Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Blessings From Above

Blessings From Above

{L to R: Mittens (back), Amber (front), Ashley (back), Pearl (front), Teddy, Punkin, Tammy}

Our Lord grants us blessings
With every critter that He sends
For us to love and hold
And be our furry little friends.

God has bestowed on us
Warm fuzzy gifts from above;
Pets of all sizes and shapes –
Four-legged bundles of love.

We promise to care for them,
Faithful to the very end –
Our solemn guarantee.

However, time is short;
We have only a little while.
Our blessings from above
Fade into mem’ries and a smile.

Written by: Robyn Lynne Stacey
Date: February 4, 2007
In Memory of Ashley Mae 5/14/2000 – 1/30/2007

Four Feet In Heaven

We received the following poem 2/3/2007 from Dr. Wellman & his staff on a sympathy card. I thought it was very nice and worth sharing. it is.

Four Feet In Heaven
Alice E. Chase

Your favorite chair is vacant now
No eager purrs to greet me
No softly padded paws to run
Ecstatically to meet me.

No coaxing rubs, no plaintive cry
Will say it’s time for feeding –
I’ve put away your bowl
and all the things you won’t be needing.

But I will miss you, little friend
For I could never measure
The happiness you brought to me
The comfort and the pleasure.

And since God put you here to share
In earthly joy and sorrow
I’m sure there’ll be a place for you
In Heaven’s bright tomorrow!

The Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge…

This bridge connects Heaven and Earth. It is called the Rainbow Bridge because of its many colors.

When a beloved pet dies, he/she goes to the Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows, hills and valleys of lush green grass and fields of flowers for all our special friends to run and play together.

There is plenty of food, water and sunshine keeping our friends warm, comfortable and happy.

All the animals who had been old, ill and frail are restored to health and vigor. Those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by.

There is only one thing missing – one sorrow they endure. They each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind. They are not with their special person who loved them on Earth.

To keep from their sorrow, they run and play together until the day comes. Suddenly, one or maybe several, abruptly stops playing and looks into the distance. The nose twitches. The ears perk up. Bright eyes are fixed. An eager body quivers in anticipation. Suddenly, this one, or several, begins to run from the group. His/her legs carrying him/her faster and faster towards…you!

You have been seen. When you and your special friend(s) finally meet, you embrace him/her/them in your joyous embrace, never to be parted again. Happy kisses rain upon your face. Your hands again caress the beloved head(s), and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet(s)…your friend(s), so long gone from your life but never absent from your memory or your heart!

Then, you cross the Rainbow Bridge…together…never again to be separated.

Compiled by me from two similar versions…both authors unknown.

February 14, 2007 (Wednesday)

Happy St. Valentine’s Day my little sweetheart.

We picked up little Miss Ashley about 4pm today.

Exactly 3 mos. Until Ashley’s 7th birthday.

Ashley’s ashes were placed in a very nice cedar box with a nameplate on the top and a small padlock with a set of keys. They placed the cedar box in a royal blue velvet-like drawstring bag with these words in gold script writing:

"Until we meet again at the Rainbow Bridge"

Also included, a certificate from Pinehill Pet & Horse Cemetery in Bowie, TX. The certificate reads:

Certificate of Cremation
Gone but not forgotten
This certifies that on
February 8, 2007
Beloved friend and companion of the
Stacey Family
was cremated by Pinehill Pet and Horse Cemetery.
(signed by) Brother Ben Larsen

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

And God Asked the Feline Spirit

And God asked the feline spirit,
“Are you ready to come home?”
“Oh, yes, quite so,” replied the precious soul,
And, as a cat, you know I am most able
to decide anything for myself.”

“Are you coming then?” Asked God.
“Soon,” replied the whiskered angel,
“But I must come slowly
for my human friends are troubled.
For you see, they need me, quite certainly.”

“But don’t they understand?” Asked God,
That you’ll never leave them?
That your souls are intertwined. For all eternity?
That nothing is created or destroyed?
It just is…forever and ever and ever.”

“Eventually they will understand,”
replied the glorious cat.
“For I will whisper into their hearts
that I am always with them.
I just am…forever and ever and ever.”

