In Memory: Pepper

In Memory: Pepper

pepperIt has taken me two weeks to get the emotional strength to write this post.  I figured I had cried myself dry and I knew that putting this down on “paper” would reopen the wounds.  But it had to happen.

Today is the day.

Pepper was my office-mate for 2.5 years, which was almost exactly 2.5 years longer than she was “supposed to live.“  I won’t recount Pepper’s miraculous story, since it’s in an earlier post.

Her Classic Position

Pepper continued to thrive until about eight weeks ago, when she started losing weight steadily.  Fearing the worst, we had an ultrasound done and discovered that she had developed a third kind of cancer.  There was nothing to do.  I was heartbroken and expected her to leave me at any moment.

Once again, however, Pepper refused to listen to the medical community and she did amazingly well for six weeks.  Admittedly, she slowed down and spent less time on my desk.  But she still enjoyed human interaction and food (her two favorite hobbies :-).

Those weeks were very difficult for me, as I watched her body wasting away and her immune system become compromised.  The latter caused some dormant eye issues to flare up and her eyes began to develop lesions and mucous.  It was so incredibly painful, yet intimate, as I tended to her medications, cleaned her eyes and made sure she was comfortable.  Pepper had been an amazingly faithful office-mate and I was happy to be able to return the favor in her time of need.

Pepper Blissed Out

Finally the day came when Pepper would not eat and was non-reactive to human attention, even mine.  I would never be ready for Pepper to leave … but I also knew that she was ready.  She went very gently in my arms, surrounded by the love of many other staff.

It is still hard to believe that she is no longer with me physically.  I lost a dear friend and a great love.  We cared for each other for those 2.5 years.  I wouldn’t change a thing.

Rest in peace, baby girl.  I will see you again.

8 thoughts on “In Memory: Pepper

  1. Like Erin before her, I always considered Pepper to be one of Tabby’s Place most familiar faces. I will miss seeing her on my visits. But I know Pepper is now purring around with the other kitties who have crossed the bridge as well, and one day we’ll all meet up again for good.

  2. I believe that Pepper and all the other beautiful “fur-souls” who have crossed over the Rainbow Bridge are greeted by Tabby (for whom this beautiful, loving sanctuary is named for) so they can share stories of their love for all those at Tabby’s Place who have taken care of them and loved them so dearly. We will all be together one day but rest knowing that when they cross over, they are loved equally as strong by Tabby.

  3. I am so sorry for your loss, Jonathan. Pepper was a really sweet girl. i miss seeing her when I pass by your office. I know she appreciated the love and care you gave her. Rest in peace, lovely kitty.

  4. 🙁
    Great tears of sadness today for sweet Pepper and everyone who loves her and misses her. For some reason the last time I was there I didn’t check in on Pepper, I always did but not on that day. Somehow maybe I knew she wasn’t there in body anymore. I know her spirit will always be there though, hanging around spreading love around Jonathan’s office.

  5. Jonathan and All –

    I am so glad that I chose today to break in my new Tabby’s Place t-shirt (I will explain below).

    I should know better than to read my favorite blog post when it begins, “In Memory of…” while I am in a public place (today it was Starbucks). It is this shirt that saved me from being identified as “one of those crazy people,” blubbering into my frappachino, in favor of a much better “one of those crazy CAT people” designation.

    I believe that Pepper knew that she needed to relinquish her hold on “he of the very big heart” (as my Mom would say) to gave others a chance to be a co-exec at Tabby’s.

    It is wrenching to survive these losses, but they remind us that life is precious and that we can never forget this fact. One of my favorite quotes, from the movie “Contact”:

    ” I… had an experience. I can’t prove it, I can’t even explain it, but everything that I know as a human being, everything that I am tells me that it was real. I was given something wonderful, something that changed me forever. A vision of the universe, that tells us undeniably, how tiny, and insignificant and how… rare, and precious we all are! A vision that tells us that we belong to something that is greater than ourselves, that we are not, that none of us are alone.” (Ellie Arroway, upon her return from a journey through an Einstein-Rosen Bridge)

  6. The pain of losing one we love so much is so great — but it truly is worth it when we balance it against the immeasurable love we have received. As stated above, Jonathan, Pepper is with Tabby (and so many others), sharing stories and comparing notes and waiting for the day when we will all be reunited. Rest in peace, sweet Pepper.

  7. Rest in peace Pepper! Like Marie said, she’s with Tabby and the rest of our fur friends who have crossed the bridge. Smile down on Jonathan and the rest of us and comfort us in our dreams, until we meet again…

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