A Blessing Named Bituminous

A lapful of love, a warm chin in my elbow, a soft paw tapping my chest, green eyes gazing into mine. This was Bituminous for many wonderful years.
This morning his time ran out, and I let him go peacefully before he lost his peace in this life. He snuggled his cheek into my hand right up to the end, enjoying my gentle love that wanted to keep him forever, but even more wanted for him to never know the suffering that would have come soon due to his failing body.
My Bituminous—a mighty hunter in his younger years; a friend small in stature but great in trust; a beloved member of our family for over eighteen years. Somehow, because he had beaten the odds so many times over the years, I thought he would keep on going forever.
I learned much from my little friend. Early on he showed me what trust looks like. I remember stepping outside before bed and calling him to come inside. The night was black and so was he, and all was silent. Then a small piece of the night would step into the circle of light spilling from the windows, and Bituminous would come running joyfully to me from the darkness. A small creature, less than one tenth my size, hurrying toward me without hesitation, with perfect trust. From him I learned to have a greater trust in God, who is so much greater than I.
In recent years Bituminous has helped me learn to slow down and savor quiet moments. Over the past few years I have spent many happy hours with my warm cat on my lap, with him sleeping or watching me, and me reading or watching his calm breathing. Life slowed down as I stepped out of the rat race, into peaceful reflection and silent connection that enriched my days and helped me grow into the person I am today.
Thank you, Bituminous, for the gifts you brought me. You were a gift in every way.

12 Replies to “A Blessing Named Bituminous”

  1. Oh Melissa, I'm crying. I understand all to well what it means to loose someone so special to you. You gave Bituminous many wonderful years of love. What a beautiful post and memories.

  2. Melissa – your words brought tears to my eyes as well. The sting of letting go of my beloved dog Todd-boy feels fresh again ~ he was a favorite amongst all the animals I have been blessed to spend my life with. May your happiest memories comfort you…until you meet again!

  3. I'm so very saddened and sorry for your loss, Melissa. I know how much you are missing him, and how much it's breaking your heart to have had to say goodbye to him. We had to let our beloved Mollie go to the Rainbow Bridge two years ago, after she suffered a second massive stroke. She died peacefully in my arms, knowing that she was loved, and always had been for all her 13 years with us.

    This is the only downside of having such a bond and relationship with our furry companions…the fact that they don't live as many years as we humans do. It's heartbreaking beyond words, I know. But by keeping him in your heart, your memories, your love for him keeps him alive forever. I know that to be true with all the beleved cats and dogs we've cared for but had to, heartachingly, say goodbye to over the years.

    Tears are falling from my eyes as I type this. I wish I could be there to give you a big hug. Know that he knew how much he was loved by you and your family throughout his life. Keep that with you always, which will in turn keep him with you always.