Category Archives: Writing

Rest in peace my beautiful mother

Here we are a week away from the one year anniversary of my mother’s death as I start this blog post.  I haven’t done anything to create the post all year that I intended to do long before now. I remember that last year at this time we were on “death watch”. Mom had a catastrophic fall the day before Thanksgiving from which she did not recover. She died December 15, 2017. What follows is what I read at the memorial that we had for her near my sister’s house in northern Virginia. I’m also including the recap of her life that we included in the program for her memorial. And finally, some photos from her life as well as a link to the slide show that my brother-in-law created and played at her memorial.

Most people know that I’m a carbon copy of my mother. I look and sound just like her. So, I wanted to share some of those stories as well as others from my mother’s life. When I was growing up Mom’s friend Jean Fagan would call periodically. And every time that I answered she would always say “Hi Goldie, how are you?” And I would inevitably say “Hi Jean. It’s Toby.” And Jean would always say “Oh!! You sound just like your mother!” You don’t say!! Every time I would visit my Aunt Lilah and Uncle Roy, Aunt Lilah would always tell me how much I looked like my mother. One time I visited close to my birthday and Aunt Lilah wanted to buy me a birthday gift and asked what I needed.  I happened to need white shoes so she took me shopping. As I tried on the first pair and started walking around Aunt Lilah said “you even walk like your mother!!” That was one I had never heard before.

My favorite look-alike story happened at my cousin Lou’s wedding in Phoenix years ago. Most of the out-of-towners stayed at the same motel. I knew that my Uncle Roy had one brother but I don’t believe I had ever met him before. If I did, I was young and didn’t remember him. As I was walking along a corridor at the motel a man who resembled Uncle Roy was walking towards me. So I said “you must be Roy’s brother.” And without missing a beat he said “and you must be Goldie’s daughter.” Such fun memories.

There were certain things that got Mom to laugh. One of those was that whenever I visited Mom I would say upon seeing her and giving her a hug “are you my mother?” That was one of my favorite books by Dr. Seuss when I was little. There is one instance of this that really stands out and it’s from the last couple of years. I was visiting Mom at my sister Nina’s house and when I said “are you my mother?” her face lit up and she exclaimed “you always used to say that didn’t you??” That just warmed my heart to know that she remembered that until the end.

Another story is one that my sister just loves to hear. Ha ha! When Nina and I were teenagers Mom took us to Hawaii for vacation. I don’t remember much from that trip but this story is one that has stuck because I could always get a laugh out of Mom. Whenever the three of us were together I would always find a way to work this in at some point. We were heading out one day on that Hawaiian trip and Mom and I were at the elevator in the hotel waiting for Nina. But Nina was not right behind us like we thought. So I called down the hall “Nina, the elevator’s here!!” to try and get her to emerge from the hotel room. Well, that phrase came up many times over the years whenever Nina was dawdling and I would say “Nina, the elevator’s here!!” and Mom would always giggle. Mom and I were always on time. Nina? Not so much.

Lastly I wanted to share that my mother was one of my best friends. We shared so many of the same values and opinions and talked on the phone a lot. We both loved to laugh and I remember watching the series Soap with her and giggling. She visited me the year The Princess Bride was out and we went to see it. We spent most of the time laughing. We loved watching Dodger games and figure skating too. And she was somewhat prescient, or she was good at just plain guessing. When we chatted after Barack Obama gave his speech at the 2004 Democratic Convention she blurted out “That man’s going to be president some day!!” Okay, probably many people said that. But I remember being struck by that comment, especially when it came to pass. When I was in my mid 20s and wondering if I was going to get married she said “You will. And it’s going to be someone you already know.” Even that came to pass. My husband and I actually met in the early 80s but didn’t get together until 1988. When I struggled to get pregnant and cried on the phone to her over nearly three years she was always comforting and reassured me that it would happen. And of course she was right.

