Arriving at a sad time
Hello, fellow cat-lovers,
I have sought out this forum today in the hope of a few kind words in my sadness. Today is the third day that I have awakened without my sweet Hannah in my world. She died this past Tuesday evening, and I am still heartbroken. She was well up in years, but it does not matter - I still want her back with me.
Hannah had a complicated story in that she was a feral who lived on the farm that I moved to three years ago. The woman who had fed her all her life moved away and I was left as Hannah's sole caretaker. It pained me to see how she suffered during our cold upstate NY winters. I fed her good food a couple of times a day. I bought a shelter for her but she never used it, preferring to sleep in one or another of the various farm buildings instead.
Hannah was a sad little cat with little apparent personality when I first met her. It took a couple of years, but eventually she and I truly became buds. She never let me touch her but when she came up on the porch for her food, she would be so happy and feel so good that she would roll back and forth, back and forth on her back, purring the entire time.
At times she would almost forget to be afraid of me, and would lie looking out across the fields, with me at her back only six or eight feet away. Then she would remember though, and be skittish once more.
For the first two years I knew her, Hannah always dragged her tail behind her whenever she walked around. Because I never saw her lift it high the way a cat does when it's feeling good, I had even thought that perhaps she had broken her tail at some point and it had never healed.
During this last six months or so, however, any time she came up on the porch for her breakfast or supper and saw me waiting for her, she would put her tail straight up and walk around in anticipation. This is when she would also flop down on her side and roll around so happily.
All of that has ended now, and my Hannah is gone. She lived a long time, and her last year here with me was, I'm sure, by far her happiest. She won't suffer any more, and I'm grateful for that.
I'm suffering, though, because I miss her so much and because, I suppose, I just feel bad for her sad and difficult life. I wish I could have arrived here years ago, when I would have been in time to tame her and give her the home she deserved.
I got my first cat thirty-five years ago, and I've always had one or more ever since then. So you know I've gone through this a number of times before. It just does not get any easier, though. I feel the same pain for my Hannah as for any of my other cats.
Thank you for listening to me.