“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan

2.28.2012

the year of the cat


which just goes to show that you never know.
truly, really, no matter what you think.
you never know.

i didn't know she would move into my place; it was all about me moving into hers, and it took 2 months to accept i couldn't do it, 2 months of visiting her every day. 2 months of her alone in my mother's house, waiting on visits at the end of the day.  my mother had been gone from her life for 3 months, my brother her roommate for those weeks of the hospital, and then not.  then not.  

we began a journey.
a new line on my map and a new line on hers.





she played and slept and ate and chased and growled at dogs and other cats,
and then she learned to growl less.

i wonder how far back she remembers;
would she know her other home if i took her for a visit?
i like to think she would,
that she still thinks back to the time before now,
that she is just better than i at moving forward.

and then i think i haven't done that bad,
that i have moved at the speed of grief;
slower on loose gravel and into the dips
and as the road winds unseen under trees filled with summer,
knowing the straightaways lie fast and ahead,
knowing storms will come,
knowing they will pass.


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17 comments:

  1. the speed of grief... you can do nothing but go at your own pace, one foot in front of the other.

    i love that you two have traversed this year together, as difficult as it may have been for both of you. she sits at your feet now, you both there, in that same spot, together.

    whatever she remembers, clearly, she is home now.
    xoxo

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    1. we have seen this year through together. my mother's last gift to me - a gift that keeps me laughing. xoxo

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  2. Some of your best writing, my dear. I was half afraid that at the end you would say she was "gone"; I am so glad you have found yourselves home with each other. (((((HUGS))))) I wish you could see Kitty; she is skinny, curious and much more at home than she was at first.

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    1. thank you! hugs back to you, plus extras for kitty. :)

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  3. Yep, the speed of "slower on the loose gravel and into the dips ... ". That's what they call taking care of yourself, my friend... ; ]

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    1. sooz - thank you for that. for saying it out loud. i feel the same way, though it took a while for me to get there. xoxo

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  4. I love the photos with words on them. They combine 2 of your great talents, heart-stopping story telling with images and words. And your story reveals your strength in the year of grief. That cat, as well, is a strong soul. She's utterly gorgeous. You make a good pair. Yes, you do. xo

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  5. often Mrs M. and me think alike, in our response. we do again. 'the speed of grief'...i never thought of it that way. forever, now, i will. you and the skye cat survived. but then...we always knew you could.
    in my fondest of thought.

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  6. such a gift you have given each other ..cat and you traveling the road together...a very special way animals smooth the edges of our lives. Your writing and the photos as always rest in my weary heart.

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  7. "she learned the land, found the best secret places"...this is what we do via grieving. Lordy you are spot on there. Your Mom would just love that she can make you laugh girl!
    Laura

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  8. i feel my angelo has done this for me too. continues to do this for me: move me forward when i balk. thank goodness for creatures who help us to live in the moment.

    you have a way of saying what i don't know how to say: this is why i hang around.

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  9. I love this post. I lost my mom 8 months ago and have inherited her little dog. I also was going to mom's house to take care of the dog each day. I thought my sister was going to take her but she decided not too. I felt so bad leaving her alone everyday and night with the exception of my feed, water, take her out visits! So I brought her home one day and she adapted very well. My dog has accepted her although there are jealous moments from both animals. I know that mom would be so happy to know that I am caring for her "Baby". I, too, wonder if Baby remembers her life before living with me. Loved your words, especially, "moving at the speed of grief". Your words are so touching. I've been reading your blog since we were in the unravelling class. You write beautifully!

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  10. Touching post...and i love your new little buddy...I can only imagine your mom looking down and being grateful...knowing you are caring for her beloved pet...and yes...I do think the cat remembers...

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  11. She looks happy with you and at peace. I believe they remember, but they know to move forward. They know who feeds them.

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  12. I love seeing these images of Skye-cat & her transition, and yours. It has been a year of slow turns, I know. I kiss Skye's head & hold your heart with love & tenderness.

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  13. What a beautiful creature whose eyes match her name.
    If only she could tell you her stories.

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