"Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands........" 1 Thessalonians 4:11

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Farewell Max

It's been almost 17 years since this striped, soft ball of fur with 7 claws on each foot, entered our lives. When we lived in the city, he was the neighborhood prowler and warrior. There was no cat too big or too mean to win over Max. He was king of his territory. When we moved out here to the farm, Max was upset and ran away to find his old home in the city............and he let us know that he was a city kitty, not a country prowler. Four days later, he returned, worn out and starving, but glad to be back with us............and soon accepted his more quiet and peaceful life. Over the years, he changed from the king rodent hunter to passively lying on the coolness of the front porch..............sleeping, while his tail flicked and his mouth quivered in some dream of catching his latest bounty..................a surrendered country gentleman.
 I 've been preparing myself for this day..................all of the signs have been here in front of me for the past week.  Yesterday, I found him, curled up in his favorite spot, where he had gone to sleep, and dreamt a dream of thick green woods, full of mice and other small creatures to chase..............this time, he kept on chasing them to where ever these sweet creatures go for eternity. No matter how much I was ready, I was not ready to let him go..........although I know it was the best and sweetest way for him to do so.
  As the years go by and we get whacked by life's stick of disappointments, I have always thought that our hearts are supposed to grow tougher............isn't that the way it works?? 
Well.............it has not happened for me yet.................or my heart just hasn't gotten that message.
For awhile, I will still fix an extra plate of food, go out and call Max's name and wait for him to bring me a small captured prize from his prowling, and shed a tear. For a little while ......................
farewell Max.
  

28 comments:

Tammy@Simple Southern Happiness said...

Bless your heart, I know its difficult to lose a furry member of the family. My heart goes out to you.

Daisy said...

Oh Kathleen, I am so sorry to hear this news about Max. I know how difficult it is to lose a pet. They are a part of the family in my house. Hugs to you my friend.

Mitzi said...

I understand completely. My kitty of 12 years has been changing in her habits and it has me worried. We do love our pets so much, don't we?

Muddling Through said...

I am so sorry, Kathleen. I know how it hurts to lose a fur baby. And I don't want to ever grow so tough that I can't feel, even if I have to feel pain. It is the opening up of ourselves to love that sometimes brings pain, but also great joy.
Hugs, Elaine

Farmgirl Cyn said...

So, so sorry. But what a sweet way to go. I think the worst part about having pets is knowing they won't be around forever....

nance marie said...

you got me crying...

Kelly said...

Kathleen I am so sorry to hear that Max has passed. It is painful and we share your pain. I hope we see them again. They are such a loved part of our lives. Mousers are the greatest! Much Love to you.

Paula said...

I am so-so sorry, Kathleen....
Our fur-babies (and feather-babies!) are so much a part of our families...

Marydon said...

Brings tears to my eyes ... it is so hard to loose part of our 'family'. May he forever enjoy his romping thru kitty-land.

Hugs of comfort ...

Happy PS weekend ~
TTFN ~
Marydon

lil red hen said...

Kathleen, I'm so sorry for your lose. I'm still grieving for my kitty who was killed in Feb. by dogs.(see Feb.13,2011 -- A Terrible Emptiness) They just become so much a part of our families. I like what you said about "wherever they go to spend eternity"; comforting.

Betty Lou said...

I hope that Max is in pet heaven with my little Scruffy. Scruffy, a Bichon, loved cats, and i am sure she has found Max by now. Max just probably doesn't know they are supposed to be friends. Our pets are family and we grieve for them just as we would another member. My heart goes out to you.

Vickie said...

Kathleen, so sorry to hear about Max. He will be so missed. But I think you're wrong about our hearts growing harder. I think as we age and mature, our hearts become softer and more open to love and others around us. You're heart is certainly open and soft as you grieve for your kitty. Sending big hugs your way.

Gingerbreadshouse7 said...

Kathleen, I'm sorry for your grief! I know how it feels to lose a pet that you have loved and had for so many years..I have lost three pets that I had for many years...the pain is so hard to bear.. I won't let myself suffer it again if I can help it. I try not to fall in love looking at one..

April Mechelle said...

