Tell Me It Will Be Alright

A lot of life consists of roller coaster moments. Ups and downs that we, most of us, tolerate to the best of our ability. My life the past eleven years has given me Jimmy. Jimmy in a bright orange and white package. Jimmy with the patience of a sixteen-pound saint. Jimmy with a capacity to love that has been unknown to me up until now.

Jimmy rescued me at the local animal shelter by putting his substantial paw through the cage to try and get my attention. When I stopped to look, his purr was so loud I thought it was my own stomach growling after having skipped breakfast that fall morning. I took him home in a cardboard cat carrier to my small apartment. He tolerated my double yellow head parrot, Rocko until he got too close and the big bird nipped him on his nose. After that he gave Rocko a wide berth out of respect.

This big orange tabby has been with me through four moves and each time he found his favorite chair and enjoyed a new view out a different window. When I met the man I was to marry, Jimmy was so loved by my husband and my husband’s former allergies subsided and he too fell in love.

Jimmy was my confidant and my huggable, mushy friend when, after twelve years, my husband was diagnosed with brain cancer and died nineteen months later. I was so strong for him, not letting him see me cry. I’d wait until he went to bed and then hold Jimmy and let my tears fall on his glossy coat.

Jimmy was recently diagnosed with a brain tumor. I had no idea that cats could even get such a thing. 

He looks so lost, so confused that it hurts me to see him this way. We will not know a prognosis until he has a final scan this week. After having seen my husband through two surgeries, chemo treatments, and radiation and watching his quality of life become so poor, I hesitate to put this small animal through the same, not knowing how his quality of life will be.


Palmyra, VA

I am an animal lover, a hospice volunteer, and an essay writer. I was a runner up for a story in Glimmer Train, and I thrive on writing courses and workshops, anything to get me motivated and writing.