445082 - 08/22/13 09:03 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Farmer Boy]
Chase Eric Offline
Moderator
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 1276
Originally Posted By: Farmer Boy
I was standing there talking and this big old tabby named 'Tiger' sits at my feet and just looks up at me. The next thing I know he jumps from the floor in one leap and lands on my right shoulder. smile (I am 6'2") Sacred the begebas out of me!!! My wife's dad shaking his head saying that he (the cat) doesn't like strangers. I instantly had the stamp of approval.

I agree Ricky would not want you to be lonely.

Lee

Our gray tabby/tiger does something similar with me. When I am eating at the table, he jumps onto the chair back and perches on my shoulder. I feed him little scraps and he chews right next to my face - it's sort of trippy, actually. Sacred begebas, indeed.

I love the fact that we are all sitting on a billowy cloud of shared memories, courtesy of a wonderful little cat named Ricky.
_________________________



Click my pic to see why I'm here

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#445089 - 08/22/13 10:37 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Thank you Lee. And thanks for the supportive words. (I happen to agree with your father in law's perspective). Your story that perfectly illustrates my surprise at the experience. Like she felt she was meant to make herself at home on my lap. Presumptuous kitty. I like it. Where she's concerned, it's all but settled...and I actually have something to look forward to.

A little sleep helped when I finally got there, btw.

One thing that came to me was something a little different from what some others who have lost their furball might do. Some swear never to have another one because of the pain of the loss. My determination has been to again have a family. I've been swearing - albeit second-guessing myself - never to let myself be limited to a single cat again. In hindsight, yeah, I probably could have introduced a laid-back female to Ricky seven years ago when the others were lost and he might have been happier with a fellow feline conspirator. Quite selfishly, I wouldn't be going through this kind of pain without a feline comforter on my comforter.

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#445165 - 08/22/13 08:58 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
BraveFalcon Offline
Greeter
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/25/13
Posts: 1087
Loc: The ATL

Hi Lancer. Just wanted you to know that I just got caught up on your thread. I hope today was a little better and that things are getting easier. I also want to say that there is nothing wrong with getting a new kitty right away and I don't think you'd be dishonoring Ricky's memory in any way by doing that. Although, if you need some time, that's ok too. My brother adopted the cats that live with us only about a month after my two cats passed away but he asked me first if I was ok with it. I said was ok with it, and I was, but if it had been within a week of my Chelsea and my Amber passing away I'm not sure I would have been ready. Just take your time and bring that new companion into your life when the moment feels right. There is no time that is to soon and there is no grieving period that is to long. Take care. Peace,

Ken

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#445189 - 08/22/13 11:37 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
I just PM'd a couple of you guys, but might as well post.

From experience I knew to take care of some basics on upsetting reminders right away (putting many of his things, not all, away for now), the cremation, wood urn (arrived today). Grieving is "fine" - I'm in it 24/7 - but I don't have to torture myself.

Shelters have been my grounding, if only to be around meows and head butts, despite the smell in the common rooms (no cages). A cali at one shelter and a Ricky lookalike at another did the same thing, immediately settling into my lap with nary a second thought. At one shelter, a group of three, identical to Ricky's family as they were ten years ago, decided the bench was only for the four of us and settled right in to positions on/against me (hell yes, it was a clear message, I believe, from my previous furballs).

I'm in no shape to make a decision (nor do I have to) right now. My minimum is a pair. Nice to know I'm being presented options.

Frankly, too, I'm glad to be otherwise distracted by work.

But goddammit it's quiet around here...

Thanks again for your support guys. I'm feeling wrung out.


Addendum (several hours later): I feel like crap. Muscles and everything ache. Circles under the eyes. And, strangely, one of those times I'm grateful for the tools some of us get in our 12-step programs. In particular, the HALT (hungry, angry, lonely, tired). Personally, I've found if I'm fighting any two of 'em, I just need to stop. Period. So I did. Cancelled my appointments for Friday. Screw it. My little one just died and I need time for me.

Despite the success of the new meds, I have to consider the HIV, too. When I've felt like this in the past and not paid attention, I've gotten sick. Not willing to risk that.

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#445278 - 08/23/13 06:29 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Just to share...because it's cathartic.

Stuck to my guns. Took the day off, clients be damned. Didn't answer the phone. Got a full eight hours. Three of my friends are checking in regularly and I return their calls, but they understand I don't want to be around people right now. Nice they give me the space.

