Simone – In Memory
I knew when I saw the photos of a severely frostbitten and emaciated domestic cat Simone, that saving her would be extremely difficult. Even so, we spent three days doing everything we could to help her fight the infection, gain weight and ensured pain medication made her comfortable.
This little girl won her way into our hearts from the moment we met her. With all she had been through, and how much she was suffering, she was still seeking human attention, rolling on her back purring and welcoming belly rubs.
Once our vet team was able to evaluate her, it was clear the damage was too extreme and infection was taking over her body quickly. We had scheduled a surgical consult to determine if removing her infected front paws would eliminate the massive infection. The recommendation confirmed what our vet team had recommended, it was time to say goodbye.
Her heart was failing, and the damage was even more extensive than first thought. Even if she could survive, she would’ve needed a 4-limb amputation.
Her body had been through enough. It was time to let her go. We only had her 3 days, but the love we all gave her filled a lifetime. And there is peace in knowing that she left this world surrounded by love.
But this loss seemed unbearable to me at first. It wasn’t completely unexpected, but it was overwhelming. With 25 years in this industry, I knew there was more to my emotion than just Simone’s passing.
It was a cyclone of emotions from past losses, recent stresses and the heartbreak of imagining what Simone had gone through prior to being found.
I have these moments more frequently than I did in the early years. As hard as the emotional tsunami is, it is cathartic in a way. Grief isn’t linear. And I had handled the recent losses of Logan, Katniss and Cinders pretty pragmatically, or so I thought.
Until it all came in at once. I couldn’t help but also think of little Rocket and some of the others who came to us in such critical condition, and left us so soon.
I knew I needed to decompress and step away for a day or so to feel the emotion, investigate what else would surface and accept that I am not superwoman. The work we do is real, the losses are devastating and the list of other animals we are working on helping can feel drowning…at least in that moment.
With some down time, good friends, more crying and self-reflection, I am in a much better place. I had to let those emotions come to the surface so that I could begin to heal again.
I am so thankful for our vet team and staff who did everything they could to help Simone, but also knew when it was time to let her go. And not just her, but every resident that comes through our doors.
And I want to thank all of you for loving her just as quickly and deeply as we did. I know you grieve alongside us.
Simone, thank you for reminding us of the power of love! We often need the reminder of just how impactful and uniting it is.