Summer Blues Our Message to Gracey after 8 Weeks

This entry is part 8 of 16 in the series Messages to Gracey








 We have the summer blues without you.

It is near the end of July and on this Sunday afternoon my heart broke all over again.  We were cleaning  the house and it was time to wash the Slankets.  It seemed like such a menial Bad Kitty tells kittens a storytask but when I picked them up I remembered how much you loved to snuggle on them and the wave of sorrow crashed over me. I hid in the office so your dad wouldn’t see me and I had a good cry.  Later when he saw me I told him that my red eyes were due to allergies.  He pursed his lips and nodded.

This first summer without you is also the first summer in four years that I am not heading out into the field.  I miss the adventure and learning at the Sea of Cortez,  in Kenya and in Namibia.  And to make matters worse, this is the first summer that the city didn’t open the swimming pool.  The best part of summer for me was being able to swim every morning. Fresh air, cool water and  a mile of meditation laps to start the day. But this summer, no field work, no swimming and worst of all no Gracey.

Annie and Eddie are both very sweet kittens and they sure have a lot of energy.  They make us laugh and force us to keep up with them and that is a good thing. We are so lucky that they rescued us.  Earlier today both kittens were in the office with me and they seemed to be fascinated with Bad Kitty.  I think he was telling them a story about you.

Maggie is trying to adjust to her new home but I get the feeling like me, she might think this is the worst summer ever.

Now that I have  felt sorry for myself, it is time to pick up and be productive.  Many people have so many big problems and mine are in many ways insignificant when I think of people without water, food, shelter, and those in poor health.  I need to remind myself this Sunday of all the things for which I am grateful.  It is a long list and one of the things on that list is the time that I got to spend with you.  We really loved every minute with you.

Later this afternoon when both kittens were asleep on the sofa with your dad, I looked around and this is what I saw.

Memory Gracey

You are always in my thoughts. I miss you so much.

 Evening has come and darkness is creeping in.  I watched a groundhog eating little green apples that fell off the tree.  He looked so happy it made me laugh.  Bossy Backyard Blue Jay was chatting up a storm to me when I took him his peanuts.  Your dad is always amazed that he stays put on the branch and chats with me.  I  like that he doesn’t fly away.

It will be time to lock up the sun room soon and I remember how you stomped your paw and didn’t want to come in when your dad declared the sun room closed for the night.  I used to let you stay out much later when he was out at a meeting or on his bowling night.  This room was built for you and it still hurts to sit there in the evening without you.

Your friend Carolyn sent us a Weeping Angel after we lost you.  We thought the perfect place for her was out in the sun room on the table.  At night the light comes on and glows a soft yellow as a gentle reminder of our little Gracey.  The inscription reads:

It broke our hearts to lose you.  You did not go alone.  For part of us went with you, the day God called you home.

Weeping Angel

Grief comes in waves. We need to ride it out.


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  1. I had to put my beloved Izzy cat to sleep last week. She had cancer, and the steroids weren’t working any more. I miss her so much. I have always enjoyed following you on Facebook and now I am re-reading your posts about losing your beloved Gracey. It helps me to deal with my own loss.

  2. Ingrid King says

    What a beautiful post, Joanne. There is nothing insignificant about grief – the fact that there are huge problems out in the world does not make your grief any less difficult. Never apologize for mourning your beautiful girl. I’m glad you have your new kittens, and Maggie, to provide feline love, but I also know that it’s not the same, and it never will be. Much love to you, Ingrid.

  3. I really loved hearing from Gracey and her cat causes! I can see how much you love her, and I am grieving about her and about our Maine Coon cat, Friday; it’s tough to lose these members of our family!

  4. Christine Johnston Dutton Beeh says

    I am gasping for air, reading this was so emotional. How we all loved Gracey, her antics and her thoughts, and while we all mourn for her greatly and our hearts are broken for not having her here on earth, surely none of us can feel the immense pain and absence you feel minute by minute. with undying love to you all.

