All That Remains

My cat died on a sunny day in the dead of winter.

The emergency room parking lot, the hoods of cars glinting in the crystal day.

Lugging a cat carrier full of dying cat.

The doctor young, takes her to triage, inserts a catheter. Ultrasound.

She’s very sick, her spleen ruptured, internal bleeding. The emergency vet pauses. How far do you want to take this?

Her question is the answer.

I guess it’s time to say goodbye.

It’s the last nice thing you can do for her.

Ok. I choke on tears.

Do you want to be with her?


She squirms in my arms in the hospital’s living room, which is really a dying room.

She’s a beautiful cat, the doctor says, with those green eyes and her gentle giant stature.

I hold her wrapped in a blue towel in my lap and say, she’s nervous, you can do it now.

Her eyes will stay open, she says.

Life exiting her body, her head a heavy dead weight in my hand.

Back in the parking lot, the blue sky and sparkling sun on this mournful day.

A cat carrier empty of cat.

The phone call to my mom ending in both of our sobs. They had to put her down, I say, I’m sorry.

Two new cats who don’t really get along. A bunny who remembers her.

In the front yard, a black Rubbermaid barrel full of her once radioactive waste. After her thyroid treatment, her waste had to be held in a separate container for 90 days.

Seeing that barrel every day for the last three months when I arrive home from work.

All that remains.

This Friday I pull the barrel to the end of the driveway to be picked up by the garbage collector.


  1. Oh Cindy, so sorry you are having to recover from such a loss. Thank you for sharing this with us. I’m sure it was difficult. Sending you lots of love and hugs.



    • Hi Geenie,

      Thank you for remaining a caring and loving friend through everything. It means a lot to me. I hope you are doing okay and hope to meet you in person this July.

      With love,


  2. This is so sad and so beautifully written. “A cat carrier empty of cat.” Just like you are a Sweetie lover, empty of her love. Good for you for going to the deepest, rawest place to write this. You know you are a great writer when you allow yourself to go there.


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