Feeling you lost with you Kathleen. My kitty Sli was 19 years old when she laid down forever. Thanking of you today... Hugs!!!

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Kathleen, we too have lost beloved pets, cats and dogs. It's as difficult as losing a human family member because pets accept us and ask very little (usually).

Stickhorsecowgirls said...

I am so sorry--I can tell Max was a really special kitty.
I love my pets dearly, and it so hard to say goodbye. I heard a teaching by Elisabeth Elliot in which she said that when Jesus was in the wilderness for forty days, Scripture says that the wild beasts were with him.
I always thought that it meant that they were there to harrass him sent by the Evil one, but Elisabeth said her take on it was that they were sent to minister to him. I love that thought. I know that my dogs and cats give me much love and comfort. Our old barn cat Twister who lived to 16 yrs. old, followed my husband everywhere. Whenever my hubby had a headache or felt bad and went to lie down, there big old Twister would be in the crook of his arm with his head on my husband's shoulder!
Bless Max --I truly believe our beloved pets are "sent" to us and will greet us once again. Pottery artist Julie Whitmore of www.juliewhitmorepottery.blogspot.com wrote a lovely post 6/23 titled Best Pal about her love for dogs. She said "Something so full of love and goodness just must be forever." Of course, I can't say for sure, but it is my hope!

The Woodbury's said...

I cannot begin to tell you how truly, truly sorry I am for your loss of Max. My heart goes out to you! Pets are really just the fuzziest members of our family, aren't they? (Although in some cases, it might depend on the family member!) I'll be thinking of you!

LindaSueBuhl said...

we don't get tougher - I'm older than you and have tears for your Max - our critters give us SO much and their lives are short - too short. Hugs to you,

Ardith said...

Tough hearts? I don't think so! My eyes cried for you and for Max. I have one exactly like Max, who's name is Jax, and I know I will cry when he leaves us. And don't tell me there isn't an animal heaven!! :) We are very dry up here in OK also, but hanging in. Take care.........

KathyB. said...

Oh, I am sorry Max is no longer there for you except in memory. He was well-loved and I think he must have come to enjoy his country life, especially his country naps.

KathyB. said...

P.S. I don't think our hearts grow harder with age, but sometimes I wish they would.

grammy said...

sorry about Max...
my cat is 16 or 17...she has never been anything close to a warrior cat (o: we have had Tom's that fit that description though. She is smallish and prissy...looks like a Siamese even though she was born in a barn...for real (o:
what signs did you notice...???
It is hard to let them go....and I think of new tiny kittens or puppies and frankly I think....it is just to hard when they get old.
Once again my sympathy goes out to you.

Flat Creek Farm said...

Tears here - and I do know exactly where you are coming from (all too many times here - but would not have traded any of my fur or feather kids for anything). What a beautiful story of precious Max - what a handsome and wonderful fella he was. Bless you for loving him so. Hugs, Tammy

Sue said...

I am so sorry kathleen for your loss of Max, but I am so glad that your heart is so soft. I lost my cat Tiger last year,I know how you feel, and I too did the same things for awhile, like you did.
Blessings
Sue

Jane Smith said...

I don't think God wants our hearts to get tough. A tough heart leads to a hard heart that doesn't let love flow.

My heart goes out to you.

Terry and Linda said...

Oh, Dear Kathleen! I am so sorry. It is never easy to lose a pet for they are more than pets they are our friends and our children and our loyal supports!
I'm crying for you and your loss.

Linda
http://coloradofarmlife.wordpress.com
http://deltacountyhistoricalsociety.wordpress.com

peggy said...

Kathleen, I have a Max also and he looks like your dear one. Mine is really the neighbor's but he spends all summer at my house and I worry about him all winter. He is not well cared for and is so old. I know your Max was loved, I'm so sorry for your loss.

Conni said...

I am just starting to catch up on my blog reading - and was so sorry to learn of your loss of Max. We lost one of our old cats two weeks ago. She was nearly 20. My husband was giving her subcutaneous fluid therapy every four days for the past three months - and that helped her feel a bit better but her little organs were failing. No, you don't ever get used to it.
Hugs...