When her dementia got worse and I could no longer talk to her like I used to, I felt like I lost my best friend. She was still here physically but we could no longer hold a conversation. I have one last memory of the last time I saw her. My daughter and I visited over Labor Day weekend last year. We were all going to go to church that Sunday but I woke up with a headache and decided to skip church and rest. I sat in the living room with Mom and at one point she looked over at me and just stared. I waved and said “Hi Mom!!” and she smiled and said hi. I’ll never forget the look on her face as she stared at me. Did she not remember me? Or was she wondering why I was there since I wasn’t part of her daily routine? I’ll never know but I’m glad I had those moments with her.

I’m so grateful that I had her for as long as I did. I will never forget her love for her entire family, her compassion for her fellow human being and just her pleasant demeanor. She was the best mom a girl could have. Thank you Mom for your loving-kindness and compassion. I love you.

This was in the program for her memorial:

Goldie was born April 30, 1923 in Chicago, Illinois, the daughter of Samuel and Pearl Leiderman. She married Israel (Izzy) Nadler on July 24, 1945 in the First Romanian Congregation synagogue in Chicago by Rabbi Tevele Cohen while Izzy was on a 34-day furlough from the U.S. Army. They had three children, Joel in 1947, Nina in 1958, and Toby in 1960. The family moved to southern California in 1969 but two years later Izzy died.

Goldie married Gilbert Katz in 1976 and in 1986 they retired to southern Florida. Goldie became involved in singing groups and played bridge and mah jong regularly. She and 10 of her singing group friends won the Florida lottery in 2010 and she was able to live without financial stress until she moved in with Nina and her family in March 2015.

Nina was Goldie’s primary caregiver until she died in 2017. Goldie had 3 children, 6 grandchildren and one great granddaughter. Goldie lived a long, full and happy life during her 94 years. We are very grateful that we had her for as long as we did.

Click here to view the slide show from her memorial.

What follows is a photo tribute to my mother’s life starting with her on her wedding day in 1945.

A gallery of moments in her life:

I intended to create this post during the year since Mom died. Instead I put it together in the last week so that I could post it on the one year anniversary of her passing. Some of the photos in the gallery here are photos from pages of a scrapbook that I created for her 80th birthday.  That’s why you see some embellishments and photos in colorful frames. I tried to include as much from her life as possible without it being overwhelming. It’s a pretty good overall summary of her life in photos.

Rest in peace my darling mother.  I miss you.

In closing, here’s a poem I came across years ago:

Your mother is always with you…
She’s the whisper of the leaves as you walk down the street,
She’s the cool hand on your brow when you’re not well.
Your mother lives inside your laughter,
And she’s crystallized in every tear drop.
She’s the place you came from, your first home,
And she’s the map you follow with every step you take.
She’s your first love and your first heartache,
And nothing on earth can separate you,
No amount of time…and no amount of distance.

~ Author Unknown

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under Writing

RIP Eddie – Best. Cat. Ever.

Eddie started life as we knew it in 2004 as M&M. The humane society gives names to all the cats and dogs available for adoption and so M&M was on the label of Eddie’s cage. I thought this was a strange name for a cat so he became Eddie to us after we brought him home. He was about 6-7 months old towards the end of 2004 and he was Miss M’s birthday present that year.

Eddie was such a docile and friendly sort. So much so, several neighbors really took a liking to him. He’d go to several houses in the neighborhood to visit all of his friends. One very amusing story happened just this past Christmas. It was another one of those bitter cold days that we get here in the frozen tundra of Minnesota but if the sun was shining, Eddie had to go outside. We thought that since it was so cold he’d be back soon. Hours went by and about 3:00 the doorbell rang. It was one of Eddie’s many friends in the neighborhood coming to deliver him back to us. She told us that he has a favorite spot in their house when the sun is shining. He had done this before where he’d disappear for hours and hours so now we felt better that he wasn’t stuck outside in the cold somewhere. He was being well taken care of down the street so we found out on Christmas day!

