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10 December, 2017

Sad News and a New Beginning

I've been keeping something from you...something that has been too hard to share. But now it's time  for me to tell you. I am a private person when it comes to my real life family so my four cats have always served as my blog family, taking the role as my hard-working staff. Their photos were always front and center in my posts. But if you are a long-time follower, you may have noticed that they have gradually disappeared. There is a reason for that. I will be brief because this is hard for me.


I lost my precious Oz almost two years ago to kidney disease and a series of strokes. She was 17 years old and had been with me since she was five weeks old, even living with me in France. Losing her left a huge hole in my heart. Maybe only animal lovers will understand this, but part of me is still missing.


Shortly after I lost my Oz, I discovered that my big boy Baby Kitty was suffering from intestinal cancer. I was heartbroken. I had bottle-fed him as an abandoned kitten. We tried everything to save him but nothing worked. He has now been gone a year and I miss him and his sweet disposition so much.


The very next day after I lost my Baby Kitty, we discovered that my beautiful Isabella was in kidney failure. Even a stay with the specialist could not bring her out of it. I was heartsick. In 18 months time, I had lost three of my sweet furbabies.


That left only my Miss Kitty....my deaf and crazy old girl who is now 18 years old. She paced the floor and cried when she realized she was alone but I was determined not to have any more cats. I couldn't handle any more loss and grief. The staff photos stayed on my sidebar and I kept it a secret from you. My blog was the only place where they were still alive and I couldn't bear to part with them.


And then my daughter brought this beautiful little lady home to me. Her name is Iris. I'll be honest. I was angry at first. I was still grieving. But Iris won my heart. She loves everybody and thinks everybody loves her. Like three of my other four staff members, she is a rescue...but I am the lucky one to have her in my life. She comes to me, puts her paws on my knee and begs to be petted. And...she is a loud-purring kitty. I have always loved that.


And then...one last addition...another rescue. One look at my Eudora will tell you what got her in the door. Yes, she's almost the exact image of my Oz.  She has that same tortoiseshell coloring and sassy attitude...tortietude, as they call it...that I have missed so much. She has helped to fill that big hole that my Oz left. However, there is no doubt that she has her own personality and funny little quirks. She has claimed her own place in my heart.

So now that makes three and I am happy again. I am not yet ready to take my staff from the sidebar but that will come. In the meantime, you will begin to see Iris, Eudora and, of course, Miss Kitty in my photos. I am so happy to share my home with these three lovable furballs. They have all learned to get along, especially the new babies who are one-year-olds and love to play together. Now it's time to move on with a new beginning and a new staff. And I am saying a special thank you to you, my readers, for understanding my silence because I know that you will.


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42 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing this difficult experience,and celebrate your new family!

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  2. Such gorgeous kitties!! - I totally understand your sense of loss.

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  3. Deb thank you for sharing this with us. I have wondered the last few years about how your kitties were doing but as they stayed on the blog sidebar I just didn't ask. I know the hole in your heart x 3! Losing Charlie almost 2 years ago hurt almost as much as anything I've been through. Now I have Annie Belle and she too has made a place in my life and my heart. I'm so happy to know you have furry love in your life and you will soon start sharing these sweet kitties with us. I'm sending big hugs knowing how difficult this was for you.

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  4. Thank you for sharing with us. So sorry and yet happy for you with the new babies. Look forward to seeing them in future posts.

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  5. I can understand why you weren't ready to share the sad news right away. Losing a pet is like losing a family member. So sorry you lost your kitties but I am happy you have new ones to love!
    Shelley

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  6. Debbie, I guess like others I had noticed the lack of kitty activity on your blog recently... so I’m glad you shared with us today. Your new babies are beautiful, and will warn their way into our collective hearts. Now, have a Purrrrfect Christmas holiday. God Bless. Dixie

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  7. Sweet friend, I know you have been in a state of grief as well as happiness over your new babies. We never get over our fur babies, and I really do believe in the Rainbow Bridge. There is no way heaven is not filled with our sweet little fur ones. I just know we will see them again one day. Iris and Eudora are just beautiful. I can't wait to see more of them. xxxooo

