One of the things that any immigrant or global citizen experiences is missing being ‘there’ for all life events that happen with family and friends. And even if still living in one’s country of birth, the reality today is that many families are scattered around a country too. So being able to say ‘goodbye’ to a loved one in person before they pass on is not always possible. I missed the funerals of both grandmothers – very different yet equally remarkable women.
One also learns to let go of things… after all how much can one really cart around the world? The alternative is to litter storage boxes in various locations and, as the years pass, the likelihood of retrieving them grows less and less. I’ve managed to restrict myself to storage at primarily two locations – my parents and sister’s homes. I harbour a dream to own a house large enough to have a library and ship all my books to where ever that ‘dream home’ will be!
And pets? Yes some can make the transition and move with you. Whereas sometimes it just doesn’t make sense. Either the new place is filled with too many uncertainties or pets are attached to a place and its people – take away the people and at least the place remains to welcome new people.
That was the choice made with two beloved felines back in 2003… the guy who wanted to take over the house was happy to take it with our cats who had only ever known that home. The little guy (Shiku) passed on a few years ago and the gal (Mishka) this weekend.
The last few years Mishka has lived with my sister, her partner, kids and their other menagerie of pets. She had a good 16+ years, and with my sister a very loving home with the best of care. I knew when I spent time with her this summer, it would be the last. She was still as affectionate as ever however age had caught up and her time was coming soon.
So today when the news came, it was no surprise. I remember my Mishka, know she had a good life and I was fortunate enough to have that chance to say ‘goodbye’.