On December 8th, at 8:43 PM, my princess and best friend Ginger passed peacefully on to her next adventure. She was “my scruffer”, “the Ging” and “Queen of the Wet Noses” for about eighteen years of my life and my whole world turned upside down when she was first diagnosed with mammary cancer. There was some small hope that it might be benign, but that quickly proved inaccurate and I have lived every day for the past nine months marveling at the toughness, resiliency and tenacity of a cat who essentially amounts to my first born child in what I call a life. The world does not know what they lost today and I myself am utterly inconsolable.
A long time ago, one year after I got her, a routine checkup lead to a veterinarian telling me my cat had a virus called FIP and that I should expect no more than three years on this earth with Ginger before she died in misery; choking to death on thick mucus from her stomach. Until today, I have never felt as much emotional pain as I did that day and after hours of crying, I drew Ginger close to my chest and together we vowed that we were going to fucking beat this. That was seventeen years ago now that I check my records; I have in fact been very blessed and I say with no reservation whatsoever that I spent eighteen years of my life with the best damn cat that ever was.
There were several times in my life, where literally the only reason I had to keep living was the love of my cat Ginger; I don’t know if I’ll ever meet another friend like her – human, animal or otherwise.
Please excuse my absence for the next few days and for the previous few; as I’m sure you can understand, the deterioration of her condition this past week gave me some idea that this moment was coming in advance. I do not believe the grief will kill me and I will return to writing as soon as the hole in my heart doesn’t feel like it’s going to tear me apart.
Godspeed, my beautiful baby monkey princess.
- Nina Illingworth