You know, it was a little over ten years ago that we first met. I was a small little kitty. I’d left my mom, and my brothers and sisters, and I didn’t understand why. I missed my mom a lot. And I missed my siblings. We’d had so many good times, playing and sleeping and purring together. It was fun.
But then we were all separated. One by one we all said a quick good bye to each other, and had to go our separate ways. We didn’t know why. We didn’t understand, and there was no one there to explain it to us.
And then you came along. You had been looking for a kitty just like me, and you’d been looking for a while. And as soon as you saw me, you ran over and picked me up and held me, stroking my fur and kissing me and telling me I was just purr-fect! And as nervous as I was, I couldn’t help purring back to you. It’s how we kitties communicate, you know.
And I knew. I knew you were the one I was meant to be with. You knew it, too!
And I went home with you. We had wonderful times together. I met my new kitty brothers and sister, and we became great friends! We had wonderful times together. Especially in the middle of the night when we’d chase each other up and down the steps and wake you and the rest of the house up late at night. But because we were so cute, you couldn’t be mad at us!
There were doggies there, too. I’d never really been around dogs before, so that took some getting used to…on both sides. I had to show them my claws several times before they realized who was the new boss in the house. But they learned, and we all eventually became good friends. I bet you didn’t know about all the times we got together and played tricks on you, throwing pillows around, and eating each other’s food, and watching those doggies chew the baseboards while we dug holes in the plants and tried to get in the fish tank and make friends (sort of) with those pretty fishes that were swimming around.
I cried with you when you lost those two doggies you had when I came to live with you. That was awful. But I have to tell you, before Lassie and Rocky left, they had the chance to tell me some things that I’ve never forgotten, and I feel like I need to share them with you now.
Because, well, you know why….
They both told me the story about the Rainbow Bridge. It’s a place that we animals go to when it’s time to leave the earth and meet up with all the other pets you humans have had over the years. It’s a special place. It’s a place where we’re not in pain any longer; where we can run and play like we used to do when we were kittens and puppies. Where we’re free to roam wherever we want; where we can eat whatever we want and it won’t make us sick; where our claws won’t need clipping, and we won’t need those baths we hate so much.
It’s a place where old and sick animals go, and we’re suddenly young and well again. There are fields of flowers and grass to play in. For us kitties, there are mice and butterflies and bugs to chase, and there’s catnip growing everywhere. For the doggies, there are balls and frisbees to chase and pools to swim in, and socks and bones to chew on. And all the dog treats they could ever want! For us kitties, there are soft warm beds to cuddle up in, and balls of yarn to bat around. There are spots of sunlight to chase, and all kinds of furniture to jump up on….we can go as high up as we want and play King of the Mountain. And we won’t get hurt when we jump down.
Doesn’t it sound like the best of places? The bad part is, we have to leave you, our very special and very beloved owners, in order to go there. It means we’re both going to be sad, because we have to say good bye. And sometimes it’s a painful good bye. Neither of us wants to do it, but we know there’s not really a choice.
But the good part is, when we pets get to the Rainbow Bridge, and we cross over it, we’re not only young again, not sick and hurting any more, but we’re there waiting for you to come and get us.
Don’t worry, because we’ll have plenty of things to do while we’re waiting for you. It may be a lot of years before you come for us, but we won’t forget you. We’ll just be waiting there with our friends, playing and eating all kinds of wonderful treats. For us, the time will pass so quickly we won’t even know how long it’s been.
But we won’t forget you. Just like you won’t forget us. And on your way to Heaven, you’ll either stop by and get us, or we’ll be waiting for you in your special heavenly mansion. That’s not our decision to make, you know; only God plans that. But we WILL be with you again. Forever.
And now, I know you don’t want to hear this from me, but you have to. I’ve had the most wonderful life with you. It’s been everything I could ever hope for. You’re the best kitty mommy ever. But it’s time now for me to leave. You see, I’m in pain. My legs don’t work very well any more, and I can’t walk without hurting. And I’m not able to digest my food the way I used to anymore, and that’s making me feel worse. The pain meds you’re giving me help, but they can’t make me well. I really don’t want to leave you, and I’d be happy to keep lying beside you every night purring you to sleep, but it’s just not something I can keep doing. I’m tired, and I need to go where I can be pain free again.
I love you. I know there are people who say we animals don’t know what love is, but they’re wrong. We animals know love. Unconditional love. I would do anything for you. And now you have to do this for me. Let me go to the Rainbow Bridge. Let me go with my friends and wait for you. I promise we’ll be together again. And I’ll be ready to play and purr and cuddle, and I’ll even let you clip my claws without trying to bite you like I always did.
Until that time comes, please know I love you. And I always will.
Until we meet again……
Artwork by Stella Violano…Fine Art America