Saturday, July 08, 2006

A year ago today, I went to the SMHS and picked out two kittens, Assumpta and Dibley. Rusty, my dear companion in cat fur, died on July 5 and I felt bereft. Cats fill a place in my heart that no other creature can nurture. As a small child I loved cats and this affection hasn't changed.

The cat counselor at the humane society suggested that Dibley, a tiny orange domestic shorthair would be happier with his sister staying with him. A two-for-one cat special on neutering was in effect and fees would be waived if I took both kittens. I was delighted! A beautiful little black and white girl kitten could be mine, too. Assumpta and Dibley came home with me after I asked Mr. C. to go meet the kittens.

A hurricane threathened the Coast right after the little kittens came to our home.

The kittens grew into bigger kittens. They played with each other and took naps with me.

Then, a nasty storm developed in the Gulf, blew through Florida before it strengthened into Katrina. We packed up the kittens into their carriers (along with older cat, Andy) and evacuated to safety.

After the storm, Mr. C. and LS returned to the Coast with Andy. LD and I took the kittens to LLS and LSiL's home. Assumpta and Dibley met Cousin Bea and Uncle Lewis. The kittens loved being with the older cats and after a few days of hissing and territorial battles, they were welcomed into a new home. After I left, the kittens stayed to comfort LD who was then enrolled in school there.

LD returned to us after her first semester but Assumpta and Dibley stayed. Uncle Lewis joined the Church Invisible for cats, Bea became enamoured of Assumpta and Dibley learned to go outside to explore.

This week I wrote a medical release for Assumpta and Dibley so they may continue to have care under LLS's name instead of mine up there. I felt I was signing a relinquisment of parental rights although I know I was not. I stared at the paper over a twenty four hour period unable to put my signature to the paper. The kittens are happy where they are. Their home is with LLS and LSiL, not here and it would be traumatic to move them into our home again. They are loved and enjoyed in their new home.

The damn storm affected so many things on so many levels. I'm talking about cats here and getting worked up. Imagine how it is for families who are displaced, spouses separated by the storm so jobs can be gotten and for all the grandparents who moved away forever after the storm. We are dealing with traumas on all levels. We are dealing with loss, grief, frustration and fear of the future.

You recall that I have two new kittens, Whistle and Fish who make their home with us. I love them. Having said that, no cat replaces another one you've lost as no person replaces one you've lost. Love expands but grief remembers.

Yours,
St. Casserole

12 comments:

Songbird said...

I will tell you how much this touches me as soon as I finish wiping my eyes.
(((Assumpta, Dibley and all the other kitties and people in the extended Casserole family)))

cheesehead said...

I'm crying too, and I don't even like cats.

But I love St Cass...

Quotidian Grace said...

"Love expands, but grief remembers."
What powerful words!

seawitch said...

Katrina changed our lives in so many ways that it will be years before the full human cost is tallied.

But your words "Love expands, but grief remembers" tells the story of how we are coping. Even in our grief, love is expanding.

{{{HUGS}}}

Sue said...

(o)

Kathryn said...

With no such upheaval in my life, I wept and will doubtless weep again at the prospect or rehoming Very Small Pony,- who has become a symbol of my children growing up and leaving me.
Not in the same league, but your words resonated powerfully with me.
The way your love is expanding through this is a source of joy and admiration to we who read and love you...

Marie said...

All that grief, all that loss, and two kitties more. "Love expands, but grief remembers." ((((St. Cass)))

Princess of Everything (and then some) said...

(o)

see-through faith said...

what cheeshead said ...

SpookyRach said...

beautiful.

Psalmist said...

St. C, your post touched me. I've just returned home from a mini-vacation to my own two dear cats (who blogged for me as I packed, and who have a message for Whistle and Fish, btw). I have two of them because little Gracie, who I lost after just a year and a half, left me half-crazy with grief when she died. I'd always had just one at a time, and Gracie was the second cat I lost in two years. As a single with no children and no close family, I decided that I needed to "expand my love" and share my small home with two cats instead of one. Though my two don't really like each other much, I'm still not sorry I made that choice.

I think Whistle and Fish, and their predecessor feline companions, are most blessed to share life with you. And not primarily because you buy them furry mice and cat cookies. Hugs to you all.

the reverend mommy said...

Love expands but grief remembers.
Thank you.