Tuesday, May 20, 2014

A Letter To My Cat

Dear Egypt,
Oh, handsome boy. It's been one week since we said goodbye and I miss you so much. The physical realities of your absence are little needles that keep poking at me. I step extra wide around doorways because you liked to hang out at intersections, I tip toe out of the bedroom in the morning so that I don't wake you up, and I find myself scanning for you before turning in for the night, looking to see that you're okay and checking your bowl to make sure there's fresh water. You trained me well, Egypt.

For twenty years you were my shadow, my familiar. Quietly observing me with those golden, green eyes.

Our last evening together was so peaceful, I think we both knew it was the end of your road.

We all sat under the big tree out back, listening to the birds and the breeze, remembering and talking about all our long years together and the antics you used to get up to. Man, you used to be such a badass! 

More recently it was all about the naps and I don't blame you, you were ancient by cat standards. Dr. Stoops said you would have been over 100 years old in cat time. You deserved all the naps your little heart desired.

This last night you were the picture of somnolent tranquility, accepting enthusiastic doggy kisses from both Lola & Boswell with a dignity rarely seen when being half swallowed by an over affectionate, slobbering dog. Talk about grace under pressure...

This is how I'll always remember you best, solemn, regal. The King of the house.

Not that you didn't have your moments as the jester...

You two and those boxes... You loved them beyond measure. I was sad when we moved to this new house and didn't have a sunny window to put them in. 

You also had the knack of cool headed ironic humor. Is that normal for cats? You were a master, look at you, so serious with that embroidery floss all over your face.

"Look at me, I'm a clown. Yaaaay." 

No one did deadpan as well as you.

You were a good neighbor, too. Always friendly with the neighbor cats who'd come to watch in the windows. All except for that one time when that big ginger came flying over the fence and chased you under the shed for the night. That was scary for me too, I never heard you make noises like that before! We thought you'd run away! I was so worried that night, I made posters and everything. When you finally reappeared I didn't know whether to laugh with relief or strangle you for scaring the shit out of me. I know I wanted to strangle that other cat, or at least blast him with the garden hose. Come to think of it he never came around after that. Maybe I radiated malevolence on your behalf?

You were okay in the end, if a bit disheveled with dusty cobwebs floating from your ears and the tip of your tail. It's kind of funny in hindsight. Badass, forsooth. 

Oh cat, you were one of a kind. I miss your jet engine purring. I miss your cranky maowing, or should I say "MAOWING", because it was never subtle, you meant to be heard when you made your demands and accordingly, you roared like a lion. I still don't know how that much sound came out of such a small cat.

I miss you all so much, you & Chyna & Butch.

We've lost three of you in two and a half years. Ouuuch. Losing you was worth having you, and we'd do it all over again. You gave me twenty years. Twenty years!! I am so grateful for you, Egypt.

I hope you know how much you were loved, and that you carried it with you beyond. 
Til we meet again, tell the others I love them, too.

Your person always,

Dear Friends,
Thank you for indulging me to say the things I couldn't say while he was still here.


Deb said...

Aw Lisa - this brought tears to my eyes. It is so heart-warming to read a tribute like this to a cat who was loved beyond words for so long. Lucky you and Lucky Egypt. I understand every single feeling you have right now as I lost my Ed only months ago and he, too, was in his 20's. Our Lily is 18 now and we appreciate every day we have with her. We have lost 5 cats in the last 5 years and each had lived a full life. It never gets easier, as a matter of fact, I think it gets harder the older I get to lose them. But they are always in my heart as Egypt will be in yours. Enjoy your memories and I hope they leave a smile on your face very soon. Hugs, Deb.

Emma Heald said...

Beautiful. Thank you for sharing your memories with us xx

Mãos e manias said...

Great pictures, great cat! Thank you for sharing!

Mãos e manias said...

Great pictures! Great cat! Thank you for sharing!

Chris said...

What a beautiful post.

my cup of tea said...

So sad to loose a friend a (feline child) we lost our beloved Joey of 18 years 3 years ago.. You wrote an amazing description of his happy life. What a blessing you were his people.

Crystal Rhew Staley said...

Beautiful tribute to Egypt. He will be missed.

Pat said...

A fine post for a fine cat. He was indeed and handsome and beautiful, and 20 years is a good long time. So sorry for your loss, I love my two dogs beyond beyond, especially the little Boston Layla. I enjoy them every moment of every day, in the knowledge that they are on just loan to me from Big Daddy Doggie in Heaven.

Mad said...

I'm so sorry, he sounds like an awesome cat. I lost my soulmate kitty Noddy last month, I am inspired by your concentrating on the happy memories in this post as a way of celebrating while dealing with the horribleness of it all *hugs*

beadgirl said...

Oh, Lisa, I'm so sorry. He sounds like he was an awesome cat. I lost one of my cats almost a year ago, and I still miss her.

Marilyn said...

Hugs! It is so sad to lose a lovely friend. Take care! It took me a year to be ready to love a new furr baby, but now this one is already 5 years old.

Ana said...

I have cried many times for my so lovely special cats: Blanca, Perla, Chica, Loto, Micaela. Now there are 5 at home and I know I will cry again and I will miss them so much. But now they are giving me all their time, kindness, love, company, softness. Your words reflect the life of a family get used to live with cats: the window, the boxes, the yarns, everything you could put together in a beautiful letter. Thanks for sharing it with us. Sorry for your lost. A big hug from so far. Ana Sudy from Chile.