People may have told you that you’re too old to learn the accordion.
People may have pooh-poohed your plans to tame an old feral cat.
“It’s too late,” people say. “That ship has sailed,” people say.
People say a lot of things.
The Tabby’s Place cats say, “Bollocks.”
And also, “Your ship will sit in the harbor until your time comes. And, baby, it’s coming.”
No cats say such things louder than Henrietta.
This may not be immediately apparent. “Loud” is not the first word folks bellow upon meeting our old broad. “Nervous,” perhaps. “Shy.” “Quiet.” “Suspicious.”
But folks talk a lot of what professionals call “smack.”
Consider our Henrietta — “Hen” to her friends. She may look tortie-ie, but that’s just because her black fur is scattered with squashes of wet food and miscellaneous squishy substances.
The prime of Miss Henrietta Rosenberg was not spent in a sea of clover. Hen did not have a penthouse in Manhattan and a closet full of high-end shoes. Hers was not the life of a fashion blog.
By the time Hen came to our attention, she seemed much older than her ten years. Packed into a sardine-can of a hoarding case; wracked with ringworm; and gloopy-eyed with herpes and heart-heaviness, Henrietta looked as though she’d seen many, many ships sail away.
But it wasn’t too late.
It also wasn’t over, that storm of skyscraper waves. Before she finished her record-long stint in our Ringworm quarantine, Henrietta was diagnosed with hepatic (that is, liver) lymphoma.
Does that sound bad? Does that sound worse than a Celine Dion cover of the Wu-Tang Clan? Then you’re hearing right.
But it wasn’t too late.
Through time and tenacity and the tender mercies of God, ringworm departed.
Cancer was cancelled.
Well, kind of: at this point, Hen’s diagnosis wobbles between “severe liver inflammation” and “still, possibly, hepatic lymphoma.” Quite honestly, even Dr. Fantastic isn’t certain. For now, a cocktail of medications and ’round-the-clock special squishy meals is manifesting in miracles.
Henrietta ain’t got time for cancer. She. Is. Thriving. Adoption Room #3, that nest of oldest female felines, is hugging her tight.
She’s also letting us love her, little by little, big green eyes taking in a life that’s still new.
She’s not too old to be young again.
Late have we loved you, Henrietta! We marvel at the new beginning that comes right on time.
Photo credits from de top: Jess B, AT, Jess B.