Eddie started losing weight just over two years ago. We had bloodwork done and our vet at the time suggested an ultrasound. The ultrasound was inconclusive but the bloodwork showed that his liver numbers were way out of whack. A biopsy of the liver was suggested but since Ed was already 12 at the time, I did not want to put him through any invasive tests. We gave him several different medications over the last two plus years but he continued to lose weight. We aren’t sure exactly what happened at the end. Either the liver issues finally got him or his heart gave out.

Throughout the last two plus years of tests and drugs Eddie kept his pleasant demeanor intact. He didn’t argue about the pills I had to shove down his throat carefully placed at the back of his throat so that he wouldn’t spit them out. He did argue about being brought to the vet but what cat doesn’t do that? He never acted sickly, he was just the same old Eddie he’d always been. He was just very thin.

We’ve always had two cats. When one would die, we’d go get another so there would always be two. But we are hoping to retire to southern Spain in about two years. The original plan was to take Fritz with us. We got Fritz as a kitten in 2010 shortly after our cat Clyde passed away. But poor little 6 year old Fritz met a horrible end to his life in 2016. We figured that Eddie probably wouldn’t be around in 2020 but we didn’t figure on Fritz dying so young :(

So, here we are catless for the first time since 1989 and it’s very odd. Miss M thinks we should get another cat, that the house needs a cat. She thinks that since we were planning on taking Fritz on our journey to Spain that we could take another cat. But honestly, the trip is going to be hard enough. I’m not sure I want to make it harder by taking a cat along. Someone in a diary of another blog that I follow suggested fostering. That does seem like a good option and I’m going to look into that, just not right now. Perhaps this summer or in the fall after Miss M starts college. I might need to nurse my empty nest syndrome by then. And a new cat, or cats, in the house might be just the thing.

Eddie made history by becoming our first pet to make it past 12 years of age. We didn’t know the exact date of his birth so we had picked March 1 to celebrate his birthday. And since he was just two weeks shy of being 14 on March 1 I decided that he was in fact 14 when he died last month.

Rest in peace old boy. You were the best cat ever. Thank you for nearly 14 years of fun.

Eddie boy, Fred Fred, Edward Bear, Edward, Ed E. Boy — some of the nicknames we gave him over the years.

I hope you will enjoy this gallery of my handsome cat Eddie.

 

10 Comments

Filed under Writing

My 5th blogoversary!!

Wow, really? Five years ago I started this blog and I’ve learned so much and I have new friends, all great things!   Once again I’m sharing some of my favorite posts from the last year followed by a photo gallery from these posts.

Last year was an up and down year but it started off great with our two week adventure in Spain the highlight in March.  I created no less than twelve posts about the trip.  If you missed any of them, not to worry as I’m relinking them here.  My first post was a quick peek into the several cities we visited.  We started our trip on the southern Mediterranean coast in the town where we plan to retire, Málaga.  One of our favorite spots, the alcazaba really shouldn’t be missed. If you happen to be in town on a Sunday, it is free.  But it is worth the very small admission price to see this fortress from so long ago.  Beautiful architecture and views of the city and the sea. We spent an afternoon touring urban art with a fellow blogger and had a nice meal at El Pimpi too.  And one last one about Málaga with other things that we did and saw.

One post from our trip to Spain was completely devoted to food.  Check it out, I bet you get hungry!  We had one day trip from Málaga and visited the small town of Córdoba which is only an hour train ride.  We enjoyed touring the mezquita, the sinagoga and even El Corte Inglés.  We stopped into Spain’s largest department store on our walk back to the train station that afternoon.  We had some time to kill so looked around a little before catching our train back to Málaga. I love Córdoba and can’t wait to go back.

From Málaga we headed north to another of my favorite cities: Madrid, where I spent my junior year of college.  It holds a special place in my heart due to that year abroad.  I fell in love with Spain then and knew I had to return. I have only one post for Madrid but it also appears in the food post, referenced in the previous paragraph.  We took another day trip, this time from Madrid to Toledo.  I spent many a weekend in Toledo while living in Madrid all those years ago. This town is also special to me, many happy memories, including the trip we took that Friday in March 2016.  Come have a look at La Judería and one other post I created with other things we did and saw.  It’s a short 30 minute ride by train from Madrid and well worth a day trip.

