Love takes up where knowledge leaves off.
Saint Thomas Aquinas
Animals are such agreeable friends –
they ask no questions; they pass no criticisms.
(Peaches in her beautiful prime / Julie Cook/ 2017)
How do you pick a day, a time or even the place for the death of another?
The death of someone you love dearly?
How can you be the master of another’s right to live or die?
Or perhaps more simply, how can one be given the tremendous responsibility
to glibly turn the hand with a thumbs up or a thumbs down?
…just like those various Roman emperors,
those long ago bloodthirsty leaders who were burdened, or perhaps gifted,
with such decisions— never seemingly having any internal
moral turmoil…none like I have had…
How in the world can one balance both mind and heart in
such everlasting ending sorts of decisions?
Oh there are those out there who seem to give such thoughts no never mind…
Those who have little if any regard for the living or the sanctity of
their, or anyone elses for that matter, life.
The phrase moral responsibility has been tossed at me like a
dead weight over the past several weeks.
As in…. it is my moral obligation to do the “right thing” by my
cat…my pet, my tender responsibility.
That being Peaches, the older of my current two cats.
She is/was 15 years old…
diagnosed with aggressive and advanced bone cancer in her jaw
just a few short weeks ago….
I’ve had a cat in my life ever since I was 6 years old.
Oh there was the occasional bird, fish, mouse, along with several dogs
over the years, but cats have been the constant.
So I did a little counting….
during the course of 57 years… that being from age 6 to 63, I have had a total
of 7 cats.
7 cats spread out over 57 years.
Some of them were more cat-like, while two of them were more dog-like.
(Yes even a vet once told me one of my cats was more dog-like than cat-like…
meaning they had a deeply bonding personality…not aloof and independent like
most typical cats.)
Peaches, who was more cat-like, came into my life in 2007.
She came as a lonely, lost and starving 8 month old kitten.
Our son had just graduated high school and had left for college when Peaches showed
up—it was as if on cue she came into my life when there was a drastic void.
She readily filled that void.
She was tenacious, street wise and determined to live.
And yet faithfully, throughout both the good and bad, Peaches stood by my side.
So fast forward to a recent divorce, upheaval and obvious loss…
all multiplied by a major move—
and suddenly, and oh so sadly, it came time for her to leave her post…leaving me.
So having overseen me resettled, I suppose she believed her job was complete.
It’s just that I wasn’t ready to make that decision for her, for me, or…for us…
but whoever said life would be fair…
And so I thank you Peaches, my dear tenacious friend,
Mommy will always love you!!!
(holding on to Percy’s tail, her surrogate child)
(Wednesday at the Vet’s when we said our good-byes)
“The Lord manifests Himself to those who stop for some time in
peace and humility of heart.
If you look in murky and turbulent waters,
you cannot see the reflection of your face.
If you want to see the face of Christ,
stop and collect your thoughts in silence,
and close the door of your soul to the noise of external things.”
St. Anthony of Padua