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  8. Awww, Debbie - I'm so sorry! I remember well our visit to you and watching how you gave such tender loving care to your furbabies. I know nothing can replace the ones that you've lost, but I'm happy that you have something to help fill that hole in your heart just a little. xo's

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  9. I am truly sorry, Debbie. I know the pain of the loss of a beloved pet. They will always be missed. It is pleasing to know that you have accepted new furry family members into your heart and home, more so because they are rescues. https://fairmeadowplace.blogspot.com

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  10. Oh, Debbie, that had to be so very hard. I lost a cat to kidney failure not long after we got Miss Bailey our first inside dog. Before Bailey we always had cats. I grew up with cats. We had five living here when we first moved in and one by one we lost them. I'm so glad you opened up your heart for the two new ones!

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  11. I'm so sorry to hear of such a huge loss in such little time, Deb. I have no problem understanding what that feels like. I have been there, as you know, and know that the grief of losing a cherished cat is a very personal thing to deal with. It takes time. My daughter has just lost her dear boy, Hugo, and we are all feeling the pain.It's the sad side of loving them so much. I'm happy to see two more homeless cats have won the lottery and will live a love-filled life with you. I look forward to getting to know them. Sending a hug, Deb

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  12. Oh Debbie, I had no idea. Hugs to you. I love hearing about your gorgeous new fur babies.

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  13. I'm sorry about your kitties and I sure do understand. It's been 6 years since I lost Spunky. I still miss him and cannot bring myself to get another cat. I've had a cat ever since I graduated from college in 1975, but I had him the longest. I'm glad you have some new additions. Maybe one day I will, too.

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  14. Debbie I am so very sorry for your loss! Loosing our fur babies is very very tough! We lost our Max in Sept of 2015. He was almost 14 years old. Never in a million years did I think we would loose our Sophie 6 months later. She was 15 years old. I still miss them so very much and yes, I know this sounds crazy but I swear sometimes I still see my Sophie walking around here at the new house letting me know she is still here with us. Both kitties passed away before we moved here. I always look around and think about things that they would have loved about the new house like our outdoor living space. Oh they would have been over the moon for it! Your new babies are beautiful and I know that they will bring you much joy.

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  15. Those sad posts are the worst and always the ones I dread. I just had to post about the loss of my wonderful Dad who passed away just before Thanksgiving and my beloved cat Molly passed away in September. So I understand why you put it off because it's hard to put into words your exact feelings and you want it to be the best, most meaningful blogpost ever. That's a lot of pressure. All those sad feelings are brought up again. I am so happy you have some new kitties to love. They can give you some much needed joy and I am so sorry to hear about your dear kitties. I know you are still missing them. May your sweet memories carry you through the dark days.

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  16. Debbie, I'm sad for your loss. It does leave a hole in our hearts, but I tell myself that the heartbreaking grief is the price we pay for the abundant love received from our pets or loved ones. It took us 20 years before we brought another dog into our lives. Sadie has been with us five years now, and we can't imagine life without her. I'm happy that you allowed these new kitties into your home and your heart. I think it is healthy! All the best to you, sweet friend. Sending hugs of comfort over the miles.

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  17. Debbie, Pets become a loving part of our daily lives and it really does hurt when we lose them. You will always have those cherished memories of your "staff" to make you smile and laugh. Enjoy your new babies and make new memories with them. Hugs....

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  18. Debbie I am so sorry about your fur babies but how nice that you (and your family) rescued some more fur kids that needed you and you them. It is heart wrenching when we lose them and no one understands that better than us pet lovers who have made them family. We had to put down one of our pups this past May and my husband and myself bawled like babies. We have two more at home but they are old and the one, Kizzy, well let me just say we will be devastated when we no longer have her. She was a gift to me from my mom who I lost 2 years ago, the other two were litter sisters that we inherited. I will be looking forward to reading about your new babies on your blog. Merry Christmas!

