I am mostly vegetarian and loving raw foods, (they just make so much sense) except I really crave warm things in the winter, and I came across your rawtimes.com home page. Thank you so much for maintaining it and supplying me with so much useful information. I really liked all your links and how you set it up, (tell me how you did that sometime, I play around with setting up simple web sites) and I had a major reaction when I came to your story about GreyGirl.
Andromeda, or Andi for short died in my arms on November 27th, 2000, two days before my birthday. I had had her since she was a kitten. It was on a 4th of July weekend and I was with my best friend Fred, at his parent's summer house on Lake Ontario. Andi and her almost twin sister, (the difference was Andi had a black tip on her tail and “Neil” her sister had a white tip) were wandering the neighborhood together. Fred and I scooped them up and went from house to house in the small community and nobody claimed them so I took one and Fred took the other. I also had a black cat named Remus at the time, he had been the counterpart to a white Shepard I had named Romulus. I lived upstate, then back on Long Island. Andi had been diagnosed with a heart problem and I had to keep her in the house for a year. I figured out that she had a Taurine deficiency and supplementing her food finally brought her around. She wouldn't eat unless I was petting her so three times a day I would lay on the floor with her and stroke her body so she would eat. She recovered nicely. She was the sweetest little girl if not the brightest. She was little too, only 6 8 pounds at her most. When it was feeding time she would go sit where she knew I would place her food, and wrap her tail around her feet, like a little patient princess. She always slept in bed with me. A couple of years ago she started becoming sick. Her front left paw would get infected and they thought it was an autoimmune disease. They had her on cortisone. I took her to a specialist and they said not autoimmune, but her paw had severe staph infection that was recurrent, so intermittent antibiotics kept it under control although we could never figure out what caused it in the first place. She began getting really weak and losing weight early in November and I knew the time was getting near. I had to be away and I struggled with the thought if it would be better or more stressful for her to be boarded while I was away, or if my love and wanting her to be here was keeping her here, would she still be alive when I returned. I chose to put down enough food for the four days I’d be gone and a clean litter box. She was still ok when I got back but soon became unable to walk. I kept water by her bedside and carried her numerous times during the day back and forth for food and the litter box. I kept wondering if she was in pain, and if I was wrong for keeping her alive, but she would always purr whenever I picked her up so I rationalized that if she was purring, she couldn't be in pain. It seemed oxymoronic. At times I would catch myself crying because I was missing her and she wasn't even gone. So I would laugh at myself for being in the future, not in the moment, enjoying being with her while we are still together. Sunday I called the vet so first thing the next morning she would get the message and call me right back, Andi wasn't doing well and I just wanted to ask her about when (if) it is the right time to make the decision about putting a friend to sleep. Monday morning I took care of her as usual, and she purred with me, and then I went out. I left her in her bed on the floor next to the radiator, covered by a towel, with her water dish within reach. I came home as usual later that day on November 27th and immediately went to her. I had been out for several hours and I always attended to her needs as soon as I got home. She didn't purr this time when I picked her up. She didn't want to eat or use the litter box. I checked my messages and the vet had called, so I got the phone and called the vet and left another message while holding her in the bathroom, wrapped in a towel. She threw up blood, and that signified the beginning of her leaving her body. I think it was about 15 minutes, and I stayed with her, crying and stroking her the whole time while she died in my arms. I think it was one of the most painful and courageous things I have ever done, to be fully present, and feel everything, and wonder if I had done the right thing, allowing her to die in this way. Did I cause or permit her any unnecessary pain? And I still don't talk about it because it is so hard and painful when I go back to that space. I cleaned her and smudged her and cut my pink baby blanket in half. She could have half and I would have half. I put it in the bottom of a wooden case that champagne had come in, (I had found it on the street and thought what a perfect place to keep my CD’s) and curled her in her favorite position, and anointed her with the essential oils of sandalwood, frankincense and myrrh, and placed a sprig of dried white sage in with her and a crystal. My dad buried her near the big rock on his property where she used to like to sit in the shade on warm summer days.
So I empathize with you about your loss, and thank you for creating the opportunity for me to share mine, for the first time.
If you would like to write to Lee aka Wondrous ,you may send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
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