Goodbye, My Friend

Goodbye, My Friend

Rest in Peace, little Ashes.
Mar 1996 – Oct. 18 2008

This weekend, my little Ashes passed away. She was our little grey blob of a housecat, she came into our home when I was in 5th grade. She brought happiness and unreserved love into a household that sorely needed it. When, at times, it seemed like there was no one for you, there was Ashes, for each one of us. It’s difficult for me to talk about Ashes like this… My mind wanders from the happy times and the bad, from the many funny, annoying, happy, lazy, exciting times we had together. In the end of the summer, she began to limp. After taking her to the vet, she fell ill. By the time the leaves changed colors, she was gone.

I never understood why people hated cats. I could never understand the aloof, timid, or scary cat that people spoke about. Of course, Ashes has many times when she would do her own thing. But being with her, you understood her life revolved around the world of our family. Sometimes, I think, it was her main goal in life to lay as closely as possible to you because it would make her so incredibly content. I cried sometimes, to think that there was a little being that loved me so honestly and whole-heartedly, that just sitting next to her made her so happy.

She was so trusting of us… Sometimes to her own downfall. When we were both younger, she once climbed a tall pine tree all the way to the top. I came outside to look for her, and when I called out her name, she replied by meowing pitifully from the branches of the tree. I went underneath and looked up and, unthinkingly, held my arms out and called out her name again. Poor kitty! Looking down, I guess she saw that I was offering to catch her, so she finally let go. To me from the ground, she looked like a rocketing flurry of claws and fur! I stepped aside, afraid for my own skin, and she fell splat (on all fours, as they do)!! I felt really bad for panicking like that, but I had not expected her to actually let go, since most cats don’t trust anyone to take them out of trees. But she did, and I’ve always felt guilty for not catching her when she fell. Thankfully though, she was somehow fine from the incident (thank goodness for the toughness of younger cats)!

I’m sorry I’ve made this so sad and mushy. Truth is, I think we all were surprised at how much she affected our lives. To have a little diligent kitty who always waited at the door when you came home to greet you (and beg for food too!), and then to come home to an empty house hurts. To think that she’ll never meow her pleas to sleep in your bed, never curl up in her favorite spot under the tree this Christmas, never look out the window to watch the birds again hurts. To see the very shadows of our home, and to think she wouldn’t be in them ever again hurts. It pained me to see her life and her joys slowly move out as she got more and more sick… I am admittedly relieved that she doesn’t need to suffer any more. But I hope deeply that even in the end she remembered the happy times she had with us and the joy she brought to us. I hope you’ve found whatever it was that was under the stove you wanted, I hope you catch that laser beam dot you could never get your nimble paws on, and I hope there are no vacuum cleaners where you are. You will not be forgotten by any of us, our little Ashes.


  1. The Glass Urchin - Updates Tuesdays & Thursdays!

    [...] see blog “Goodbye, My Friend” for more about my little [...]

  2. bree

    omg that was beautiful. I’m bawling.
    Though I did laugh at “whatever it was under the stove that you wanted” haha it’s like cats play hide-and-go-seek with imaginary friends.

  3. Chthon

    Man, I’ve always loved cats too myself. Ashes reminds me of my mom’s new cat Sam who never complains and just seems to know when you need to pet something. The world needs more cat lovers. :)
    I’m sad that you lost your cat, but be happy that you were able to give her such a fulfilling life.

  4. shivi

    ;_; what nice words. I always wanted a pet that would love me when i was down. Fish never showed much love >.>.
    I’m pretty sure there would be more cat lovers if a lot of us weren’t allergic to them.

  5. Leda

    *sniffle* That was lovely, thank you so much. I’m so sorry for your loss. I must go home and squeeze my ‘kids’.

  6. Auilix

    Thanks everyone for your condolences.
    @ Leda – the great thing about Ashes was she was like a kid at some points, playing games and vying for attention… But also like a good friend at other points, obviously choosing to hang out with you because it made her happy, not just because she needed you.
    @ Shivi – I know quite a few people who love cats and are allergic to them… The key thing- meds!
    @Chthon – Yes, I hope she remembers the happy times and not the pain, in her last moments or wherever she is now.
    @bree – Yeah, Ashes just loved to dig under the stove, occasionally eat dust, and then continue to attack things. She also used to put her paws under the door from the other side if we were in the room and the door was closed. She looked as if she was trying to attack something, but I think she might have just been seeking attention :P

  7. Chthon

    More like when she was putting her paws under the door, she was saying “See? I washed my hands. Can I eat now?” XD

  8. Felicity

    I share your pain, and was in tears hearing your rememberances. I have lost a lot of cats over a lifetime. Sometimes it makes me scared to love so much. Because there are some who you seem to connect with in such a special way. They make you laugh, and bring you joy. The time spent together is precious. It’s like you know what the other is thinking and feeling. Guess what? Beloved cat feels the same towards you as you do for him/her. If you were to die first, cat would feel same saddness, but would go on living. So must you.

  9. Auilix

    Thanks for your kind words… It hurts a lot because Ashes was my first real pet (we had a bunny and hamsters before, but none of them were around for half as long as she was, and none of them had the lovingly insistent personality that she had)…. We have since adopted two new kittens, and I look at them knowing I will eventually love them like I did Ashes, they will go through their life sharing their happiness with us, and they will eventually go someday too. I hope it’s a long time from now, and I hope we can give them as much love as Ashes gave us.

  10. Mac

    I got into your blog by incident.. but i saw something about cats. Your lose make me sad too :(
    I am a big cat lover too, and not so far ago, my beloved Mishu died in the “hands” of 4 or 5 dogs… I tought that i was the only one who can be this sad about a cat, but thanks to you i know that it’s not just myself.

  11. laura

    Ashes is always with you… post was so unguarded so full of unconditional love for your Ashes…..the good memories come…cats are lovely bright spirits and friends.

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