My Dearest Frodo,
When I first saw your picture online at a rescue shelter in 2003, I knew you were part of our family. My heart recognized your soul and I understood you were the furry best friend I’d been seeking. I called that very second and inquired about you, the fuzzy grey tabby kitten who’d stopped my world in its tracks.
The shelter told me you were just six weeks old, but your mom was no longer around. So tiny and young to be so alone in a big world. I couldn’t let you stay in a cage alone anymore. By the time the sun set on this particular day, you were huddled in my arms, a sneezy and scared kitten with no idea where you were heading.
But you were safe and loved and whether you understood or not, your life would never be lonely again.
We had to get you better first though. The upper respiratory infection that sickened you almost took you away from us. You fought though, through all the crusty eyes and snotty noses, you survived and grew from a fuzzy kitten into a healthy and distinguished gentleman.
Your Tabby Cat Ways Persuaded Hearts
Did you know you, Frodo, that you converted the hearts of those who did not love cats? How many human friends did you make which commented how cool a cat you were or how they had no idea cats could be so intelligent or friendly. You dispelled the mean cat myth for any who knew you. In your own grey tiger way, you influenced so many and taught them what being feline was truly about.
Your perfect tabby swirls and stripes caught so many of my tears.
And the velvety ears you kept so meticulously clean pricked so many times at my laughter.
Joy filled my ears time and again at your melodious and trumpeting meow.
You even broke barriers to become a kitty who could speak the language of people after I learned the language of cat. The first time you uttered, “I love you,” the love in my heart for such a good cat swelled to overtake all of me. I followed you through the house, hoping to persuade you to say it again. And you did, so many times through your 15 years, I couldn’t keep count.
On my hardest days, when first I lost my dad, your ‘I love yous’ and sandpaper kisses gave me the strength to weather the sadness. When tragedy reared again and took my mother after two long years of illness, you remained at my side, carrying my burdens on your precious white paws too.
The King Falls Ill
When you became sick, my heart could not accept a world without you. Nor could I abide your feeling ill or in pain. Of course, nursing you in your time of need was of the utmost importance. You deserved all the love and support I and the world could offer.
Together, you and I battled the diabetes ravaging your body. But three years in and 15 years after I saw your picture for the first time, your body was tired and it was time for you to go. I held you as you glimpsed a rainbow bridge in the distance, your fur catching my tears one last time. And for as much as losing you hurt, to never have known you would have been a pain far worse, an emptiness I’d never understand.
You guided me through the hardest parts of life with feline antics and offered proof cats understand far more than we realize. For that and so much more, I thank you, Frodo, king of tabs. I will never find words deep enough to thank you for helping me through the moments I felt orphaned after the death of my parents. As a kitten, you understood that feeling too. But together, we were never alone.
My love and respect to you always, Frodo, the tabbiest of angels!