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  1. Lisa Smith
    March 29, 2019 @ 10:57 am

    Dear Victoria,
    You do so much good, but are you sure you aren’t pushing yourself too hard? You have such a tender, sensitive heart, and it sounds like it’s taking a toll on you. You can’t help anyone else if you’re physically and mentally depleted. Please take care of yourself!


  2. Vickie H.
    March 29, 2019 @ 10:58 am

    Oh, VEB!!!! I am so SO SORRY!


  3. Consuelo Baehr
    March 29, 2019 @ 11:05 am

    I didn’t understand one word of this but in case it was very sad – condolences. Sorry.


  4. Lisa A.
    March 29, 2019 @ 11:30 am

    Oh, I would give anything to have that kind of space to “bring in the kittens”….anxiously awaiting your kitten posts in the near future and hoping it helps you heal…..


  5. fiverx313
    March 29, 2019 @ 11:39 am

    i’m so sorry for your loss


  6. mmfromkc
    March 29, 2019 @ 11:40 am

    Thank you for the love and care you provided those kittens. They knew they were loved during their short little lives. Sending you healing energy to help you get through the scrubbing and your tears.


  7. Loran
    March 29, 2019 @ 11:40 am

    As a fellow cat rescuer I knew immediately what you were going to say before I read all the words. I know those frantic trips to the vet to try to save a dying creature, the fear that you keep tamped down as you accelerate as fast as safely possible, and then the inevitable “I’m so sorry…”

    Today marks the ninth anniversary of my baby boy, Ashton’s, first day with us. He was a day old, tiny tiny tiny and so trusting. I fought hard to save him, to save my husband, to fix the world that allowed kittens to be abandoned by their mother and cancer to exist. The kitten lived, and thrived. But he got sick last November and before I could do whatever it was I could, he died. I held him, and when my now ex-husband came in to check on him I had to sob out that Ashton was gone. Six weeks later my ex-husband died. No one can tell me one isn’t related to the other.
    Now I scrub. Scrub everything I can get my hands on because I don’t know what killed either one. I have no answers. I scrub and organize and try to move forward.
    Yesterday was the ninth anniversary of a young woman named Ashton’s death, from cancer. I never met her but her life and journey was so soul-touching that I named the abandoned kitten after her. Ashton’s mom loved that, felt that her daughter still lived just a little bit in the tiny orange kitten we nurtured.

    I sobbed all the way through your post. I feel your pain and thank you for writing about it. The world has been a tough place to be as of late.


  8. Stacey Clark
    March 29, 2019 @ 11:46 am

    As you re-do this space, do not remember the details of their death, remember the details of their life and their unconditional kitten love. If they could tell you the same, they would. Bring positivity and love to this room, because someday it will be a kitten room again. When we lost our 16yr old cats just 3 months apart, I could only focus on their death, and I could not stop crying (ugly ruin-your-mascara cry). Then it dawned on me, I was not allowing myself to feel their love. Now I focus on that and believe when they left us, they left all the love they had for us with us, and took all the love we had for them with them so we are never without each other. Focus on the good.


    • Melisa P
      March 29, 2019 @ 1:43 pm

      Stacey Clark, I want you to know your story about them taking all the love we gave them with them and vice versa…It’s brought a bit of comfort to me since losing my dad and several pets in a short span of time. I’ve heard people say “think of the happy memories” but it’s not the same eloquent way of saying that all the love is still ours. Thank you. And Elizabeth, I am so very sorry for your loss.


    • sarah
      March 29, 2019 @ 2:56 pm

      Stacy, that was so helpful and right about sharing the love, always and forever.

      I watch our little adopted cats breathing and sleeping and my heart is filled with love. I try to save up as much as possible to get us through any hard times in the future.

      Victoria, you are an amazing person. That sweet little kitten knew you went all out to give him a completely loved life which you did.
      I like that you are cleaning the space up for more kitties to love in honor of him. Your wit and sense of humor will get you through this hard time too.


    • Sheila
      March 29, 2019 @ 9:58 pm

      Stacey Clark, your thoughts on the love we give and receive from our furry children moved me. Really a beautiful way to explain how I’ve felt since the loss of our Bailey. Thank you for sharing your thoughts so eloquently. I am sending light and love to VEB, all who posted on this page, and all who share in the joy of sharing life with animals/grief in their loss.
      I wouldn’t trade a day of it, even knowing the cost of saying goodbye.