The last 4 days of the trip were spent in Barcelona.  We seem to always cut Barcelona too short.  I again felt that we didn’t have enough time to see all that I had hoped to see.  But the weather had something to do with that too this time.  We did have a great time in a fabulous city that I can’t wait to see again.  I had posts about Sagrada Familia, the Palau de la Música Catalana and one other that includes other things that we did and saw.  The Palau was another highlight of this trip. We only saw the outside in 2010 and I was determined to see that famous, gorgeous dome.  If you only look at one Barcelona post, please make it that one. I can almost guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

The year had much sadness with my beloved and spunky cat Fritz dying unexpectedly then two months later my brother died.  I’d rather not dwell on the sadness in this post.  I’m still dealing with both losses.  Grief takes a while to work through.  Click on the links for more information and get the kleenex box.

It turns out that I did a lot of travelling last year.  I already mentioned our trip to Spain in March. In April I went to the D.C. area for my nephew’s wedding.  I also got to go to D.C. with my daughter, my sister and my nephew. We had a wonderful, quickie trip and saw many things.  What a great day that was!  I was so happy to travel to northern California for my brother’s wedding over Labor Day weekend.  It was a perfect day and everyone had a marvelous time and love was in the air!  We also got to tour Benziger Winery which is 30 minutes away the day after the wedding.  Another perfect day spent with family in a most beautiful setting.  One more post about another quick visit, this time to San Francisco, the city by the bay.  It is as beautiful as the photos you’ve seen. We were lucky to have another warm, sunny day to walk around Fisherman’s wharf and take selfies in front of the Golden Gate Bridge. We had such fun that weekend. Memories that will last a lifetime.

As likely most of you know, we never miss the fair.  And I never miss the chance to create a post about our visit.  Such fun!!  One other, sort of travel related post was about our visit to the now closed Bell Museum at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, the east bank campus.  Their new building on the St. Paul campus is under construction and will open in 2018.  What a fascinating and educational place!! I’m looking forward to visiting the new museum.

I did only a couple of restaurant reviews.  I see that department is a bit lacking. I will have to remedy that and go out to eat more often this year.  Ha ha!  I wrote another review of Hell’s Kitchen, always a great meal and a good time.  This post includes photos of the famous Schmitt music mural which is right across the street from the restaurant.  One other review was of Muffuletta, a new place for us. It’s been there for a while and we finally tried it and we give it high marks.  I can’t wait to go sit on their patio this summer.

Finally, a review of the seasons is in order.  I love taking photos of the seasons and last year’s autumn colors were especially brilliant I thought.  Take a look at this post and you’ll see what I mean.  I created a spring flowers and plants as well as a summer blooms post.  I had great fun photographing the four gardens that I got to tour last summer.  And one last post from the cabin from last summer.

Thanks for coming along for the ride and here’s to another year of blogging!  I hope you’ll enjoy a gallery of just a handful of last year’s photos.

 

 

11 Comments

Filed under Writing

Rest in peace my brother

I’ve had a heck of a year!!  Two weeks after my adorable cat Fritz died I headed west to attend the wedding of my brother with his long-time companion (22 years!).  It was a fabulous weekend, the weather was perfect and everyone was so happy.  Then tragically my brother passed away on October 14th.  He learned that he had pancreatic cancer in March. He had surgery to remove the tumor and then he was supposed to start chemo. That kept getting postponed as he had one setback after another.  He was to start again the day after we all left northern California, 9/6.  I believe he had a mini-stroke and just went downhill after that.  My sister and I attended his memorial service the weekend before Thanksgiving.  We both talked about our brother and then asked if anyone else wanted to say a few words.  Our cousin from Chicago spoke about his early years with our brother. They were five months apart and spent their first eleven years together. Then Aunt Lilah, my father’s sister, told a few tales about him too.  It was a nice weekend and there were close to 70 people at his memorial and that was nice to see.

Below is what I spoke about my brother.  And below that are a few photos.