I'm certainly depressed. More so today than any time in the past ten. I'm surprised the flavor of the depression is quite different from what I've ever experienced. I function. Just not well. However, I'm not in a paralyzing hole either. Have awful cries once or twice a day. Lest anyone think I have it together, hell no I don't.

Despite the heat/humidity the yard needed to be done. Did the whole damn thing, mowing, trimming, sweeping, sweating and all. Ricky's bench is outside my office window under a large potted plumaria I've had forever. Last spring I further potted a couple large prunings from it and placed them at the front door. Had a great idea while I was out sweating and moved the pots to Ricky's favorite sun spot in the mulch by the back door...and wore the gloves I'd used to recover his little body last week. Fitting memorial.

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#445338 - 08/24/13 11:52 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
traveler Offline
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Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3304
Loc: back in the USA
{{{{{{{Lancer}}}}}}}

lee
_________________________
We are often troubled, but not crushed;
sometimes in doubt, but never in despair;
there are many enemies, but we are never without a friend;
and though badly hurt at times, we are not destroyed.
- Paul, II Cor 4:8-9

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#445364 - 08/24/13 05:02 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Thank you Lee.

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#445380 - 08/24/13 10:21 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
ThisMan Offline
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Registered: 01/22/13
Posts: 767
Loc: upper south
...me too, Lancer..... wish I knew what to say......
(((((Lancer)))))

bill
_________________________
For now we see through a glass, darkly.



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#445393 - 08/25/13 12:59 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Thx again Bill. From what you posted earlier in the thread, you in particular might be interested to know today was relatively benign emotionally...at least more so than any time in the past ten days.

I know how this goes. I'll still have some bad days ahead, but some good ones, too. And others, I guess like today, that are neither. Suppose it helps I've been really dedicated to getting my rest/sleep the past 48. I haven't been to my pair of shelters in a couple days. I considered they might be upsetting me, but they're quite the opposite. They're engaging my mind to the possibilities: a pair? a trio? a quad? siblings? Interesting to me it's distilled down to personalities instead of fur patterns. Yeah, substance. Except I have to admit my preference for the tabs and black kitties...familiarity and personality.

Where you guys have especially helped me, aside from propping me up all week, is the reinforcing that special non-human wisdom/influence that cats have and the thot of what Ricky and the others would want for their cat daddy.

I'm making slow moves in the direction of the next family. I've always kept the combs, brushes, toys, etc. of my Rainbow Bridge guys bagged and carefully stored, the new ones getting new stuff. Made a move in that direction in the past 24 by ordering a new wooden handle comb and brush...and the requisite puff balls. A new kitty placemat is probably next. But that's all I'm doing now.

I'm thinking I might move forward further after Labor Day (U.S) when I've got Ricky's ashes back. But, as usual, I'll see how I feel.

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#445438 - 08/25/13 06:09 PM ! [Re: Lancer]
Smalltown80sBoy Offline
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Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 2217
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Edited by Smalltown80sBoy (02/28/14 09:29 PM)

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#445474 - 08/26/13 12:38 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
The link please Gary. You? Hijack? Nah.

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#445519 - 08/26/13 05:42 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
No need to respond guys. Just helps me to post. Having one of those wrung out days. Very depressed and it looks like I'll just have to ride it out today.

When the kitty fountain gurgles, I find myself looking around to see if it's Ricky taking a drink, even though he wasn't ever impressed by Daddy's Great Idea...and we stayed with the bowl. If I hear a sound in the house, my first instinct is that it's Ricky getting into something. And that's just where things are today.

Nor, at the moment, do I particularly feel like pursuing the adoptees even though there are good candidates. I guess I just want to miss my companion for a while...hell, hasn't even been two weeks anyway. I hate this shit.

My usual inclination would also be to find a tie-in to my history. I don't even want to put forth that effort.

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#445522 - 08/26/13 05:48 PM ! [Re: Lancer]
Smalltown80sBoy Offline
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Registered: 03/25/12
Posts: 2217
!


Edited by Smalltown80sBoy (02/28/14 09:28 PM)

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#445523 - 08/26/13 06:20 PM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
You remind me they're all unique...and perhaps that's the way it should be.

One of Ricky's predecessors, Sheena (the Mom to a few of my guys), would rest on my upper back, stick her (wet) nose in my ear and fall asleep. Ricky wasn't nearly as delicate, as I've mentioned previously. He'd lie down on my chest, then flop on his side which would land suffocatingly on my nose and mouth.

(In years of kitty observation, I've noticed they'll often lie down on their captured prey, too. Now, whether Ricky considered me prey or it was simply a demonstration of my being pwned....)


