We can attempt to teach the things that one might imagine the earth would teach us: silence, humility, holiness, connectedness, courtesy, beauty, celebration, giving, restoration, obligation and wildness.
David Orr from "Earth in Mind"

Feb 28, 2008

Bancha Aug 2002 - Feb 2008

We had to put Bancha to sleep yesterday. Although he was only 6 1/2 years old, he had Feline Leukemia which means he lived incredibly long. Up until the last month he had been healthy, but something happened and they think that he had a tumor. He was my first pet and felt more like a member of the family.

He was a unique cat, or so I am told, with a sense of humor and the intuit ability to know when I needed comfort. He was so gentle with Alder even when A would try to drag him places by the tail. He was my talisman keeping me safe from my own fears when Kevin worked nights.

This is the cat that opened doors by pulling them and never once knocked over a wine glass when he would wander the table looking for snacks after late night dinner parties. He was king of his alley even when he could not leave our yard. And when he did, and was bitten by a fox, he survived to live another year and a half. This was the kitten that would run in circles on the couch and launch himself into the picture window and fall in a heap only to get up and do it again five more times.

This is the cat that not only drove across the country to come to our wedding, but then followed us a mile up the road to join us that first night after we were married. And then drove back out here again in the u-haul with Kevin, only to be walloped by a neighbor cat the first day while we were unpacking (have you ever tried to keep a cat in while you unpack a moving van?

Kevin and I have often joked that it was really Bancha who was in charge of this family. We have both cried over this and are finding ways to mourn him. I don't think we will be getting any new pets soon.


paintergirl said...

I am so sorry for your loss. Sweet Bancha. You guys should have a little memorial for him.

The Grocer said...

Sorry to hear that Stacey. How about planting a tree that will produce "cat"kins every year.

Erin said...

Sorry to hear about your cat. That must be hard for you and your family. I still remember the day I put my first dog to sleep...it was one of the hardest of my life! Hang in there. I took a box of my dog's favorite toys, her collar, etc. and buried them under a Dogwood tree we planted. It was a comforting way to celebrate her life!

trish said...

oh i am so sad to hear about bancha. i know how heartbreaking it is to lose the pet that has become a member of the family. you are all in my thoughts.

**camera shy momma** said...

hugs to you all. i agree with planting something to celebrate his life. maybe catnip?

Wendy said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your kitty. I had a pretty remarkable Feline Leukemia positive cat, whom I lost many, many years ago. She had such an amazing personality. It took me a long time to think about having another pet, too.

Thank you for sharing this wonderful memorial to Bancha. He's sounds totally cool and one who obviously enriched your lives, as you enriched his ;).

Sarah said...

Hi Stace-
Bancha was an amazing guy, he really had a great personality. He was really really special. I'm so sorry that he's gone. I'm going to miss him.

Christy said...

I'm sorry about your kitty. It is so hard. I've put 1 cat and 2 dogs to sleep in the last 8 years. It isn't easy.