I’m Joel’s younger sister and we’re 13 years apart so we didn’t really know each other that well but he was always there for me and I can’t believe that he’s gone. I had a difficult time when David Bowie died, one, because it was such a shock and two, because, well, there was always David Bowie!! As far back as I can remember, there was always David Bowie so it really hurt to learn that Bowie was gone. And before Bowie, there was always my brother and now they’re both gone. They were the same age too. But I want to focus on the fact that Joel was always there for me, beginning with our father’s death when I was 11. I have a vivid memory of us at the funeral and Joel put his arm around me to comfort me. Then when our father’s dog needed to be put down I called my brother because that dog was the last tangible thing that I had of my father. And I just couldn’t bear to do that task so Joel did that for me. He was there when I bought my first car and he was there for my high school and college graduations. He was there at the airport when I left for a year of study in Spain. I’m not sure if he knew how much I appreciated him always being there but I did tell him how much I loved that he gave me away at my wedding. He was the perfect choice. And because of our age difference you can hear someone on my wedding video saying “that must be Mr. Nadler”. Well, they were right but I think they thought he was my father.

I’m still not quite over David Bowie’s death and I know it will take me a while to process that my brother is no longer here. But he lived a good life and got married to the love of his life just over two months ago. I was so happy and grateful to be able to attend the wedding to see him one last time. I know that he died happy and he was so loved. And really, that’s all any of us can hope for. Well done my dear brother. I love you and I miss you. Rest in peace.

While in northern California for my brother’s wedding we visited a vineyard. Look for a future post about that. Here’s a sneak preview and one from his wedding in September:

13 Comments

Filed under Writing

Electoral college electors: Vote your conscience!!

This is not a political blog but I feel this is serious enough to create a political post on my blog, and this would be perhaps the second time I’ve done this.  I’m going out on a limb in an attempt to save my country, my world and this is likely a long shot but I have to try! Yes, America apparently voted in the chump but did you know that doesn’t become official until the electors cast their votes on December 19?  I’m not necessarily hoping that they’ll vote Hillary in, though that would be nice because I know in my heart of hearts that she actually did win.  I believe there was enough “hanky panky” that went on and that this election was stolen, just like in 2000 and 2004.  But that’s a story for another day and plenty has been written on this subject.  It is my hope that there will be enough petitions and voices that when the electors vote on December 19 the chump is ousted from the most important position in the world.  HE HAS NO BUSINESS IN THAT ROLE!!! Every day since the election he has proved it even more.  For those of us paying attention, he indeed showed it throughout his campaign.

A little education on what the electoral college is can be found here.  What I’d like to point out is that the founders of the United States created a “fail safe” in the constitution for exactly the situation that we in the U.S. find ourselves in.  Robert Reich, via Michael Signer at this link (updated 11/29/16), perfectly explains each point and why the electors should vote their conscience instead of the way the states voted.  Here is his explanation:

Should conscientious electors decide against Donald Trump when they turn in their ballots December 19th? Michael Signer (below) has a credible argument they should. Constitutional history makes clear that the founders had three main purposes in designing the Electoral College.

1. Stop a demagogue from becoming president. At the Constitutional Convention, arguing in support of the Electoral College, Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts said he was “against a popular election” for president because the people would be “misled by a few designing men.” In Federalist No. 68, Alexander Hamilton wrote that the electors would prevent those with “Talents for low intrigue, and the little arts of popularity” from becoming president. They would also stop anyone who would “convulse the community with any extraordinary or violent movements.”

Check one against Trump.

2. Stop foreign interference in an election. The framers were extremely concerned about infiltration by rivals including Great Britain. In Federalist No. 68, Hamilton wrote that one major purpose of the Electoral College was to stop the “desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils.” He said that the college would “Guard against all danger of this sort … with the most provident and judicious attention” from the electors.

Check two against Trump. There’s incontrovertible evidence Russia interfered in the campaign by hacking the email accounts of top Democratic officials and cooperating with WikiLeaks’ parallel campaign to undermine Hillary Clinton campaign. Meanwhile, Trump has business entanglements in Russia and other foreign countries, the extent to which are unknown because Trump has not released his tax returns.

