Today is the day I think of you with tears in my eyes. I mark the calendar. I count it out on my fingers. I wonder how nine years have slipped by without you in my life. I think about the last day. I don’t want to, but I cannot forget it. I think about all the other last days I’ve had to witness since you’ve been gone, my Mother, cats: Stanley, Taz, Sasha, little kittens too young to have names, Bob Dole, Bobette, so many others.
I worry about the ones to come.
©2001 Robin A.F. Olson. My lovely, Squeegee.
You were my “before-cat”—before I knew about raw feeding and that the grain in your dry food was the culprit, causing your diabetes. It left you overweight and demanded I learn about giving you shots of insulin every day to keep you alive. If I had known I could have saved you simply by changing your food, even to just grain free canned food, you might still be with me today. You might never have gotten cancer, which when it entered your lungs, I knew the time we shared together was coming to an end.
©2001 Robin A.F. Olson. Squeegee finds her place in the sun.
You were before I had the courage to foster more than a single cat, when I worked long hours away from home, hiring a pet sitter to stay with you each day so you wouldn’t be lonely. Back then it was just you, me and Stanley, my sweet tuxedo cat who died a few months after you did.
It was back when I had a life. I could leave the house for more than a day and not worry. My hair wasn’t falling out in clumps. The quilted lines under my gray eyes hadn’t even begun to form.
©2003 Judith K Feminella. I asked my Mother to take some photos of Squeegee once I found out she only had a few months left to live. I'm so glad I have these keepsakes of us together.
Part of my sadness is linked to missing the simplicity of my old life and you represented that life. You were also the last connection I had to my marriage, what there was of one. He didn’t even know you were sick, nor cared that you were slipping away. Now he’s on that list of last days, too, with cancer of the salivary glands and no health insurance to save his life.
©2003 Robin A.F. Olson. A few hours before I had to put Squeegee down, she climbed onto the bed for the first time in months. The lung cancer was so bad she could hardly move, let alone jump on the bed. I took it as her way of saying goodbye, a gift I will always cherish.
I care that he’s sick and I ache because he suffers. I ask myself how anyone can grow old and not have so much pain in their heart from witnessing one loss after another that they have any happiness left? I honestly don’t know the answer to that any more.
You were the cat I didn’t want who ended up being my best friend and deeply treasured companion. You had a silly meow, which earned you your name; Squeegee, but you deserved more, so after some time I added: “The Baroness von FiFi.” You should have a regal, elegant name even if you weren’t a purebred cat.
©1990 Robin A.F. Olson. Squeegee and I take a nap without a worry in our hearts, a very long time ago.
I mourn the fact that I couldn’t give you the gift of a healthier life, but I honor your memory today by sharing your story with others.
©2003 Robin A.F. Olson. Farewell, my sweet.
I miss you so very much, Fifi. Until we meet again…