Guest post: A letter from Rose

Guest post: A letter from Rose

Rose and Ilene selfie.

Beloved Tabby’s Place family,

Even in a week of cosmic sorrow, nothing compares to this goodbye. Rose was, is, and will ever be the blooming heart of Tabby’s Place. Our garden is ragged with grief today.

To honor all that Rose means to us, we’ll be sending her off in two parts. We begin with this love letter from Rose herself, written with a bit of help from Ilene. Who is Ilene, you ask? Rose would answer: the very face of love. Over a decade, they shared a bond that now stretches into eternity and beyond.

Thank you for loving Rose with us, dearest hearts. XO, AT

A Letter From Rose

My Dearest Friends,

Aunt Daisy’s advice was to always give a proper “Southern belle goodbye” when heading on a long journey.

Rose begins life at Tabby’s Place!

My last formal goodbye to my family was in 2013, when I was first rescued, after being hit by a car and scheduled for euthanasia. A wonderful cat rescue drove me from Virginia to Tabby’s Place to begin my amazing new life.

But today is the hardest goodbye of all.

Truly, this is not a goodbye, my sweet friends, but a chance for me to tell you how much I love you.  You are my family, and I am grateful for having you in my heart for so many years.

Valentine photo shoot.

Y’all know that I was gifted with many medical challenges throughout my short life.  Lordy, Rose does not back down from a challenge!

Just a few weeks ago, my correspondent and I had our Valentine’s Day photo shoot in the lobby.  We had so much fun and laughed at the silly props.  I did not imagine that, just a few short weeks later, instead of chasing my correspondent around the lobby as she carried 3 food trays, I would be receiving my angel wings.

In 2018, I battled my first brain infection.  Up until then, my only worries had been incontinence and the occasional urinary tract infection.  But the vet team at Tabby’s Place brought me to an amazing and compassionate neurologist.  I knew that the odds were against me, but I do not give up!

While I recovered, my correspondent made a “Rose picnic” for me every day in the Tabby’s Place hospital, complete with catnip bananas, crinkle toys, and my favorite foods (tuna, boiled chicken, and lickable treats).  We all chanted, “be like Rose.”

The past four years have been an amazing second chance at life.

Rose earns her certification as a therapy cat.

I recovered from my first illness and moved into the lobby.  Lobby living was the best, because I met so many wonderful people.  I became a certified therapy cat and participated in the “Aged to Purrfection” program.  I love me some sweet seniors!

Never forget, the glass is more than half full of sweet tea, and best served with a piece of pecan pie!  Life really is a sweet gift, and every day we need to live it to the fullest and spread kindness.

This past August, I was not feeling myself, and the vet team brought me back to my neurologist.  We received the dreaded news that the brain infection was back with a vengeance, and I also had several lesions on my lower spine.

In typical Rose fashion, I fought for my life, and no matter how terrible I felt, I took in the joy at Tabby’s Place and gave lots of love every, minute of every day.  I guess I really am a black and white furry miracle kitty, because an ordinary cat could not battle these medical demons.  As y’all know, I am no ordinary cat!

Last week, I briefly felt a bit better, and my correspondent sat with me every afternoon.  She sang, “Rose has 4 Toes,” and brought me every food treat imaginable.  Yes, I would have preferred to stay with you many more years, but this was not to be.  My body became so tired from fighting and needed to rest.

In the arms of the vet team and my correspondent, I received love and kisses, and I was able to shut my eyes, and peacefully received my angel wings.

Teaching the littles how to be a proper southern belle.

When you think of me, please picture me running through the lobby chasing food servers; or spending the day in solarium A, welcoming visitors; or holding my catnip banana as I sleep, tearing off my diaper with my teeth; or maybe taking a long stroller ride (looking at the leaves and flowers).

Remember me proudly receiving my “certified therapy certificate” and pink scarf, watching me climb on the reception desk, helping inventory donations, sneaking into the laundry room and flying across the bottom shelf.

And, perhaps most importantly, think of me sitting peacefully with my correspondent every month, as we wrote my update together, with love for you.

Rose and Ilene selfie.

Please keep me in your heart. You will be in my heart always.

Sending chocolate covered cherry whisker kisses!  Happy Valentine’s Day, my love!

Love, your forever Valentine,

(with help from Rose’s angel, Ilene)


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