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It's harder to be strong without you here
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Pet Lovers

My Content
11 Sep 2015
You were always a special boy, Tristan, but your most amazing traits were evident during your hard fought war. 14 months ago you decided you would not be a victim of circumstance, the first attack came and you lost a third of your weight and became severely dehydrated -we fought the doctor and came home with you and your IV, remember? I didn't trust anyone would take care of you as I would-... That's when we started "spooning" it was the only way I could keep you from pulling your IV. I don't think I really decided to keep doing it once the IV was out, it just felt right me holding you each and every night from then on. Slowly but surely, you regained your weight. Then your sight began to fail, very very slowly. I was amazed you were not deterred by it, you learned to walk around, bumped your head a lot but kept going. Then I saw signs of motor communication issues, you were not able to "push reverse", so we made sure you were always allowed a path straightforward. Other issues with your liver and kidney were diagnosed -I am beginning to doubt the doctors were ever right- but you -again- amazed everyone not only surpassing the 2 days to live after the IV but the month they thought you would last after the kidney /liver diagnosis. You were so brave all the while; I don't think I ever saw you sad. I remember sometimes you got scared or confused and called me -that sweet cry you used only for me- until I came and hold you, you were so calm in my arms. Tell you the truth, I don't remember you being so active before; it seems like you decided to take each step you could, you were not gonna take thing lying down. You never ever stopped, not the loss of your sight nor your deteriorating motor skills were ever enough against your spirit, not ever. I remember how you loved your pen, there you could go for miles without stopping for anyone or anything but yourself. I remember watching you through the camera go round and round, and the last few months when I brought it up to my office, oh how I loved to have you near, you seemed happy and content. We had our ups and downs in this war, your motor skills really deteriorated late March, but a change in doctors led us to new meds which seemed to have a Lazarus kind of effect -although the doctor only gave you a month or two more-. I don’t think you ever believed the doctors when they gave you a timetable; maybe you were just to stubborn, maybe you didn’t want to leave me. I believed in you in your strength, so I started researching every natural homeopathic or alternative treatment, everything was made available to you. You truly seemed to get better. You seemed unstoppable, indestructible... You.