~ Author Unknown ~

Friday, February 2, 2007

January 31, 2007 (Wednesday)

I called Dr. Wellman’s office to let them know Ashley passed away. We brought her body to them about 10:45 a.m. They have a pet cemetery that also does cremation pick the critters up once a week. Unfortunately, that day was today. The people came earlier than usual today because we got snow.

Now, Dr. Wellman’s office has to hold Ashley’s body until next Wednesday, February the 7th. They said her urn/ashes box should be ready for pick up the following Wednesday, St. Valentine’s Day, February 14th.

Ironic, I get my little bundle of love back on St. Valentine’s Day.

Interesting and ironic, also, is I will get her back as ashes – her nickname was “Ashes”.

As for the other kitties, this morning, Ashley’s sister, Cindy, came by to see her and appeared to offer her final farewells, as she left, she suffered an asthma attack. She’s ok though. Teddy, who always considered Ashley his girlfriend, even though the feelings were not mutual, spent the morning searching the living room for her in all the places she used to go. When he couldn’t find her, I picked him up and showed him where she was. He looked at her intently – as if waiting for her to move – then panicked and ran to another part of the house.

The house seemed a little empty and quieter today.

I also called Dr. Harris’ office today. Donna, one of the assistants, said she was sorry and that she’d let Dr. Harris know when she gets back next week.

Another entry will be made when we pick up our little sweetheart on St. Valentine’s Day. We will find a special place for this special little girl.

I hope you know I did all I could for you and everything I did (the long car rides to Dallas, hand feeding, taking you out from under the couch, giving you medicine, etc.) was for you with hopes of giving you a chance!

Farewell, my sweetheart, rest in peace. Be with Jesus, Dad and all our furry friends until someday we meet again! I'll love you always! XO

The last entry will be the Rainbow Bridge & a poem I wrote for Miss Ashley.

January 30, 2007 (Tuesday)

I got Ashley up this morning for her breakfast. She was having a difficult time breathing through all the congestion. I cleared out her right nostril which had a lot of mucus build-up.

I set Ashley in front of the water bowl, and she got a drink on her own. I, then, placed her in the litter box, and she peed. She got out of the litter box on her own and lied down on the floor. I picked her up and placed her in the usual place I feed her. I feed her in a medium-size box – a Kraft cheese box from Sam’s. It keeps her in one place; so, she can’t back too far away from me when I hand feed her.

Ashley lied down in the box. This is not normal. She’s very weak. She couldn’t sit for long periods to eat. I hand-fed Ashley, but it was very difficult, and she fought me quite a bit. I managed to get her to eat her usual ¼ can of cat food. Ashley struggled to eat and breathe. She seems to be still breathing partially through her mouth. The sides of her mouth blow out slightly as she exhales. She gags sometimes as she tries to eat and swallow because of the mucus she’s also swallowing.

The noise she makes sounds kind of like, as Mom described it and I have to agree, a percolating coffee pot.

After Ashley finished her breakfast, I gave her the Clindamycin. Hopefully, it will help her with her congestion. I followed the Clindamycin with a little bit of water from her little bottle.

I placed Ashley on the couch to rest, which she seemed to be doing.

Today is Tuesday. Dr. Wellman has surgeries all day today; so, I will have to wait until tomorrow, Wednesday, to call and see if there is anything else we can do for her. She can’t have any Dexamethasone until at least Friday and the Clindamycin doesn’t seem to be working.

Mom had a doctor’s appt. today. When we left, Ashley was resting on the couch. I made sure her nose and mouth were clear of mucus. I gave her a kiss and hug and told her I loved her and I’d see her later.

After returning home, I checked on Ashley. She had some mucus coming out of her nose. I took her out from under the couch and cleaned out her nose with a tissue (Kleenex). While we were out, we stopped and got two new kitty beds to try to make her more comfortable. One is a pad-like bed that’s supposed to keep them warm with their own body heat. The other is a low-rise round bed. We figured she could use the low-rise bed to rest her head on as she tries to sleep, as she rests upright with her feet tucked under her. She doesn’t sleep on her side much lately because of the congestion going down her throat.

