In Memory of Nysa

There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: music and cats. — Albert Schweitzer

Baby Cat, Sweet Nysa, my Nysa Cadeau. I gave you the second name —Cadeau— in honor of your French blood line and because cadeau means gift in French. You were given to me by your breeder, but I soon came to realize you were a gift straight from God. Only God could have sent such marvelous companion as you. You were amazing.

Your devotion never failed to move me, your antics brought me such joy and your ability to out wit me was incredible. You were the unroller of toilet paper and the opener of drawers, cabinet doors and folding doors. My running joke was that I dreaded opening my telephone bill each month. I was afraid you had learned the international dialing codes and had spent hours talking to your Grand-mere in France. I always told you that if you only had thumbs, you could rule the world.

Your beauty made even strangers stop and ask about you. That sweet, little seal point BIG man face with those big China blue eyes could melt a stone. You knew you were beautiful and kept yourself Immaculately groomed. If I even touched you with slightly damp hands you would run away and give yourself an ’emergency bath.

You expected attention and when it wasn’t given in a timely manner you would tap the errant person (usually me) on top of the he’d, after subtly positioning yourself on the back of the chair or sofa. You signaled me rub your he’d, by cocking it one side. You spent so may years training me!

Your patience and understanding was incredible. For seventeen years, I dragged you from one end of this country to another. When I spent the last two years traveling for my work, you were right beside me. What a trooper!

When I realized all that traveling was getting too hard on you and me, I found a permanent job in Georgia. I wanted you to have a place to spend your senior years in comfort. I wanted you to have room to explore and hide or just sit in any spot you wanted and soak up the sun. It is so painful to know that you were only able to live in that big ole’ house in Kennesaw for about one month. I will carry guilt with me the rest of my life that I spent so much time of the last month fixing up that house and not enough time with you. Maybe I would have
seen the subtle signs that your were becoming sick.

Maybes; what if’s; if onlys; … the pain of human remorse. I only pray that you knew how much I loved you and that I didn’t condemn you to overwhelming pain during that last week . I wanted to try everything I could to make you better for even a little while. I was able to see the light in your eyes for a few hours, but the renal failure finally overtook your little body. When I got you back home from that last trip to the vet, you gave out that tiny, kittenish meow and then you were gone. I have to believe that was your Good-bye — to me. How ironic that you left this world on February 18th —- my daddy’s birthday. My daddy who died of renal failure, also. Now I have two reasons to dread February 18th.

I will leave it to the theologians to debate whether animals go to heaven. I really would like to know, but the best I can come up with is maybe. I’do know that you showed me a little bit of heaven (unconditional love) while you were on earth with me and that as long as my heart beats you will live in it.

Adieu (go with God), my sweet Baby Cat.