Last Wednesday I was freaking out again, you were eating a bit less and having labored breathing in certain positions... But you were walking, that meant you were strong and fighting right?! The doctors -the three of them- said that it was expected and manageable, one thought it was due to a congestion in your forehead the other two a consequence of your cancer pushing on some other nerves. All of them gave you something; only the one with the acupuncture training seemed to relieve your symptoms. I really thought you'd pull through as always, my little fighter. By Friday the other doctors gave you more meds, that afternoon Danny came home from his trip just in time as you were getting worse and we had to take you to the hospital. I didn't wanna leave you there, we had never spent a night apart since this began. I really didn't want to leave you there, but the doctor said this time I couldn't take care of you at home. I came to see you the next morning, I brought you your pillow, you looked tired and a bit out; they said you had fluid in your thorax and had to start taking it out slowly. Definitely couldn't take you home now. I wanted to, I swear. I was so sad that Danny said I should call my mom, which I did; somehow she knew you better and knew you were tired and ready to go. She got on a plane immediately, she loves us that much. She knew but I didn't -maybe I refused to accept you could be done with this "stage", I've been trying to believe this is just a stage after which there's another one to come, I need too-. I came back that afternoon to see you again and stayed another hour by your side, I wanted to be by your side so that you could sleep and get better, you snoozed for a bit. I asked you to let me know if you wanted to let go, I think you tried to stay a bit more in the fight to be with me, thank you for that. I went home with my heart in pieces, almost couldn't drive. Mom finally arrived after almost six hours of airports and planes; she said I should really see what was on your heart, that if you were done fighting I should not make you stay in pain, not for my sake, you had done plenty in these months of bravely fighting the unknown. I had to do this last act of love and exchange your pain for mine, if need be. You should know, Tris, I kept calling since I left you there on Friday to see how you were doing, doctors hated that but I didn't mind. Sunday came and I was already awake, couldn't sleep really. I called again, you were worse; I said I'd come and get you... It was time. I had talked about this possibility to your last doctor; this wouldn't be done in there, not where so much pain was going on, so much noise. No, if I had to let you go you could not be scared, I needed to make sure you felt safe to transition. You needed to be home. I arranged a deal, he'd come home to help when the time came; he couldn't at the last minute, so I made a new deal: I'd do it-"Just give me the shot, I'll sign anything", I said-. I couldn't trade your peace for anything I might feel later, Mom said I had to return all your strength. She's so wise. Danny took care of everything leaving me the opportunity to hold you and assure you that I would keep my promise and make everything better; he was crying all the while, he was so strong for us. You were very sad, as soon as I lifted you your expression changed you haven't been able to see anything but shadows for 3+ months but you knew it was me picking you up in my arms. On the ride home your breath calmed down, you knew we were taking you home. After all the trips of the last months cars are no longer a scary thing for you, my love -heck, you even slept on both airplane rides and our road trips-. I was holding you so close, that ride seemed endless and short at the same time. When we got home I put you on our bed, we all got around you and gave you lot of love, each of us remembered some bit of our time with you. Even your brother Apolo gave you a few licks and stayed by your side the whole time. Your breathing was back to normal and your eyes were almost shut. We were celebrating your amazing and courageous life, how you were able to cope, adapt and thrive after every new obstacle. While we talked, I gave you drops of brown sugar in boiled water that Danny made for you -he remembered after a procedure you can always taste the medicine and did not want you to have that bitter taste in your mouth-. We talked and whispered to your ear all the things we wanted to tell you; with each word you seemed better. You were no longer confused, you were aware and you knew you were home with those who loved you the most. We said our goodbyes with joy to have met you, and I tried to hold back the pain so that you wouldn't feel as if you had to stay, not in pain. I snuggled up to you, put my arm around you and told you we would go for one last nap, I felt how you relaxed, you knew this, you knew naptime. I asked for the syringe and placed it on the IV, I started to tell you how much I loved you and how brave you had been; then, I told you about a place where you would somehow exist and of those who would be waiting there to meet you. I told you about my great-grandmother Chuy, the one to "blame" for my love for cats, how she was the one that taught me how to love these furry tender souls; she would be waiting for you, she would have you on her lap while knitting another "cat pillow" for me. I told you about her son -my grandfather Manuel-, told you to look for the guy with the white 5 o'clock shadow beard and a ponytail, he would feed you. I warned you my grandfather Poncho would moan you had been over spoiled, but not to worry as he always does that; he would make sure you are safe for you are mine and he loves what I love -his mom, my great-grandmother Josefa would make sure of that-. I had one last favor to ask of you, to save a place for me to join you later. It was time, I said a thousand times "I love you" as I pushed ever so slowly the liquid through your IV. I hugged you and felt your breathing slow down, Danny took the syringe from me and made sure he was the last to push it in -he didn't want that on me-. I held back the tears, mom said it could stop you from going in peace, so I held it in... I wanted you happy, better. I stayed there holding you, kissing you. Then you were free.

Nothing was planned, but everything that followed was so right. We tended to your body as if you were still there, we removed the IV and the probe carefully then mom and I slowly cleaned you up. Danny felt it would be a way of honoring your love to put some perfumed oil all over your lovely fur, we chose blackcurrant and vanilla for you. When we finished preparing you for the next step, Mom and Danny left the room so I could be alone with you. I snuggled up against you, hugged you and played a few songs while I smelled your little head for the last time. I wanted to remember how your body felt against mine, at the time I felt you needed protecting but now I know it was me who was in need not you. I finally gathered the strength and carried you down the stairs, it felt surreal; you were in my arms, waiting to be taken somewhere but you were not really there. We took you to the crematorium, it was Sunday, we were told the last goodbye would have to be on Monday. I panicked for a second thinking about leaving you there, in the cold; I had to remind myself that you were no longer there. Monday came and I saw you again, mom says it was a blessing as it gave us time to say goodbye again a little bit calmer this time, a little less hurt. I said one last goodbye and then it was done. I took you back home that day, and I asked mom to take you back with her... back to my real home. You're so important, Tris, that she came to see you when you were so sick to help me choose what was best for you and then took you home. Home, to our garden, the place where the other souls of our life companions that went before you would guide you to your place among those I love so that you could wait for me. That's how important you are.

Danny dreamt of you Sunday night, he thought he was petting Apolo but it felt different, when he looked back it was you he was touching -your hair looked brighter, it shinned through-, you let him feel you for a while and in a very cat like way stood up and went to play with your siblings. He says that was you coming back to let us know you're all right. Since you've transcended, your sister Eva has been playing with rays of light -mom pointed it out to me first on Sunday-. Eva just did it again as I am writing, I don't remember her ever doing that and I wonder if it's you that's playing with her -free of your enemy, back in your prime-. I am now preparing for you to come to me, Danny says I have to be calm first, maybe sleep a whole night without waking up in the middle scared that you're no longer by my side and that I didn't do enough. He says you'll come to me. I am waiting...

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