Farewell to Simba

When we visited Simba on Tuesday afternoon we knew he wasn’t faring well. The vets words prepared us for the worse when she said, ‘We’ll see how he goes, finger’s crossed, miracles do happen.’ He made such an effort to greet us when we visited, but then quickly curled up in a semi-sleep on the warm hotty. He wasn’t eating and he was losing hope. A part of me felt he just wanted to come home. I wondered if he was giving up because he thought he would not be coming home. But if he’d come home his health would have soon failed him.

Wednesday morning the vet phoned to say Simba had gone into a coma and was foaming at the mouth. He was leaving this world for one where our dearly departed will care for him. He sent messages to so many people he’d touched on his last night. Our neighbour joined us at the vets to say final farewells. His body was still warm, he looked as though he’d wake at any moment, but we knew it wasn’t to be so. The cuddly toy the girls had given him was tucked under his paw. He was wrapped in a blanket. He was so peaceful. We all shed a tear. The girls asked if we’d plant a tree in the garden to remember him by and we will certainly do that. Our dear friend Lucy is going to lay a flower in the Botanical Gardens at the weekend to remember where I first found him, as a stray needing a good home.

When my neighbour phoned friends and relatives that had stayed at her house for a long stay they too shed tears. Whenever anyone packed to leave he’d take a sock from them or crawl into their suitcase. One of those friends said they’d had a dream of Simba the night before he passed.

Today, I keep expecting him to tap at the door. I went up to my bedroom to sort out the laundry and found myself looking for him on the bed. In the garden I look for him. He was always such a character and a good ‘ratter’ at that!

Before the children arrived in our lives he was very much our baby. He would sleep at the foot of our bed and on lazy Sunday morning’s he would try to catch our feet under the duvet as we moved them about! Another favourite trick of his was to hide under bed and catch the ankles of passers by – a few guests were caught out! When the girls arrived in our lives his world was forever changed! But he was so gentle with them. He’d tolerate so much (though they were very good with him). He would curl up next to Charli and I when we took a nap in her first year. When I was heavily pregnant with Charli he came and slept on my tummy – too much weight to bear – but incredibly touching. I remember Charli moving in my tummy, responding to his warmth.

We shall miss him dearly and are so thankful for his presence in our lives. We hope his spirit is at peace and he’s forever happy in cat heaven.