26 07 2013

Rosalind’s unexpected passing hit me very hard.  She was a large-breed cat, and I figured that the same rules applied to her that apply to large-breed dogs, that they just don’t live as long.  I figured I was looking at 12-14 years with her.  Instead, I got seven.  She passed much earlier than I ever expected.

There is another cat in the house, named Clara.  Clara is fourteen and I thought she’d be the one I’d have to say goodbye to first.  Instead, she is now the one left behind, and I am witness to the grieving process of a cat who has never lived without another cat in her life.  It’s not like she and Rosalind were buddies.  Rosalind was a confident, dominant cat, and she exerted that dominance early and often where Clara was concerned.  Most of their interaction involved storming through the house with Rosalind in pursuit.

And yet she is grieving.  Every morning, in the pre-dawn dark, she wanders the house calling.  She has been searching for days.

Even in her grief, she is ministering to me in her way.  Tuesday night, after my mother and I buried Rosalind, Clara followed me around the house.  She slept with me that night, the first time she’s done that since before my husband died.  And every evening she’s been getting up on the sofa with me, purring into my hand until she curls up next to my leg and goes to sleep.  Tonight she face-planted straight into the sofa.

Clara sofa

This from a perfectly lovely cat who normally has very little use for me outside of keeping the food bowl full and the litter box emptied.  She adores my son, and ignores me as she falls over at his feet.  I never expected for her to reach out to me again and again as she has this week.  Even in her own grief and loss, she still reaches out to me.

(This remarkable cat was named for the even more remarkable Clara Schumann.  You should know about her.)





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26 07 2013

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