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I finally had to make the devastating decision to put my precious Phoebe down at 16yrs of age. She was sick and losing weight at an incredible speed. The day I carried her into the vet she was only 4 lbs...very sad. My heart is still breaking and I just can't seem to get used to my life without her. I found her as a stray when she was barely 5 months old and took her in. She gave me the best years of her life and made mine worh living. No matter how stressful my day was or what could have gone wrong I always knew she would be there to greet me at the door. Then at night she would share my pillow and sometimes my head to rest hers. Oh how I miss her rumbling purr at 2 in the morning when she would see my eyes open. I sometimes had to preten to sleep to keep her silent. She was so beautiful and such a part of my heart I just don't know what kind of a life I will now have without her. It will be 3 weeks on Monday and I still come home from work and look for her. Sometimes I think I hear her or see her. People just don't understand but I really really loved her with all my heart and soul. I do not have any children and she was with me since I was 21 yrs old, she saw me grow up and guided me in lots of ways. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to heal? I have her pictures everywhere, even had to tape one on my wall above my pillow where she use to sleep...it just gives me comfort.

Oh how precious they are and a true gift from god, I just wish she could have stayed longer. So please say a little prayer for my beautiful calico daughter Phoebe that she will send me kitty kisses from heaven and be waiting for me when it is my turn.
Melanie
 

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Oh, Ladybug your story brought tears in my eyes.
It is true that some people don't understand how animal lovers are as fond of their pets just as of their children - But it is how we feel...because they are there with us at all times and we share laughter and tears with them - and we bond.
As for the part where we find it hard to deal with the hole they leave behind when they pass away..we all cope with it differently.
Not long ago a feral cat was hit by a car in front of our house very late at night. It seemed very drastic but I still wanted to take her to the emergency room. After discussing the pros and cons ...we decided to put her to sleep. I couldn't eat nor sleep or find any joy in life for a while ...as I usually get in a situation like this. But then at some point I discover as always what keeps me going - to be with the one I love and supports me and be able to help other pets in need.
Phoebe will always be present with you ..she lives in your memories

I will be keeping you and Phoebe in my thoughts
May she rest in peace
 

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It tugged at my heartstrings also. I couldn’t imagine that attachment and would think people were a bit overboard. But since I’ve adopted Ms Too Too almost 6 years ago, it was like reading my feelings. We’re going through a health issue at the moment. I will know for sure what to expect when that Ophthalmologist from CO. sees her again May 3rd. She is my stability and all the feelings you’ve conveyed. You’ve primed me on what to expect, I will be greatly sadden when the time comes for us. Right now I will enjoy her as much as I can. I will give her an extra hug tonight for you, Ladybug7, you & Phoebe will always be in my thoughts.
 

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ladybug, I know the feeling. I've parted with 3 cats myself, and it hasn't been easy at all. 16 years is definitely a long time, and Pheobe will leave a void in your home. My advise is to cry it out, spend one day just with her photographs and memories. Don't ignore the pain, it will not go away. But the moment you come to terms with her being gone, and realize that Phoebe's in a better place now, I'm sure things will go back to normal. You'll see her again someday, there's no doubt about that. :wink: Don't worry.
 

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I'm terribly sorry for your loss. Your kitty had a great home, and 16 years is very old for a cat indeed! She had a great 16 years of life with you, and probably enjoyed being spoiled by using your head as a pillow! The pain will never truly go away, you'll just learn to cope with what's gone and move on eventually.

Have fun at the bridge, Phoebe!!
 

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Ladybug, trust that Phoebe is already whole and healthy. She waits for you at the Bridge. And while that may seem so very far away, she lives right there in your heart. And one glorious day, she will run to the end of the Bridge to greet you again.

I pray that you will be able to welcome another kitty into your home, so that kitty will be able to receive the love that you have to offer. I believe in my heart that Phoebe will be happy to see another kitty treated with so much kindness and affection.

