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An ending [Jan. 28th, 2009|10:30 pm]
When I first met him, it was a terrible winter in Columbus, Ohio. The back yard was frozen over with at least a solid inch of ice, and the ice lasted for over a month. And this skinny little black cat came up to the door, meowing.

My brain ran through the possibilities. If you feed a stray, you might as well take him inside... he'll never leave. But as much as I wanted to, I couldn't take him inside. We already had more cats than the landlord allowed.

But the poor guy was so cold... I picked him up and put him inside my coat. If I could at least warm him up for a while, well, that'd be something.

Luckily, I had a boss who understood. When I came in late to work, explaining why, she would have been more upset if I hadn't stopped to warm him up.

He was there the next day, too. What could I do? I put him in my coat again.

He soon decided that this was his home I suppose. He didn't stop coming by. Eventually, he snuck into Chris's car, and jumped out about five miles away, and we figured that was the end... but he found his way back.

I think, at that point, we decided we had to feed him. He'd more or less chosen us, and where else whas he going to go?

We brought him in, we de-flea-d him, and he grew.

Chris named him Chibi, after a tiny little black cat in an anime. But "chibi" means "small" and he topped out at about 20 pounds. It was a good name, anyway, and it's the name he had for over 15 years.

Fifteen years of hunting for scritches, and flopping next to people begging for pets, and laying on top of my chest, and purring ... always purring when someone took the time to give him a cuddle.

He was patient and playful and gentle. You could give him a pill or liquid without wrapping him in a towel, becuase he didn't like it, but he only struggled, he never fought.

But he'd been going downhill... not surprising for a cat who was at least 16 years old.

Monday, the stress I felt over his condition gave me a massive headache. Was it time, or could I wait? And Tuesday, I decided that a massive headache meant I could call off from work... I was sick, after all. I was too sick to work effectively.

We didn't do much. He was past his time for playing. We watched some TV, and the Stephen King flick "Cat's Eye" because Chibi would totally rescue a young girl from a tiny troll, and he wouldn't need a record player and a fan to finish the bastard off... at least, not in his prime. And I cuddled him, and he still purred for me a bit. But mostly, I felt his warmth and his heartbeat, and I thought it was awfully close. When Chibi can't purr, something had to be terribly wrong.

Over the past week, he had gotten confused and he'd get caught in narrow spaces. His back legs were too weak to let him back up, so he'd keep pawing away at whatever was in front of him. I tried closing them off, but he got caught behind doors. Or, rather, caught in doorways. Which was symbolic, I suppose, but then... well, then he got caught in the trashcan in my bathroom.

And it was like asking a question. Was I going to let my cat die, like a piece of trash that's been tosed aside, trapped and alone? Or was I going to make sure that he had someone who loved him standing by at the end?

There's only one answer to a question like that. So this morning, at 9, Chibi was finally able to shuck off the body that had become his prison.

I'm going to miss him.

Please understand that I may not ever feel up to responding to comments to this entry.

From: copperwise
2009-01-29 06:39 am (UTC)
So hard when they leave us. *hugs and love*
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[User Picture]From: mlion
2009-01-29 06:49 am (UTC)
I am so sorry.
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[User Picture]From: grey_lady
2009-01-29 06:59 am (UTC)
Just *hugs*.
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[User Picture]From: 98
2009-01-29 08:08 am (UTC)
No response ever needed. Just know we sorrow for you.
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[User Picture]From: firecat
2009-01-29 08:20 am (UTC)

no response necessary

Thank you for being a servant of Bast and rescuing the Chibi she asked you to help. And for letting him go when he needed to.

I'm so sorry you had to say goodbye to him.
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[User Picture]From: glinda_w
2009-01-29 08:36 am (UTC)

Chibi was such an utter *love* - it really was a privilege, the times you let me cat-sit him and Skitty, and he'll always be remembered.

It's so hard, the letting go when it's time.

Take care...
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[User Picture]From: wolfette
2009-01-29 08:41 am (UTC)
there are no words.

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[User Picture]From: wordweaverlynn
2009-01-29 10:08 am (UTC)
I am so sorry. He sounds like a wonderful cat.
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[User Picture]From: essaying
2009-01-29 10:36 am (UTC)
I'm so sorry. I was brought up to believe that domestic animals are lucky -- unlike us, they have people who will ease them out of the world when they're no longer able to enjoy its pleasures -- and I still believe that. Good for you for knowing that it was Chibi's time.
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[User Picture]From: siptah
2009-01-29 11:00 am (UTC)
John, I'm so sorry for you. I know it is difficult to lose a beloved pet and friend. Know that CJ and I will be keeping you in our thoughts. *hugs*
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[User Picture]From: okoshun
2009-01-29 11:25 am (UTC)
I'm sorry for your loss. :( *hugs*
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From: iamjw
2009-01-29 12:13 pm (UTC)
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From: siliconshaman
2009-01-29 01:52 pm (UTC)
Incense is lit on Bast's altar in Chibi's name...
*hugs* dude.
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[User Picture]From: jhetley
2009-01-29 01:56 pm (UTC)

They take large chunks of our hearts with them.
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[User Picture]From: siliconivy
2009-01-29 01:57 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: pernishus
2009-01-29 02:06 pm (UTC)
I'm so sorry for your loss, John.
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[User Picture]From: calpatine
2009-01-29 03:08 pm (UTC)
I'm sorry for your loss. I'm glad you could be there with him.
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[User Picture]From: awryday
2009-01-29 03:09 pm (UTC)
Sorry, John. You were a good friend to him. And that's what matters.

Edited at 2009-01-29 03:09 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: ztrooper
2009-01-29 03:30 pm (UTC)
I'm so sorry for your loss, John. It's a tough thing to live through. *hug* It'll get better though.
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[User Picture]From: sfw_dc
2009-01-29 03:33 pm (UTC)
I'm sorry. But he thanks you for the time and the love, and he is indeed where you envision him - in the next life, whole, happy, and watching over you.
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[User Picture]From: pagawne
2009-01-29 03:51 pm (UTC)
Love and hugs. I really do understand. He will be waiting for at the Rainbow Bridge when the time comes.

How to reply to this: have a cup of tea, put your feet up, and gently wave in the direction of east. Take at least 30 minutes to all this. Then go on about your day.
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[User Picture]From: blackthornglade
2009-01-29 04:45 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: wyang
2009-01-29 06:26 pm (UTC)
He'll be missed, and you're in Rosie's and my thoughts. Chibi was a fine cat, friend and companion for many years. I'm sure he knew he wasn't alone when the time came, and that your being there eased his passing.

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[User Picture]From: submarine_bells
2009-01-29 09:32 pm (UTC)
I'm so sorry for your loss. *hug offered*
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[User Picture]From: zanawake
2009-01-30 01:00 am (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: nsingman
2009-01-30 03:40 am (UTC)
There's no need to respond, John. I'm very sorry about the poor kitty. My sympathies.
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