    • Christine, I will make an effort to post a few more lighthearted things. Thank you for joining us on our journey. We all have experienced the loss of a loved one and I think that ties us all together. We know how hard it is.

  5. Laura Malone says

    This is also my first summer without my Firecracker and I find it hard some days even to come home but I adopted a kitten in May and there is Fancy they still need their momma

    • Laura, I am so sorry for your loss of Firecracker. It is super hard to come home some days isn’t it? But you are right, when we see Fancy and Annie, Eddie and Maggie it brightens our day and forces us to move forward.

  6. Vicki Cook says

    I remember how hard it was after I lost BJC. Luckily, Sugar had her kittens shortly afterward, which kept me distracted for a while. But nothing will ever replace her in my heart, and nothing will ever replace Gracey in yours. Sending you lots of love.

  7. I was so moved by your post. It is so hard to lose a beloved member of our family or friend. It will be a year next month I lost my beloved BearBear and I still cry for him. Big hugs.
    Sue B

    • Sue, so sorry for your loss of BearBear. I just don’t think we will ever fully recover from losing our loved ones. And maybe it is better that way. Our lives are forever changed

  8. Well, again I am awash in tears, this time while sitting in the coffee shop. But no one bothers to look much at the gray-haired, red-eyed lady in the corner, typing away on her laptop. Joanne, what a summer you have had. First, beloved Gracey and then your dear neighbor Marie. I have the same worries Marie had: Who would take Claude and Trixie if something happened to me? No one can ever love them as much as I do, or they already have a houseful of cats. I guess I just have to make sure nothing happens to me! Your tributes and updates are wonderful – your fans (and Gracey’s, of course!) really appreciate them. >^..^<

    • Sherri, I know what you mean about Claude and Trixie. Nobody could ever love them the way that you do. I felt that same way about Gracey. I worry that I am not able to give Maggie the love and attention that she had with Marie. We are just trying to do our best.

  9. Carol Glidden says

    I am so sorry for your loss. So many people knew & loved Gracey. Thank you for sharing her with us.

  10. Barbara McIntosh says

    So moving and such a lovely tribute to Gracey.

  11. Pam Anderson says

    You made me cry again. That inscription is so beautiful. Would it be okay for me to use that in Willie’s memorial garden? A landscaper is coming tomorrow and I’d like to honor my 22-year-old kitty that passed away on June 25, 2012 will a little flower garden. My heart still aches and I will always love and miss him.

    • Pam, isn’t that inscription just perfect? I didn’t write those words, they are on the angel that Carolyn sent us. That is perfect to us in a memorial flower garden for Willie. Sending you a hug. I don’t think our hearts will ever be the same.

  12. Retta Shanahan says

    I loved following Gracey’s journeys. I miss her, too. She is watching over you and sending you little messages of love.

  13. Your messages to Gracey are just beautiful. Having just lost my own fur baby Tara 2 weeks ago I know exactly what you’re going through. Hugs.

  14. Cindy Loohoo says

    Love and hugs for you today. Gracey is always watching over you.

  15. This is so moving and brought back wonderful memories of my cat and allowed me to share a few tears as well. Thank you for such a warm post.

  16. katboxjanitor says

    Oh my, you keep honoring the memory of Gracey so beautifully. And I have consumed another few kleenex. I am pleased to hear that Gracey’s outdoor ‘friends’ have remained and you continue to enjoy them…
    Annie, Eddie and maybe even Maggie are gaining wisdom from Bad Kitty.

  17. Amy Palmer says

    Tears are flowing here. Some are for you, some are for Maggie, some are for me, and some are for my friend who lost her basset hound a couple weeks ago. You’re right, there are bigger problems in the world, but right now, broken hearts are ours.

  18. Allison Colony says

    This is a lovely letter to Gracey – I know you both still really miss her, but she will always be in your hearts. As long as you remember all the fun times you had with her, she will never really be gone.

  19. Elaine H says

    Oh..This made me cry..You have such a beautiful way with words. I can feel your love for sweet Gracey. Thank you for sharing your story with all of us.