Wednesday, May 03, 2006

life everlasting

Had my birthday this past Saturday. Of course I celebrated by having a burial ceremony in the back yard for my cat Mocha (see previous post.) It was a lovely ceremony. My husband's very compassionate toward the kids when they lose a pet. He buried her before I picked up my sons, so they wouldn't have to see her (unfortunately his eleven year old daughter was the one who found her in the basement.) Then he let each child (and me) put some dirt on her grave and say something nice about her. Noah, my youngest son, went first. "I had her my whole life. Thank you for being a good cat,"he said bravely as he shoveled some dirt on the grave. Then he stepped away sniffling and handed the shovel back to Rick. Adrienne went next and thanked her for being a nice cat as well. Then she handed the shovel to Tanner, the oldest. A few weeks ago he had come up to me with a serious and mournful look on his face. He was always forgetting to feed and water her and I had reminded him to do so that day. When he walked in and called her name she didn't move. He had to walk up and touch her to get her to stir and it panicked him. I know he was worried that his forgetting to feed her and water her the previous day had killed her. Luckily, when Adrienne found her she had plenty of food and water, so that wasn't what put her over the edge. oldest son could not put a shovel full of earth on top of her on Saturday. He just stood there trying to draw his tears back into his eyes.

So on my 38th birthday I lose my cat of nineteen years. Most people would be depressed about that. But in her chosing that day in particular she helped to remind me how very briefly each of us is here. I regret her last few years were spent rather lonely in the basement (Rick's daughter has asthma and is very allergic to cats. Through limited exposure her allergy seems to be decreasing, but we couldn't have Mocha up in the living area of the house.) I actually considered putting her to sleep the last few years between the lack of quality of life she had and her poor health. But the vet never recommended it, and I just couldn't see ending her life because she didn't have much of one by my standards. Perhaps she was content to live out her final couple of years sleeping in a cool dry place, with enough water and food to sustain her. Who am I to judge?

The kids asked where Mocha went after she was gone. I told them I really don't know. But it made me think some more about that. Life is short. Life is a beautiful gift. I think that afterlife exists in what we leave behind us. The memories we have created. Our genenitic memories we have passed onto our children and our children's children.

Here are some images of memories of me and mine...


Design Goddess said...

Nice pics! :)

Glad to be a part of your life! :)

Gareth said...

Those have got to be the best set of family pics that I have seen for a long time. Thanks for sharing them :)
See I actually thought that it was Tanner that was your husband's child. I guess because of the red hair and the other 3 have darker hair.
Moucha will be missed but never forgotten. Or should that be FURgotten :p (sorry, I'm buying a new joke book next week lol).
Glad to be part of your life too hehehehehehe.

tiggysmum70 said...

Hey there young lady. Great family pictures. Glad to see you happy!!!


state of grace said...


Glad you're a part of my life too. Thanks for the grown up company the other day :)

Actually, Noah and Adri look like siblings, and Tanner looks like...well just Tanner. He actually looks like his dad minus the red hair (ex has brown.)
But here's the tally-

Rick- Adrienne
Zen- Tanner and Noah
Rick AND Zen- Anna

Welcome to the blended millenium.

Thanks! It's great to be happy. But blending does have challenges. Ex's can be wonderful (as mine and his wife are) or not (as....well you can guess I'm sure.)

New post next week. Happy Mother's Day to you Tigs.



Gareth said...

Happy Mothers Day friend :)
Hope you and your family are having a really happy and fun filled day.

state of grace said...

Thanks Gareth!

Just me, Anna and Rick (on his way home from work now.) Quiet day which is nice.


april said...

I know what you mean about being reminded how briefly we are each here. Often the strangest things make me think about how quickly our lives actually go - and how in the grand scheme of things each one of us is really just a teeny tiny drop in a giant ocean.

I was also reminded by your post of when my own cat died a few years back.

I think your kids sound really lovely. That ceremony sounds like a nice way to help them say goodbye.

state of grace said...


Great to hear from you again! How goes Scotland?

I think having a child really brings a lot into focus. I was so busy being a single mom for so much of the boys early years that I missed a lot with them. I am soaking it up with Anna though. And being happily married helps me to focus on important things instead of constantly analyzing my place here on earth. Some day...

I will successfully live in the moment. Hopefully that will happen once I start getting a full nights sleep :) Otherwise if I meditate I may just fall asleep!