Goodbye, My Friend

December 31st, 2017



As I mentioned in the previous post, I awoke this morning to see my cat, Moon, in respitory distress  on the bathroom floor. I took him to the hospital where he passed peacefully. I played Rainbow Connection, a song we used to dance to, and whispered in his ear that he’d saved me and that I would never forget him. As I’d anticipated, the pain is excruciating.

This afternoon, after I’d announced Moon’s passing on Instagram, a friend reached out and said that he’d read a book called “Hero of a Thousand Faces” by Joseph Campell. The premise of the book is that people come into our lives and accompany us on a journey, then leave us when they feel we’ve learned what we needed to learn to begin the next stage of the journey.

I bought Moon on January 1, 2002. He left me on December 31st, 2017. That’s not a coincidence. Nor is it a coincidence that I’d just written a post yesterday talking about this next phase of my life. Several times over the last few months I’d mentioned to friends  that I felt a change coming and that 2018 was going to be the year of something great. Maybe that’s why today was the day I said goodbye to Moon. Maybe he felt as though he’d taught me all he needed to in order for me to move on to the next journey. Just the other night, I’d scooped him up and placed him next to me in bed. As I rubbed his back, I told him I wasn’t ready for him to leave me. His head on my forearm, he looked up at me with those beautiful blue eyes, then reached out and let his paw rest on my shoulder.

You’re ready, my friend. 

When he was diagnosed hyperthyroid last spring, I knew the end was coming. Out of all the losses I’ve suffered these past five years, this one was the one I dreaded the most. But instead of shutting down, I loved him harder. Knowing I was going to have to say good-bye, I pushed through the fear and made every day with him count. That’s what he taught me: to push through it, be present, love fiercely, no matter how scary or painful saying good-bye might be.

Maybe that’s been my block all along. Maybe that’s my new journey. I just wish I could have taken him with me.

Moon, you were my best friend. You saw me through the darkness and let me know I mattered every day. I will love you forever.

Good-bye, my friend.

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19 Responses to “Goodbye, My Friend”

  1. fuzzilla Says:

    I’m so sorry. What a beautiful kitty. Pets are such a great source of unconditional and uncomplicated love.

  2. Nia Says:

    Aw, I’m so sorry. It’s always hard to lose a best friend. Just know that he’s in a place where he will never feel any pain or fear or hunger or sorrow again. His days will be filled with all his favorite things and his spirit will be with you always. That’s the “Rainbow Bridge” where pets go when they pass from this world.

    I think it’s amazing that you’ve seen this as a gift or a message of hope. I truly feel 2018 will bring joy, light, and love to you in a way you’ve never felt before.

    “My heart has joined the thousand, for my friend has stopped running today.” (Watership Down, I think)

  3. Noquay Says:

    So sorry Moxie. No matter how many critters we have in our lives, each one leaves her/his mark on our hearts. Such a beautiful cat too.

  4. Laura Says:

    This was truly heartbreaking to read. I am so, so sorry and I can imagine exactly what you’re going through.
    My cat found her way to me as an abandoned kitten meowing at my doorstep. Now, years later as she’s getting older, I’m already starting to dread the day she’s no longer going to be around.
    You will always have the memories and the joy and comfort Moon has brought into your life will always be there with you in some way. And I’m sure he could not have wanted a better owner and a friend.

  5. Joy Says:


    I just wished HBD to you on your previous post since I remembered that today was your birthday, but now I see this and I got all choked up…

    I’m really sorry.

    I know that he’s gone and that you will miss him. You should be happy knowing that you provided well for your best friend, you gave him a good home, warmth and love. And from your post, he loved you in return and made you feel like you mattered.

    You deserve this love. I wish you that 2018 will bring you love, happiness, and prosperity.

  6. Pina Says:

    A beautiful tribute. Sorry for your loss! Our pets are often closer to us than most of our friends or family. They are like our children because they always depend on us but also best friend, confidant, and soul mate because they see their person without any mask or guard up day-in and day-out and accept us no matter what. I miss mine everyday. It sounds like your perspective on this is great. I pray for comfort and healing in your life during this difficult time.

  7. CT Says:

    So very sorry for the lost of your beloved pet. They are truly the one thing in this world that loves us unconditionally, wanting nothing from us that is not honest and true.

  8. UWSGal Says:

    So sorry you are going through this. Losing such a long-term friend is devastating. I too have a siamese cat about the same age who’s been given 6 months to live by the vet over the holidays due to a renal failure. I dread the day when she will no longer jump on my lap and curl up with me. Hang in there…

    • ATWYSingle Says:

      I want to say take him to another vet but the reality is that – even if they do get another year or so – it probably won’t be a quality year. I told Moon over and over that he wasn’t to hang on for me, that I’d be okay. I didn’t want him lingering, his body slowly shutting down. You don’t want that either. It sucks to endure, though. I’m very, very sorry.

  9. Coffeestop Says:

    I am so sorry. My dog died unexpectedly two weeks ago, many times he was there for me in a way people were not. The first couple of days I was devestated. I am forcing myself to stay busy take extra walks and yoga classes. It is at least tiring me out so my mind does not churn hut I am still grieving.

  10. ATWYSingle Says:

    Sunday and Monday I took Ativan to get through the day/night. Today was my first “normal” day. I came home from the gym and went directly to my bed and rubbed the empty spot on the comforter where Moon used to sleep while I was out. As soon as he’d hear me come in, his head would pop up.

    This pain is excruciating.

  11. Sheba Says:

    So sorry to hear this, Moxie. He was a family member and there is a special place for animals that nobody else can fill. He had a long and happy life and could not have had a better companion.

  12. wishing u well Says:

    I am so, so sorry to hear of Moon’s passing. A beloved family member is never easy. It’s a tough start to the new year, and I like what you said about the journey. You were amazing to Moon in life, and that love will surely boomerang back to you in many ways.

  13. Bethany Says:

    I’m so sorry. It took me a long time to “get over” (I hate that phrase) the death of my old cat, but I can finally look back fondly when I think about him. It takes some time.

    • Laura Says:

      I still tear up thinking about the day our family dog was put to sleep. When you love something that much you can never heal completely.

  14. Yvonne Says:

    I’m so sorry to hear about Moon. I hope you’ll find comfort in all the years you had together and the memories, and in knowing that you gave your beloved friend a safe home that he might not have otherwise had.

  15. Trish Says:

    This hits home. For me, the hardest part about loving my fur babies is ultimately losing them.

    I wish I had the perfect words to ease your sorrow.

    Peace and comfort to you.

  16. AC Says:

    That was a beautifully written tribute to your kitty. Your friends reference to “Hero of a Thousand Faces” was especially poignant. Sorry for your loss.

  17. Laura Says:

    I’m sorry for your loss. You must have done something right if he lived as long as he did. Remind yourself of that when you’re sad. You gave him a wonderful life. How he died is not as important as how he lived.

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