Tribute to Branwyn
The moment that you died, my heart split in two.
One side filled with memories. The other died with you.
I often lay awake at night, when the world is fast asleep.
And take a walk down memory lane, with tears upon my cheeks,
Remembering you is easy, I do it every day.
But missing you is heartache, that never goes away.
I hold you tightly within my heart, and there you will remain.
Life has gone on without you, But never will be the same.
On May 29th,2009 Branwyn made her journey across
the Rainbow Bridge.
She came to live with me in October
1998, a gift from someone who was trying to find a better home for
her, and was my constant companion. Constant is a good word to
describe my beautiful friend.
changing or varying; continuing without pause or letup; unceasing;
faithful; unswerving in love, devotion; resolute – something that
does not or cannot change or vary.
She came to me a very
difficult time in my life, newly divorced and trying to raise two
sons. Her unconditional love, healing energy and diva attitude kept
me smiling and laughing through the trials and tribulations of the
last ten years, and I know I could not have done it without her. She
always picked me up when I was down. She showed her love for me in a
way I have never experienced love before ~ without conditions. She
knew when I was sick.. she knew when I was sad.. she knew when I was
lonely...and even though there were times when I got frustrated with
her demands for attention ~ her healing energy always restored my
I was her third owner, but she
truly belonged to me as much as I belonged to her. I
did not know her real age although I was told she
was around 3 when she came to live with me, but in
retrospect I think she was older. The first week was
rough and she spent most of the time under the bed,
coming out for food and to go potty...but she soon
warmed up. In January 1999, we moved into our house,
which quickly became Branwyn's house...She ruled the
house, swatting at the boys (and their noise) with
her paws and making sure her food bowls were always
they are not the stars,
But rather openings in heaven
Where the love of our lost ones
Pours through and shines down
Upon us to let us know
They are happy.
Inspired by an Eskimo legend
Those of you who met her 'ladyship' knew
that she was truly in charge. I always joked that she owned the
house and just allowed me to live here with her. She owned
everything in the house and ruled everyone that came into it.
Anything that was brought home had to be immediately investigated
and then claimed as her own and you would find her lying on top of
clothes, costumes, paintball stuff and anything that came through
the door. She wanted ice cubes in her water and would always come
running when she heard ice being dispensed. Her food of choice was
Fancy Feast (of course) and the fishier the better. Tuna was saved
for holidays and special treats. She was far too regal to play
with toys, but periodically she would play the 'string game' or bat
around a catnip toy. When someone came to the door, she had to see
who was there, so that they could admire her and tell her how
beautiful she was. And that is one thing "Winnie" knew without a
doubt... that she was beautiful because told her so.
As a true diva she did not play well with
others (cats). In Winnie's World there was only room for one and she
had to be the center of attention. Period.
Branwyn loved to play dress-up with all my
Renaissance and belly dance costumes. She knew that when fair time
came, the costumes and hoopskirts would come out. After a long day
at the fair I would come home and throw the hoopskirt and tulle
petticoats into the tub and she would jump in and immerse herself in
them. She would sit and watch as I practiced my dance, with the
swirls of color of the veils and skirts, knowing that when done, I
would throw them on the floor so she could lay all over them.
|As a true
diva, Branwyn had at least two beds or baskets in every
room, in addition to the Master Suite upstairs. No
matter how many baskets or fancy beds she had, her
favorite place to sleep was a shoebox that was usually
too small for her body... because in Winnie's younger
years, she was quite the portly figure. She had no
problem wedging herself into one of my shoeboxes,
thinking that she fit, often looking like a 'muffin top'
over flowing and overlapping the top of the box.
My precious friend.. if I believed in the word
'soulmate' ~ truly it was you. You never complained of your pain, as
you were aging, but always tried to be your "Winnie self" and show
me that you were still my darling girl. You still did those silly
things that you did but I did notice how difficult it was for you to
eat. If the ice in your water caused you pain in the end my love, I
am so sorry... I should have realized it might have hurt you even
though you still wanted it.