  9. Jeane Gallo
    March 29, 2019 @ 11:46 am

    My heart is breaking for you. My husband walked in and asked what was wrong and I started sobbing while trying to tell him the sad story. I can’t imagine your grief. Such trusting, loving souls. We have four kitties and the oldest one is very frail and has a difficult time walking. She’s dozing on a heating pad next to me. They give so much love and ask for so little in return.


  10. Lisa D.
    March 29, 2019 @ 12:09 pm

    I’m so very sorry you lost your sweet little kitten. I have never heard of Panleukomenia. It must be something known by a more common name.


  11. Lisa D.
    March 29, 2019 @ 12:14 pm

    OK. Feline distemper. It makes me so sad to hear this. I’m so very sorry Victoria.


  12. judy
    March 29, 2019 @ 12:41 pm

    I don’t believe our words can change the deep grief you feel but I have found a life philosophy in the children’s song
    Row, row row your boat,gently down the stream
    merrily merrily merrily life is but a dream.
    It tells me that I must row my own boat,think and act for myself and not mind someones else’s business.

    To be positive and merry with each day and leave of yesterday that which was negative and be merry about the positive.
    When our little boats pass round the bends and storms of our life stream,the past is gone from sight and a new day dawns. Stick with the dream -avoid the nightmares
    Grief can become a whirlpool that spins us round and takes us down for far too long and so hard that it begins to encompass all frustration and disappointment,almost addictive.
    I apologize for the amateur attempt at advice,it is sent with care and concern for a person I admire greatly and wish her happier times ASAP


  13. Lisa Garber
    March 29, 2019 @ 1:33 pm

    I was a devoted, enraptured fan before this post. I flacked your blog to everyone I could. But now…

    Now I love you and wish I could adopt you as my little sister, you sweet, impossibly darling floofball-loving girl..l


  14. Katie O'Brian-Robles
    March 29, 2019 @ 1:45 pm

    My heart aches for you… Heads bowed. knees bent. Asking for peace with this pain.


  15. D H
    March 29, 2019 @ 1:47 pm

    Victoria, we have been kitten foster parents for 10 years and have also had a few bouts with PanLeuk, with similarly devastating experiences. Holding a dying kitten and trying to save it/comfort it has to be one of the most difficult things we’ve ever experienced. I’m so sorry you had to go through it. Hugs.

    Our Humane Society gave us a spray bottle of a special disinfectant called Accel after our first PanLeuk case. We clean obsessively too but we also sprayed this anywhere the kitten has been as an extra precaution. We also waited 6 months before getting another. We have had LOTS of kittens since and none have been infected and our house is a similar 1900 victorian with lots of nooks and crannies that make it hard to feel like you can possibly get it 100% sterilized.

    Sending hugs, and thank you for what you do for the kittens, and for the passionate posts you share about animal cruelty. I have followed you for years and think you are wonderful.


  16. Tina S.
    March 29, 2019 @ 3:55 pm

    Losing a cat is it’s own particular hell. I would give you a hug if I could. Be extra gentle with yourself.


  17. Benita Martinkowski
    March 29, 2019 @ 7:31 pm

    Your story about broke me. I’m sorry for you and for the kittens but happy you will keep saving cats.


  18. Marianne in Mo.
    March 29, 2019 @ 8:40 pm

    I won’t comment on your pain; it would only put it on your mind again. But I will instead comment on the lovely space you have for fluffkins to feel secure in. It is beautiful, and I want to be a stray cat so I can find a lovely space in your third floor to build my confidence! As for the spindles and railing, why not just use a clear poly coat? You could spray it on (with ventilation!) very quickly and be done. Just lay something protective over the flooring and stairs so the overspray doesn’t land where you don’t want it. Boom – done!


  19. Tina
    March 29, 2019 @ 9:41 pm

    I am so sorry. I clean when I am mad, but I can see cleaning when you are sad.


  20. Lori Sterling
    March 29, 2019 @ 11:19 pm

    Oh, my, such sadness and regret are hard to cope with. I hope you know you gave them the best life that they possibly could have had. Understanding that nothing is permanent here on earth is the toughest of the many tough life lessons. I wish I knew how to tell you to understand it, but I cannot, because I do not know. What I do know is that experiencing this pain cracks you wide open, bringing you closer to the answer. Sending you much love and light and understanding.


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