Last week I became aware that I was facing some loss and grief in this time of anticipation. As I was walking back to the gym locker room after my swim with Baby one morning, I was saying to him/her that we didn’t have too many swims like this left (Baby is due to arrive sometime in the next 5 weeks for certain). While I’m definitely excited about bringing Baby to the pool to float on his/her own, I will miss hopping into the pool with my big belly — Baby safely inside — and swimming laps with my little one.
Coming right on the heels of this realization that I was losing somethings, our second-oldest kitty (age 15), Attabi, got very ill (from long-standing kidney disease). Though we hoped his weekend stay with the vet had given him a few more weeks or months of life in this form, that was not to be. Tuesday evening, after lying snuggled between Bruce and me on our bed being petted and loved, we took him to the vet and held him as the vet gave him the shot to stop his heart. We definitely were not ready for this change in our lives, yet Attabi came to both of us in our dreams that same night and showed us he was fine — vital, happy, and still with us in spirit. Additionally, Bruce had the inkling that Attabi’s spirit wanted us to be able to focus our care-taking energy on the new life coming into our family rather than on the life of his physical self which would have demanded much more time to keep him alive.
So I’m touched by the profound reminders that change — even the kind that we relish and fervently anticipate — is accompanied by loss — some of which may fill us with grief. Of course, I knew this was true long before last week, yet realizing it again has helped me to savor these present moments all the more, knowing that they are to be replaced before too long. I know I’m deeply grateful that I took off work on Tuesday so that I could spend Attabi’s final day with him. Thank you for 15 wonderful years, little Lobster!
I hope this lesson about Life’s ephemeral nature will be one I remember frequently as a parent (If I forget, will you remind me?).
“I need neither future nor past, but to learn to take today not too fast.”~Jeb Dickerson