Speaking of "ownership" I'll share a story that cheers me up a little. When Ricky was still a youngster of three or four, he one day dragged a heron in through the porch's kitty door, thru the sliders and down to the end of the hall to Daddy's bedroom door, where he lay down and took a nap while Mr. Bird just stood there in shock, not to mention Ricky's dad, too (wtf? there's a HERON in my hallway!). When naptime was over, he again dragged Mr. Bird back down the hall, out the sliders and out the kitty door where, amazingly, he released it. (His sister Lucy never quite got the hang of The Hunt. She'd hunt/retrieve/parade...seagrape leaves, but with no less feline fanfare).

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#445671 - 08/28/13 06:48 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Two weeks today since Ricky passed. Under the circumstances, I've nevertheless had a couple decent days. Perhaps part of it is that - yeah, I'll admit it - I've put a teddy from an old collection in my bed as a substitute. I suppose the other part is considering what he'd want for his dad. But I still have times during the day when I miss his presence terribly.

I'm letting things take their course in their own time. I've tentatively settled on a pair of FIV+ boys, about seven years old, already bonded. The agency seems receptive. Common wisdom is that their FIV status often makes them unadoptable in the average person's eyes. Honestly, if I was dating, not unlike a guy who'd reject me for my HIV status alone. Kindred spirits, if you will.

There are a number of other parallels to my own adoption experience, as well, which I won't go into here.

I've clearly indicated, however, I'm still grieving Ricky and in no rush. These guys are in a foster home - though with a number of other cats - but settled and comfortable. Besides, they may not even LIKE me.

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#445832 - 08/29/13 06:01 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Having one of those 12-24's when I need a lengthy online vent. Short version is that this has taken more out of me physically than I expected. Various times in the past two weeks, including now, I've been feeling more like I felt before the new meds started in Feb. Guess that's a clue and not unexpected...but, sheesh, when it hits it's lousy.

Had a nice half hour chat with the lady who had cared for Ricky's body until she found out who the owner was. Has four of her own, and it's reassuring to know I live in a place where neighbors actually care. Still, had a bit of a cry last night because Ricky wasn't asleep on my chest.

I'm using some of this time to have some long overdue painting done inside the next couple of days. It'll be distracting and annoying to have a painter in here all day, but the damn stuff will be done once and for all...and before any adoptees arrive.

Adoption was approved for the pair of FIV cats ("excellent application")...not only invoked my own HIV, but my own adoption experience. If there's something to be said for what I've endured/survived, it's that I get it. Probably what empathy's about. The agency has offered to cover their lifetime medical care! They call it Foster Forever. The generosity - much needed - surprised the hell outta me.

I guess I should feel excited. But what I feel and what I think are two different things right now. I just feel emotionally and physically drained. But I particularly like they're a bonded pair, that their descriptions have prompted me to rechristen them Tigger & Spot, and that a pair of guys with FIV came into my life with barely any effort on my part, except that my soul has been crying out for Ricky and/or new companions to fill the void. Perhaps I was heard as I'd never been heard before. Can't quite put it into words, but my feeling is that they're about to get a better life than many of their FIV- counterparts will ever get and it's because of their FIV. Go figure. At the moment, however, I just feel tired enough to let things take their course. Almost sounds like post-withdrawal resignation.

First visit in their foster home coming up Sunday afternoon. Leaving a shirt for them with my scent (perhaps something with Ricky's scent, too). I still obviously need regroup time, they need to get to know me and I them. So it will be at least few visits before they're introduced to their new home. I told their foster mom I want to make it an interesting new "adventure" for them, instead of a snatching.

It just helps to be around feline affection, whether or not it's the ones I'm adopting.

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#446456 - 09/05/13 03:51 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
Lancer Offline
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Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
I'll add a happier note to the post I made on Ricky's cremation arrangement and the lousy way I was treated. I made a huge stink and they righted things the second time. I also shot them a note thanking the administrator who stepped in on the matter.

When I picked up the ashes this week I had another surprise. I'd expected only his ashes. I thought the cardboard box seemed heavy. When I opened it, they'd placed the ashes in a beautiful sealed cherry box. I was pretty speechless. I was thinking how appropriate that this special companion of 16 years received special treatment. More waterworks...

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#446458 - 09/05/13 03:59 AM Re: Kitty Saved My Life [Re: Lancer]
peroperic2009 Offline
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Registered: 10/09/11
Posts: 3599
Loc: South-East Europe
Hey Lancer,
it is so good to see you here and it was great to read some happier note about Ricky.
That was very sweet story! It is no wonder that water is flushing everywhere...

Pero
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