All my books were written in this room. All my talks were prepared in this room. And Vixey had been my faithful companion for two years during all this time. I spend many, many hours in this room each day. And whenever I look away from my laptop, right there, on my left, would be Vixey, sitting on the router, her favourite spot. And I'd call her, "Piggy-Wiggy!", and she would always, always respond with the wag of her little tail.
Since the very day I brought Vixey back (with brother Wii aka Little Chief), she had been hugging hot things. She started with plug points, then our hi-fi set, and finally progressed to the computer router which she absolutely loves. The vet said she probably had hypothyroidism, hence, feels cold all the time. Yet, she never liked hot water bottles. She just loved electrical gadgets.
So I brought Vixey home today, and placed her at her favourite spot in the room, next to the router.
You're home now, Vixey.
All the cats, and Mac and Bobby gathered around. They seemed to know what had happened as there was a melancholic air in the house. One by one, they came to see and sniff at Vixey.
I put on the CD of chanting, and I sat with Vixey at her favourite spot.
Vixey's brother, Wii aka Little Chief
Bunny saying goodbye
Bobby was with us all the time
Suki did not quite know what was going on although we brought her to say thank you and goodbye to Vixey.
Indy, on the other hand, was clearly upset when we brought him to see Vixey. He struggled to go away, so I let him be.
When Vixey was first hospitalised this round, I had wanted to have a photo taken with her in the house, but we did not have time. And I told myself, Vixey would be coming home, and I would surely have a chance to take a photo with her.
Vixey at the clinic
The photo above shows Vixey at the clinic on the second day. I guess this is the last photo I would ever have of Vixey and me. You probably cannot see Vixey in the photo because I was wearing black pants. That's my little black beauty.
It was always difficult to take a photo with Vixey because she was never comfortable being carried. She liked being stroked and patted, but not being carried. The vet said somewhere probably hurts, and that is why she never liked being carried.
All this while, though I did not write about it, I was well aware (and I had been told by every vet I've brought Vixey to) that her lifespan would not be very long. Vixey was mentally- and physically-challenged. She had a growth deficiency and her organs were all under-developed, thus they would fail sooner than the average cat. I had already been told about this and was thus, in a way, always prepared for this to happen one day.
When Vixey was admitted four days ago, her vet had said to me, "Remember we knew this would happen? Just that we did not know when? Maybe it's happening now."
I did not want to take his word for it because I wanted to keep my hopes high, but I was prepared for the worst. At the back of my mind, I also did not want Vixey to suffer from any prolonged agony of pain. If this is it, and if she has to go, I hoped Nature would let her go peacefully and painlessly. But before that happened, I would definitely still do everything possible to save her.
Then, Vixey starting improving after being put on drips and this gave everyone hope, including her vet (who is normally a realistic (read: pessimistic) person). We were already talking about having her blood taken on Monday, assuming she could come home, and I would be learning how to give her her dialysis jabs myself.
But suddenly, everything took a turn for the worst this morning. Her neurological signs became very bad, her eyes starting "bobbing" and she was already mentally "off". I did not see all this as the clinic was closed. The vet related this to me later.
So, that was what happened. It was time for Vixey to go, and she went quickly. I am comforted to know that there was no prolonged suffering. That would have been extremely heart-breaking for me.
So, when James Kho, the proprietor of Pet Memorial Service, finally arrived at our doorstep, it was time for Vixey's final journey.
I whispered to Vixey that we all have to go now, and brought her to the car. My husband, daughter and I will bring Vixey to the crematorium.
As we were about to leave, Indy came....finally.
Indy wasn't upset now.
Indy saying goodbye to his big sister before we left for the crematorium
At the crematorium, we all said one last final goodbye, and I placed Vixey back into her favourite basket (not the one you see in the photos). It is a smaller one.
Her cremation was accompanied with the soft chanting of the Metta Chant. That is the chanting that had been accompanying Vixey each time she got sick.
Animals have no religion, and they don't need to. But they understand and appreciate love and kindness. In return, they give us unconditional loyalty and faithfulness. Even when you scold them and reject them, they come right back to you and still love you. What better religion can there be than that?
I believe in immediate rebirth. It is comforting when you do, because you know the moment life ends in this body, it is already reborn in another. And what you see before you after life has expired is just an "empty shell". The "spirit" (or consciousness, or soul, or whatever we wish to call it) is already reborn elsewhere.
My husband said Vixey's "tour" as a cat is meant to be a short one. She just came back as a cat to pay a karmic debt, and now that she is done, she is off to a better realm. Vixey's going to be reborn a lady of great substance, he said. And that's because she lived her (this) life as a lady of great substance.
Despite all her medical problems and her retardation, Vixey not only did not give us any behavioural problems, she was an extremely considerate cat. Whenever I gave her her enemas, she would jump out to the garden (something she never does on ordinary days) and stay there because she did not want to dirty our floor (with her uncontrolled defecation after the enema). Vixey was the only cat who knew how to use the bathroom, and she trained all the kittens under her to use the bathroom too.
Most importantly and unforgettable would be how Vixey would take care of every kitten that I bring home to nurse. Indy benefited most of all. Vixey practically brought Indy up, taught him how to use the bathroom and took him to the food and water bowls in the kitchen to eat. Vixey accepted every kitten that I brought back to nurse. She had never even once hissed at any of them though for a cat, it was infringing into her territory. Kimba, Creamie & Crackers, Suki, and even Joanie (an adult female cat) were all allowed to share her room and her space.
Vixey truly had a heart of gold.
She will be reborn as a person with a heart of gold, and she will do great things in life.
I will miss Vixey very, very much. It is going to be very hard for me in the next few weeks, but life has to go on.
And life will go on....
The first thing I've decided to do right now is to work on the reprint of Pawprints on My Heart. This reprint will be done in loving memory of Vixey. Let the message of love and kindness to animals spread far and wide so that more people would come together to help the animals.
The second thing is AnimalCare work will go on as usual. We have not had a day's break ever since we started on 31st May, and we will not have any break now. We will go on helping as many animals as we can, in memory of all our departed furry friends who have touched our hearts.
In ever loving memory of my dear little Vixey,
May you have a happy life now, in a much happier existence.
You did great things in this life, despite all your shortcomings,
You will do great things in your next life.
Vixey passed away on World Animal Day, 4th October 2009.