It has been said that grief is the good-bye you don't want to say. Last evening, my beloved cat came home with a huge hunk chewed out of his lower left quadrant. I knew immediately there was nothing to be done. Because of shock, he wasn't in any pain. So we let him lie on his favorite Persian rug. We scratched the back of his neck and the side of his ears, and told him we loved him. And we also told him it was okay to go, that he had done his job well. During the night, each of us independently left our bed and went to scratch him. He moved from spot to spot during the night. By this morning when I awoke, he was gone. He was lying peacefully and still.
This afternoon we will bury him in the apricot orchard, next to Brian, who was my familiar and whose loss still makes me cry. We sometimes call our orchard the Apricat orchard. Stretch will be buried carefully and deeply, under a mound of rocks beneath the soil so that whatever got him in life can't disturb him in his long sleep.
It strikes me that with alopcia, some of us face the same type of grief, not wanting to say good-bye to our hair. I have only been on Alopecia World a short while, but it seems as if the people who are coping the best are the ones who just shave their heads, say good-bye all at once, and get on with life. This has given me a lot to think about.
Anyway, for today, it's just, "Good-bye, Stretch. You were a good friend and a fabulous cat. You were loved and appreciated. I'll miss you."