3. Prevent poor administration of government. In Federalist No. 68. Hamilton wrote that “the true test of a good government is its aptitude and tendency to produce a good administration,” and for that reason, he said, the electors should be “able to estimate the share which the executive in every government must necessarily have in its good or ill administration.”

Check three against Trump, who has no government experience and whose character and temperament – as revealed both from his personal history and his campaign – are arguably inconsistent with good government.

4. One additional factor: Hillary Clinton is on track to win the popular vote by over 2.3 million votes — nearly 5 times Al Gore’s narrow margin over George W. Bush in 2000.

Modern-day conservatives favor so-called “originalist” understandings of the Constitution, looking to history and to the original texts of our founding documents for guidance. On this basis, electors have every ground for refusing to make Donald Trump president of the United States.

Indeed, there has been much written on this subject as well.  Just googling this morning I found this:

This presidential elector will vote her conscience on December 19

Updating to add this: Why I will not cast my electoral vote for Donald Trump.

From that article: If no candidate gets to 270 Electoral College votes, then the decision will go to the House of Representatives, as it has happened twice in our nation’s history.  And this is ultimately what I’m hoping for. For if the electors choose Hillary, even though I know that she actually did win this contest, I am quite certain there would be violence and likely people would die.  That is the only reason I am against this scenario.

There is also Bret Chiafalo who narrates this video which describes the electoral college and what those electors can do to save our country and the world from this demagogue.

Other writings on this subject include Time’s piece: The electoral college was created to stop demagogues like Trump.  And this one from The Atlantic: The electoral college was meant to stop men like Trump from becoming president.  And the Huffington Post: The electoral college was designed to prevent Trump. You can make this happen.  This one suggests that we actually write the electors and ask them not to vote for Trump. I prefer to remain anonymous so I signed a petition or two.  Change.org has one here.  And evidently this petition is the largest in change.org’s history!!

Editing to add this interesting story of a 19 year old elector: Teen becomes 7th faithless elector to protest Trump as president-elect.

Please sign the petition and share.  There is too much at stake!!  This American and the world will thank you.

8 Comments

Filed under Writing

Post election thoughts

Here we are America three days after the most shocking and disheartening election of my life.  I’m starting to accept that it’s a new world order now.  At first I thought I would not pay as close attention any more but I can see that isn’t going to happen.  The husband turned me into a political junkie over the 28 years that we’ve been together and we enjoy seeing who has heard the news first about whatever is the story of the day.  I still need to pay attention but I’m not going to obsess about it any longer.  I can see what it’s done to me in the past year.  But truth be told, I have had many things “thrown at me” over the last several months(my cat died unexpectedly and horribly and then my brother died) so it’s hard to say that my nervous habits, lack of sleep and tension in my neck and upper back were caused solely by this election.

I am very curious how this new presidency is going to turn out.  Since we couldn’t believe anything that Trump said during his campaign, saying one thing one day and the complete opposite the next day, it’s hard to determine which campaign promises he will keep.  Indeed, already I’m reading that he might not actually repeal Obamacare and instead amend it.  He said that he began thinking this way after his meeting with Obama this week.  This should be interesting since the leaders of the House and Senate have been hell bent on repealing this much needed health insurance law from the get-go.  I am curious how the president elect is going to get along with his republican congress.  Time will tell.

Last night I went to my daughter’s fall concert and I was treated to some lovely and soothing music.  And I began thinking, gosh, I’m going to spend more time doing things like this over the next several years.  I’m going to spend more time reading, blogging, visiting museums and doing other things that I enjoy.  Garrison Keillor’s piece prompted these thoughts. You can read that here if you like. We need to focus on how to get Miss M to college as well as plan for our retirement to southern Spain.  On that point there was another prediction that did not occur.  Tuesday night when it started to look like Hillary was going to lose the Dow futures dropped several hundred points.  Then magically the market did not crash!!  I guess investors were calmed by Trump’s speech? We met with our financial advisor last night as it was time for our semi-annual meeting.  And, so far, knock on wood, our investments are holding.  I was so sure that if Trump won that the market would crash, my funds would disappear and I would never be able to retire.  So I’m going to go forward and assume that I will actually be able to move to Spain.  Time to start planning!!

