Friday, October 09, 2020

When Grace Whispers, "No."

No season lasts forever, thus our responsibility to appreciate each present one lavishly.


Yesterday was Sam The Cat's final day upon Earth. 

Often I've mentioned him to you, but what I'd held back? My struggle with caring for an elderly cat these past 6 covid-19 months.

While millions of folks had real, visible, legit problems, my mental, emotional and physical strength was being zapped by our nearly 17-year-old cat.

I would give you the lengthy list as to why, but I like you all too much.  ツ I'll spare you.

Just know I've felt like a wimp, a wimp with only seeping-away Grace to handle an elderly cat. Oh, how I need full Grace! Especially during these, my older years. A needer, wanter, requirer of 24/7 Grace: that's me.

Anyway, this week Sam--who, for years, rallied from thyroid problems, etc., and seemed determined to live forever--flew downhill fast in a perfect storm of issues. Barely could he walk on his last day. 

He'd belonged to Naomi his first 8 years and yesterday she came over and spent his final 4 hours with him pressed against her heart. Our house was quiet, like a funeral home, with only Tom speaking occasionally over his office headset.

Then at the vet's office, I remained with Sam while the doctor spoke to us, then with a last pat and whisper, walked through a rainy mist to the car. 

Braver than her mother, Naomi remained with Sam until the very end. 

With 100% assurance I know Sam's in Heaven all healed and reunited with our other cats, racing around the rooms of our mansions. (God being incredibly detail-oriented, He keeps track of all whom we love.) I have no doubts of this. None. Zero. Zip.

But still. The memories. 

I gaze at our living room and still watch Sam gallup to me when I, in falsetto, call, "Sam-eee! Sam-eee!" That, and the thousands of times I held him baby-like, giving him his thyroid pills, and those eyes. Those big hazel, trusting eyes of his staring at me.

We still have Daniel The Cat. He's 10 and huge and I'm sure missing the snuggling, the playful batting of his big brother, Sam.

But after Dan leaves us? No more cats. No. More. Cats.

You may be 90 and a wiry, strong Cat Lady, but me at just 61? My limits and I are well-acquainted. That dwindling strength of Grace was scarily telling and I know to obey its hintings. 

I know God needs me to be focused, strong, to encourage you and others.

So our decades of having 2 or more cats are done, over. Here at least. But oh, what gloriously wonderful cat seasons those were! And now they're ours to remember, forever, with joy.

"Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened."
--Dr. Seuss

And today I'm smiling through the tears of memory.

"And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left."   --- Isaiah 30:21

Each person I lose, each cat, all bring Heaven down a little closer to me, so much so, that I find myself often there within my mind.

God so often leads us by His way of Grace, making the road far less bumpy and much more pleasant.

Sammy the Cat:

Always up for a game. Any game, for any length. At any age.
So light on his feet, he felt weightless jumping from your fingers.
Loved his little brother, Daniel, to pieces.
The most good-natured cat we ever had.


Thankfully, I've some happy news for you.

After 9 (10?) long weeks, today Amy is reopening our neighborhood cafe! Oh my goodness, I can't help but feel God, Himself, had a hand in the timing of this opening.

Just when I needed it most. Wow. His goodness overwhelms me.


Also? Our neighbor, Sue (whose mom is Sally) was blessed this week with her second grandchild, a girl named Storie (cool name, right?). She joins her brother, Justice (another awesome name).

Color me happy for them all.


A very special thanks to all who encouraged us yesterday at Facebook! We appreciated each kind word and prayer. Thank-you.


"For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15


Betsy said...

Awww! I'm so sorry Debra. Sammy the cat sounds like an amazing friend to have. He lived a good long life and I'm glad he was with his family at the end.
I've been tempted to get another cat but like you we have decided no more animals. After my sweet Chloe is gone, that's it! No more. My heart can't take it anymore. She's 15 and is a larger dog so it's amazing she's doing so well. She runs and plays with the other dogs here at the dog park like a 5 year old.
Take care my dear friend. Be kind to yourself and love pats to Daniel who is probably very confused right now.

Pam said...

I'm so sorry for your family's loss, Debra. We were "cat people" for many years, too, and the struggle is rough at the end of life. So glad Naomi was able to spend time with Sammy and you during his last hours. I will pray for the days ahead to go well for all of you as you adjust.

Can't wait to hear about your trips to the coffee shop. Perfect timing, for sure.

Sending you a great big hug, Debra!!

Rebecca said...

Never a cat person myself, I recognize a good cat heart when I see one! I'm sorry for your lost.

Debra said...

Betsy--how wonderful that Chloe is doing so well at that age! You must have taken amazing care of her. And yes, my heart also can't take losing cats any longer. sigh. It's disappointing to me to feel this way but as with other areas, I'm learning to let go of the way things used to be and accept them as they are now. Not easy, but with God all things are possible, right?

Pam--thanks so much for your condolences and prayers! Amy's hours are back to pre-covid normal beginning this week so I'm thrilled for that.

Rebecca--thank-you for your condolences! I'm feeling better today on this Monday and looking forward to what's to come.

Thanks so much, Everyone! Blessings, Debra