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  19. It is very hard - when we lost our Princess Kitty,15 yo tuxedo, I thought I would not make it. Then the next year we lost Sam, out 14 yo spaniel. Our 2 remaining pets are fairly young, and I pray they stay reasonably healthy for a long time. They are my pet children.

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  20. Bless your hearts and your children! Hugs!!!

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  21. I know all too well about the "sting" of losing a fur family member. We lost our Willow 6 years ago. She was only 9 with no issues until she collapsed, dying slowly from HCM, a rare form of a congenital heart defect. She agonized while I waited for my husband to get home! Only one car and no neighbours around, it was horrific. We rushed her to the emerge, where vigilant vets tried their best to save her but alas, in vain. The vets said they had never seen a cat fight so hard to live and said it was because she loved us so much. It tore us both to shreds. We buried her in our yard. She is a cat that we shall always remember. On a different note, we found a lovely kitten, Chloe, a few months later. She, too, is loved and cherished.
    I am happy that you gave new life in your home which only helps preserve your memories of your other fur people.
    Sincerely
    Karen

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  22. I am so sorry for your grief. I fully understand. A few months ago I lost the best dog I have ever known. She was a rescue by my Dear Son. A sweet little Black Lab, she became mine when my son passed away 6 years ago after a long illness. He was 33. She was my last link to him. She was 17, advanced age for a large dog. I cannot believe that she is gone. I featured her now and then on my little blog and her brother as well. I know that having another pet does indeed help with the "connection" that those of us with pets enjoy but the beloved ones passed will always be in our heart.

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  23. I completely understand and share your grief. It is heartbreaking to lose a loved family member. I myself still cry for my three "girls" that I lost two years ago whenever I allow myself to think of them. Its not easy having a big heart. I hope the remaining girl from the original group feels better with the new girls. That too is heartbreaking to see a pet grieve. Oh the joy they bring us and how they enrich our lives...so hard to carry on when they leave us. I choose to believe we will see them again....

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  24. Oh, Dearest Debbie, I'm so sorry about your darling kitty cats. I, like many others, know and feel your pain. You have been blessed with new kitty's now!! How lucky for them that you are their new Mom!! It really is amazing though, how much Eudora looks like Ozzie. I have a tuxedo cat, and her name is Princess Bella. I must tell you though, sometimes her Tiara gets a little titled with some of the things she does!!

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  25. I am so sorry about the loss of your sweet, sweet cats....Pets are such vital members of families and their loss is quite devastating.....I am happy that you now have Iris and Eudora to fill the house with joy again. Merry Christmas to your and your sweet family!

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  26. I am so glad to hear you have new fur babies. I understand how hard it is to lose one that you love and I have felt that pain, but the love and joy you get from them is immeasurable.

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  27. I can so understand what you have gone through as I have had the same sadness. And even though the loss is so painful and it is hard to think of having another cat it does make the house a home. Plus there are so many that need our love and care. I am so sorry for your loss but glad you opened up your heart.

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  28. Dear Debbie, your news today broke my heart... I have 3 Siamese cats all from the same litter, Plushie, Bella, and Marcello, with me since they were 6 weeks old. They are now going on 13 and while they’re in perfect health I am beginning to dread their inevitable decline. They sleep on the bed with me and my darling Marcello in my arms like a baby. I am so sorry you lost your 3 fur babies within such a short period of time, I was in tears reading your post. I can truly sympathize with the pain you were and still are feeling, pets truly are cherished members of the family! It seems though that God has now blessed you with new kitties to love and they look adorable. Nothing can take the place of the babies that have passed but I feel sure that there are many years of love to come with your new fur children. You are in my thoughts and prayers for healing and a Merry Christmas. God bless.

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  29. Aww, the heartbreak that every pet owner knows and understands...They bring so much to our lives, yet, we know, they do not live as long as we do, so their time with us is short, but sweet enough that we are willing to welcome them into our lives.
    The top photo of the kitties enjoying the crescent of sunlight is precious. I was happy to read that you have opened your heart and home to more rescue kitties. What a difficult post this must have been to write, it was difficult to read as a pet owner.

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  30. So sorry for your loss. Our pets are family members who just happen to have fur. I'm so happy for you to have new family members to love.