The night before we went to the dentist, was
a long sleepless night, with me always calling for you to snuggle.
The way you looked at me that night and again in the morning, I
realize now you were saying goodbye. The past few months we spent so
much time snuggling on the loveseat until late into the night. I see
now that you were giving me your final days of love.
On that morning I did not think it was to be
your last day with me...if I had I would have done things
differently, I would have been overwrought and upset, I just thought
it was a normal day and that I would be picking you up after your
surgery. And I see now that is how it had to be. If I had been sad
when I dropped you there, you would have fought to stay with me, not
wanting to leave me even though you suffered. I know that you did
not want to suffer the indignity of having 6 teeth removed and
try to maintain some quality of life after that - but I selfishly
wanted to keep you here with me for as long as I could. If I had
known your true age would I have done things differently...?
probably not. I did not want you to be in any pain.
When the doctor called to tell me you were
gone I was in shock and disbelief, and yet, seeing you decline these
past few months has been difficult - your little body was tired but
you still tried to be the Winnie I knew. I believe that if you had
come out of the surgery the quality of your life would have been
limited and I would never have wanted to see you experience anything
that diminished your dignity and grace.
You saw the open window my
love, and you took it...knowing that I would not be
needing you anymore. You passed with dignity ~ so
that I would not have to make that difficult choice
for you...because I believe you knew how difficult
that would have been for me....even in your
transition you were protecting me, which is so like
Now you no longer suffer in silence the pain your
poor little exhausted body was feeling. I had no
idea how old you were, my love... All I knew was
that you were with me for 10 wonderful years and it
was nowhere near enough. My heart is broken
and I forever miss your sweet trusting face, your
soft meow, your perfectly pink heart shaped nose and
beautiful green eyes.
I did my best, my love, to
give you the best life that I could and I know
without a doubt you gave your best to me. I saved
you from the life you had before coming to live with
me...but what you gave to me, saved me, in so many
I can't even begin to tell you how much I
miss you..but I think you know. I know that I will
see you again when it is my time to make the
transition, but until then Winwin, please be patient
just a little while, and I will be patient too -
because the time will pass quickly for us and I know
that I will be with you again...sooner than we
Winnie's World ~ what made
Winnie Winnie and what I will miss about her
Seeing your face first thing in the
Your smell ~ a slight hint of lavender.
Your perfectly pink heart shaped nose, your pink
ears, your pink feet.
Taking naps with you because Winnie was wise in the ways
of taking naps and was very good at it.
Your beautiful deep green eyes that would always
look up at me with total trust and unconditional love.
The way you would race me up the stairs at bed time.
The way you would run into the bathroom first thing
in the morning to drink out of the sink and then lay in
there if I did not come fast enough.
How you come running when you heard the ice
The way you would never allow anyone to get into bed
with me because they would be taking up your side of the
The way you would swat at the boys when they would
walk by and try and keep them under control.
The way you examined your food/water bowls to make
sure they were always filled.
The way you would always look for my hands to pet
you - you knew they were there and you were going to
The songs I used to sing to you that you loved.
The way you used to come charging down the stairs when I
had been out of town on business ~ your name was the one
that I called when I came through the door and you were
always there to greet me.
Getting into bed with
you every night.
Waking up with you sharing my pillow and your power
paws tangled in my hair.
Reading before turning out the light, you snuggled
between my left arm and my side, perfectly positioning
your head in my hand so I could stroke your head.
Falling asleep with your head on my shoulder.
Sitting on the loveseat to drink my morning tea,
waiting for you to come and sit next to me and when you
got there seeing the look of pure trust and love in your
deep green eyes and I stroked your soft white coat.
Laying on the couch or bed and having you jump onto
my chest to stare down at me while I meditated.
These are the things I will miss
about you, but they are also the things that I will
remember as the best parts of you and what we shared