Not a Bad Deal on a Pre-owned Cat

Namir

Namir

I say farewell to a dear friend, my Namir, who was a dear companion and a great inspiration. The art in the header is actually a painting of Namir, and my avatar for Portraits of Animals is Namir’s face from this painting.

I have written a remembrance of him on my website, and invite you to read it and enjoy the art and photos.

It’s rather long, but I write this memory of a remarkable cat because I want others to remember him, still others to know him, and to share some of the more challenging things about living with a cat who has several unpredictable and life-threatening conditions, the time, the finances, the decisions, those last moments, the impact on the rest of my household of cats, and, of course, what a creative inspiration he was for me as a painter and writer and photographer, even as a designer of stylish crochet items.

And woven through Namir’s chronic long-term conditions has been the pattern of my household growing older, developing an end-of-life illness and then each is gone. For about five years I’ve been extremely vigilant, observing appetites, checking respiration rates, taking temperatures, administering sub-Q fluids, giving medications and whatever supportive care was necessary to keep everyone comfortable, often to several cats at one time, as I lost four in one year. Losing Namir is, in a way, the ends of that cycle finally meeting. Loss is only an end if a lesson in the loss goes unlearned, so this cycle has fine tuned my ability to care for all my cats because I have learned many lessons.

Professionally, I have been able to immediately put these lessons into design work which I coincidentally began in April and May. The cremation service I use is also one of my customers for design and photography, and we’ve been redesigning her logo and building up her website to include much more information about her services. Through a chain of connections I was able to illustrate the cover and booklet interior for a pet loss CD, this in turn leading me to work on my long-term idea of sympathy cards for the loss of your animal companion. Reciprocally, working on these projects when I knew I would soon lose Namir gave me great comfort in the last two months.

And I hope to share my experiences for the sake of anything that anyone else might gain from them in lessons or comfort, technical information even, though I’ve kept everything pretty general, and not named any persons or businesses.

Please visit my website and read about Namir.


11 Comments on “Not a Bad Deal on a Pre-owned Cat”

  1. […] In addition, my line of Animal Sympathy Cards grew from my own grief after the loss of several of my household in a short time, ending with Namir. […]

  2. […] In addition, my line of Animal Sympathy Cards grew from my own grief after the loss of several of my household in a short time, ending with Namir. […]

  3. […] we didn’t have much time left. I wanted to work on the painting when he was still with me. He died in July 2009, and again I left it where it had been at that […]

  4. […] may have read my articles about Namir and his four-year struggle with, and ultimate death from, HCM in July 2009. Cats deal with illness […]

  5. […] and Moses for teaching me to understand and trust their physical and emotional strength. And to Namir for teaching me to trust him to know when this time was the last time, and he was ready for the […]

  6. […] of you have read my articles about Namir and his four-year struggle with, and ultimate death from, HCM in July 2009. Cats deal with illness […]

  7. […] enough, I began the project just as I knew I would soon lose my Namir after four years of working with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) and congestive heart failure […]

  8. […] enough, I began the project just as I knew I would soon lose my Namir after four years of working with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) and congestive heart failure […]

  9. animalartist says:

    Sally~writing it is part of my therapy, sharing it with people like you is the other part. I’m so glad that the story of Namir’s and my journey brings you solace; I can know that his gentle, loving soul continues to do its work, and I’m sure he knows that, too. They inspire everything I do. The next blog entry, “Perhaps the Storm is Over”, encapsulates several years and several losses, but is not sad. Thanks.

  10. Sally Cameron says:

    I can’t tell you how much your story of Namir’s life (and death) meant to me. I faced a similar situation recently and wish I had your writing skills! Thank you very much for sharing this with us all.
    Your artwork is gorgeous.

  11. Judi says:

    I just love visiting your website. The pictures are marvelous and the stories heartwarming.


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