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  31. I'm so sorry for the loss of your babies! I'm a dog lover and had two very special beagles named Hope and Abby. They have been gone for almost a decade but I miss them all of the time. Our furry friends are family and they give us love just as we give them and they do leave a hole when they are gone. I'm glad that you have gotten new family members to help soothe the pain a little. We wall need someone to take care of.

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  32. Animals are very important to us, they fill spaces and makes us laugh they have wonderful personalities.I have my sons and their families but my animals fill the spaces for my mom,dad, and husband that are gone. God gave us animals to enjoy and cherish,he knew.Merry Christmas and have a great day with your family.

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  33. I am so sorry for your loss, but am so glad you are continuing to give your love to other animals that need you. I have lost many pets, but I always eventually lose my heart to another animal. I'm so happy you did, too!!

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  34. We lost our 17 year old cat Lily just a few weeks ago, she was sad and a little more in need of attention after we lost our dog a year ago. Still thinking about new pets, not sure if we will but I am happy to see that you found a sweet new staff member.

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  35. Oh my gosh, how heartbreaking and resolving this post was! I love that you've opened your heart again, Debbie. It looks as though your new staff members are eager to fill the voids you've had. They're beautiful!
    Rita C at Panoply

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  36. I am so sorry for your losses, it brought tears to my eyes. So happy that you have healed enough to take on new family/staff. Oz, Baby Kitty and Isabella will be in your heart forever! Healing should be on your own time--take as much of it as you need--we will be here when you are ready.

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  37. Losing our pets is so, so, hard, as well I know. When I had to euthanize my beloved Chow-chow, Bakka, it nearly killed me. He was my second dog and I had had to euthanize my first dog, Chloe a couple of years before. She taught me that I indeed could love a dog. We had a relationship that made me realize how much communication there can be between a human and a creature so utterly not-human. It was a revelation to me and I loved her dearly for teaching me that lesson as well as for her companionship and devotion. So after I lost Bakka I said I can never do this again. I will never have another dog. I lasted for a year. But living alone, the emptiness of the house when I'd return from work was just so depressing. So then I adopted my sweet Tavi, a Labradoodle who the rescue organization was told was a Standard Poodle. That's what I'd been looking for, but my groomer showed me the characteristics that made her believe otherwise. But, no matter, he is a wonderful, loving companion. He just turned nine last spring and I dread the day he will leave me. But, his memory will be dear and treasured just like my other two dogs. If I'd had none of them I'd not have those sweet memories, so I am that much richer despite the loss.


    I thank you for sharing your story about losing your beloved kitties. I don't blame you at all for keeping it to yourself until you were ready to let us know. Totally understandable and appropriate. The new feline residents in your home will never take away the cherished memories of those you've had to let go. But they will--are already--giving you more companionship and memories to cherish. As much as I wish otherwise sometimes, having to let go of things we cherish is an unchangeable part of life. Love and loss, the essence of being human.

    Best wishes for a wonderful Holiday season. I know the kitties will probably be right in the middle of it all, especially the younger ones. Enjoy!

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  38. I am so sorry about losing your babies. God sent Buttons, my giant tuxedo cat and best friend, when I need someone the most. He died about two years ago and I still miss him. Then that silly Spike Jones the entertainer, came along and I raised five litters ! Hard to pick a favorite but some had to go. Bubba and the sister wives are next on the list.
    Wishing you and your new pals a Merry Christmas.

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  39. so very sorry, as a cat lover (I do have a few) my heart breaks for you. bUT I love your new additions. when I lost my dog in the 80s I vowed never to get another dog. now I have cats. I enjoy reading your stuff and seeing your creations, etc. thank you for sharing.

    Angela from NJ

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  40. I miss my pets too that have passed on, they share so much love! Love your new babies!

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  41. I'm so very sorry for your loss, but there are so many furbabies out there that need your compassionate heart. I've always said "I'll never get another!" after I've lost one..... but I always do! Bless your heart.

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Thanks so much for stopping by and taking the time to comment! I appreciate my wonderful readers!... Debbie