We went to one of our regular spots for dinner tonight and sat at the bar, a favorite as the bar tenders know us and it’s so comfy.  Hubby started talking about Veteran’s day and how it started out as Armistice day and the woman next to him asked if he was a veteran.  Uh, no, it’s just because it’s Veteran’s day, he told her.  And he volunteered his story about his father being stationed at Guam during WWII and I told the story of my father who landed on Utah Beach on D Day.  She was with her husband and they both shared the stories of their fathers in the military. We all toasted to Veteran’s day and shared a bit of humanity.  A few minutes later one of them asked what we thought about the election.  We were all on the same side and discussed a few things.  One of my thoughts today had to do with the low turnout this year.  And I shared that and said that if it gets as bad as we fear, perhaps it will startle those that didn’t vote to the point that they do vote in the next election.  We all hoped that this will happen. It felt great to share some conversation with like-minded people in our own community.

Yes, there are scary things going on out there but this encounter with two strangers, our neighbors who eat at our neighborhood restaurant, renewed my hope in humanity.  We do need to pay attention to what’s going on in Washington but I also think it’s a good idea to live your life, do the things that you enjoy, talk to your fellow citizens.  I intend to focus on my own life and hope to God we don’t have a stock market crash before I can fulfill my dream of retiring to Spain.  Coming soon are some more travel-related posts.  I hope you will come back for them :) Meanwhile, enjoy a nice photo:

13 Comments

Filed under Writing

Rest in peace my darling Fritz

I am grieving today and for me, the best way to deal with it is to get support.  Already so many friends and family have commented on my facebook posts.  What I’d like to do here is to post a gallery of photos of my darling cat who passed away overnight last night.

We adopted Fritz about a week or so after our last cat Clyde passed away from cancer in early 2010.  Fritz was a rambunctious little boy, always playful, cuddly and lovable.  He was a great hunter and would spend entire nights outside from spring through fall.  He almost always came back.  Once he was gone for 48 hours worrying all of us!!  But he returned and looked a bit disheveled and we believe he got in a tussle with a fox that had been seen roaming the neighborhood.  In fact, my neighbor saw the fox chase poor little Fritz up a tree! But Fritz got away from the fox! I always assumed that Fritz would meet his end out there in the “hunting grounds”.  Indeed, just this year he was treated for not one, but two abscesses!  Instead he met his end in a bizarre fashion, something I will never forget.

I woke up around 3:00 a.m. because of the rain and immediately went to get Fritz inside.  But hubby had already let him in and I found him under the dining room table.  He wasn’t able to move his back legs at all and was yelling out in pain!  Horrified I found the number to the University of Minnesota’s 24/7 vet clinic and we went right then, about 3:30 this morning. The vet on duty couldn’t have been more compassionate and helpful but she had no good news for us.  She asked if he had a heart murmur and we had been told that in the past but it wasn’t always heard and no other vet seemed alarmed by it.  She told us that he very likely had a condition called Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and this likely caused a blood clot to lodge at the base of his spine paralyzing his back end. She told us the prognosis was not good and told us our options, none of them good ones.  While we were there Fritz continued to go downhill so we did the humane thing and put him down.  The jury’s still out on whether it’s easier when pets go quickly or when you try to treat them and they die within a year.  It’s all hard no matter how you slice it.

I’m thankful for many things today.  The wonderful and compassionate vet that helped us through a difficult night.  That the U of MN has a 24 hour clinic.  That this didn’t happen to him while he was out on a hunting mission which means we may not have found him.  That it didn’t happen while we were in Spain earlier this year or at the cabin this summer.  Most of all I am thankful for the 6 plus years we had with our darling Fritz.  Rest in peace my dear boy.  You are out of pain now.

 

18 Comments

Filed under Writing