After cleaning her little nose, I placed her in the low rise round bed. She laid in it until I got her supper. I let her rest first because she seemed so peaceful. As expected, she first laid upright with her feet under her and her chin resting on the low rise sides. She then lay on her side. I was surprised to see her lay on her side, kind of peaceful-like. I let her stay until about 7:30 – 7:45 p.m.

About this time, I took her to the litter box. I placed her in front of the litter box because I knew she was weak. I didn’t want her to fall – her legs sometimes give out because she’s so weak – into the litter. She just laid down where I set her down.

I took her and placed her in the box where I feed her. When I placed her there, she laid down. She made some congestion noises, and I tried to talk calmly to her telling her it was time for supper. I put a very small amount of food on the tip of my finger and placed it in her mouth. She tried to eat it but it was a struggle. I tried with a couple more small fingertips of food. I had to really pry her mouth open but with her paw she pushed me away. I could see she was really struggling. I decided after she ate a very small amount not to force her. There really didn’t seem to be a way to feed her with her breathing so bad. She kept gagging on the congested mucus as she tried to swallow it. For a moment, I think she may have choked a little on the mucus, as I had to tap her on her side, because her tongue came out of her mouth on one side and her eyes got a little glazed. When I tapped her side a couple of times, she sort of snapped out of it.

I picked her up and sat in a chair with her. I took a warm wet face cloth and washed the food from her mouth, face and paw and the mucus from her nose. I sat there and held her as she struggled to breathe. I told her I would call Dr. Wellman in the morning to see if there was something he could give her or me to give to her. Then, again, she started having problems with the congestion as if she may have gagged on the mucus. I tried to make sure her head was not leaning back, so, as to not let the mucus drain down her throat. Then, suddenly, as I held her and she clung to me, her body twitched. Her tongue again came out slightly. I tried to tap her side again, but she began to get very limp. Her legs twitched a couple more times and then her body released, resulting in her peeing and going completely limp.

It was approx. 8:05 or 8:10 p.m.

I held her until I was completely sure she had passed away. I cried and told her I was sorry. I did all I could. I didn’t know what else to do.

As I said to her, I was going to call Dr. Wellman’s office tomorrow to find out if there was anything else we could give Ashley instead of the Clindamycin while waiting for Friday for her to be able to have another injection of Dexamethasone. I didn’t call today, as I said, because I know he does only surgeries on Tuesday. I guess I should have called anyway, maybe he would’ve had something he could have given her or us to give her.

Maybe she’s better off. I’m sure she’s gone to see Jesus because she was so sweet. It’s too bad she was so young – 6 yrs old, just 3 ½ months shy of her 7th birthday.

Now, tomorrow, I’ll have to call Dr. Wellman’s office and Dr. Harris’ office. Dr. Harris won’t find out until next week when she gets back from vacation.

Meanwhile, I placed Ashley in an old laundry basket with an old pillow, complete with old pillow case, in it. I allowed the other cats and the dogs to go up to the basket and sniff around. I did this with Gizzy, our last kitty that passed away due to cancer. The other critters seem very interested. They all knew she was sick and seemed to show a great deal of concern. Hershey, one dog, would look at Ashley and then us. With concern and wrinkling up his face, he would look at us like "fix her". Copper, another dog, would sit by her and baby-sit her; so, no one could bother her. One by one, each of the cats would go up to the basket and check on her. Some would sit and stare. I wondered what was going through their minds. One, the youngest, Katy, has never seen another critter pass away. She honestly appeared to not understand. As Ashley lay in the basket, Katy placed her paws through the holes in the basket attempting to try to play with Ashley's paws. When she didn't get a response, Katy would just sit and stare at Ashley. This was repeated for about for about 20 minutes. Finally, after staring at Ashley for a few final minutes, Katy went about her business. This way the other cats and dogs were able to see what had become of Ashley. I didn't want them to wonder where she went. I wanted them to know what happened and to understand Ashley didn't just disappear. I left Ashley's body in the basket for the night. I placed an old towel used for the critters over her body, except for her head. I placed her beside my bed; so, she would be near me. All the other cats and dogs got their chance to say good-bye. Ashley was a great big part of their lives, as she has been of ours.