I'm Sorry for Your Loss

I don’t want closure, I hate that word. My cat, my beloved eleven-year-old beautiful orange cat, Jimmy, died. He had a brain tumor and couldn’t be fixed. Where he was once a 16-pounder ready to take on all the squirrels and birds he could spy from his perch in our sun room, he had become so thin, so frail, his shiny, wiry coat became dull and sparse.

Last month we took him on a long two-and-a-half-hour car ride to Blacksburg. Virginia Tech vets were our last chance. When we got the call that evening that the inoperable tumor in his brain was so large that it was affecting his vision, his thyroid gland and other areas we cried for Jimmy and that horrible thing that lived in his head.

We took him for his final car ride on Tuesday, the same route we always take when he has his annual vet visit but this was different. When we walked in at our appointed time, the receptionist had tears in her eyes when she said those words. “I’m sorry for your loss.” As our loss was obviously imminent, anticipated.

It was a quiet death for Jimmy as we both held him on our laps and told him we fulfilled our promise made years ago, that we would always take care of him.

After leaving the vet in care of Jimmy’s physical body and walking into the sunshine, a very tiny brown butterfly came directly into my view and fluttered for just a second before he flew toward the heavens.

Jimmy? Who is to say? I will remember that beautiful sign and know my lovely cat is peaceful and free of pain at last.


Palmyra, VA

Reeling just a bit from having the power to end the life of a living, breathing creature but grateful that it can be done. I am off to yet another writers workshop, this one at Rutgers University. Wish me luck!