May Peace be with you,
Mike
 

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Mike you mentioned another kitty. I have had mixed emotions about that. Right now I feel that I could never adopt another one. Not wanting to feel those “missing her” feelings again. My little “girl” is unique; we all feel that way. Ms Too Too is my first. Within my income I provide whatever kitty luxuries I can. She’ll only eats her Nutro, no lobster, tuna, no people food, well a couple of licks of milk rarely. She’s never gotten in the trash, scratch furniture, even let’s me vacuum her before she gets on the bed. She comes on command, sits, points, lays down, & rolls over on command, she refuses to learn to shake. I could go on ….and thanks for bearing w/me because the point is; will my expectations, will I be to comparing? I don’t want to inadvertently make a new kitty feel slighted, just the thought is upsetting. I would never be selfish to fill the void of missing her. I still have a great deal of time to enjoy her, though sometime I can’t help but think about it. Reading the notes in the Forum has been so helpful and informative for me. I was reassured I wasn’t a nut case - feeling how so very special this little cat is to me. Thanks for listening.
 

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I'm sorry I'm fairly new here, still learning how to reply etc. I've realized I could have sent this differently.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the wonderful words of kindness

I want to thank you all as I have read each and every response. This weekend was very hard again as I cried off and on all day missing Phoebe. It was cold and rainy and on days like this she would always crawl under my blankets to lay by my feet and purr. Oh what a god send she was in winter in North Dakota. <<)) I will miss her dearly and remain thankful for every day I had with her. I do agree with Mike that some day I will probabaly open my home to a new little one. Right now the pain is to fresh, but in time I am hoping to feel the need to love another not to fill a void. For now I have started going to the animal shelters in town just to hold some older ones as well as younger ones, that is where I will put my emotions for now. They all need love and I am capable of that kind. I am also starting to write a poem in memory of her as well as gather all my pictures over the past 16yrs, they bring tears to my eyes and warmth to my heart.
Once again, thank you so much for your understanding...it is exactly what I needed.
Melanie (AKA:phoebesMom)
 

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I feel like your story is much like mine. I wrote a big long piece about Jazz when she had to be put to sleep. And I too still look for her around the house. It's been 5 months. I couldn't help searching petfinder.com, and I always came up feeling unfulfilled. I realized I was looking for a very specific cat -- that being Jazz, and not finding her.

I started going to shelters just like you are. It left me with so many feelings. I missed Jazz so much -- I wanted her to be there for me to hold. I didn't know the other cats like I knew Jazz -- I couldn't predict what they would do like with her. And none of them looked at me like she did. But I kept feeling like I needed to go, so I kept going. Eventually I started realizing that I was right -- those cats DIDN'T look at me like Jazz did. They had their own looks for me, because they were different. I couldn't expect to find Jazz anymore, and that turned out to be a good thing. There is only one Jazz. And she is in Heaven now, where she belongs, no matter how much I think she belongs here with me. The cats that looked at me at the shelter needed love too. And each cat needs a different kind of love, a different kind of relationship. This is what I realized by going. And it made me want to give them some of my love -- a different love. It is not a replacement -- replacement is impossible and we don't want to replace anyway. I have since adopted two kitties. *Different* kitties. They are not like Jazz -- and I am glad they aren't, because like I said -- there was only one Jazz.

So from my experience I can only tell you that what you're doing will make more and more sense to you as time goes on. Keep doing what your heart tells you, and take your time. If you want to bring another kitty home, go with that feeling. And by taking time you will ensure that you have found the perfect one, the next one meant to share some of your love. And when that time comes, it won't feel like a betrayal, or a replacement. It will just feel different, and new, and wonderful.
 

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I'm sorry to hear of your loss of Phoebe. May she RIP at the Rainbow Bridge, blowing you kisses and waiting for you. We all understand, we love our little furrkids, and to lose a beloved companion is just devastating.

I'm so glad to read that you are finding comfort in her pictures and your memories, and that you can handle visiting shelter kitties now - whatever you can do to keep busy will help with the pain.
 
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