As I dipped a teabag into the mug of boiling water, I thought to myself, I need to check on Lexington. While holding my cup of tea, I walked into the bedroom and stood there dumbfounded for a moment. The bed was empty. Then I realized that my mind cleverly tricked itself into forgetting, for a few moments, that Lexington is no longer here; that his spirit was set free from his ailing body. It’s amazing what the mind can do to protect the grieving heart.
My little lion lost his battle with cancer the afternoon of December 10, 2019, and man, did he ever fight the battle, even up to the moment that Dr. Julie of Home Pet Euthanasia of Southern California arrived at the front gate. During the hours before Dr. Julie arrived, Lexington, stubbornly insisted on continuing his normal activities. He wobbled to the front door indicating that he wanted to go outside. “Anything you want, sweetie,” I told him as I opened the door. I picked him up and walked onto the grass and laid him down in the newly grown lemon clovers where he used to love to lounge. I lay next to him, with tears coming down my face, yet smiling to see him finding some joy despite his withered and sickly condition.
I brought him inside where he lay on the area rug in the living room, yet, after a few minutes, he got himself in a standing position and slowly walked to the front door, insisting, once again on going outside. I opened the front door and Lexington continued his wobbly walk down the walk way to the birdbath, me trailing behind him, ready to lend a hand. But on his own he sauntered on up to his favorite watering hole and took a few licks of water, just as Dr. Julie arrived at the front gate. I explained to her that despite his seemingly active behavior, he was ready. Over the past few days he’d become listless. The day before he’d lost all interest in food, except for some bites of baked chicken that evening of which his tummy rejected at 1:00 a.m. I was up most the night with him; it was very clear, his little body was shutting down. Dr. Julie explained it’s common with animals and humans that as we become aware of our impending death, our survival instincts, our will-to-live kicks in.
I picked up Lexington and held him gently, yet tightly into my chest. We walked into the cottage, I placed him on the bed from where he would depart with me and Bobcat by his side.
It’s been not quite a week since Lexington’s departure. I’m not yet accustomed to his absence, which is profound right now, despite having Bobcat lovingly by my side. We were tight, me and Lex. We had a bond from the moment I met him at the adoption center back in March of 2006. I suspect I will not adapt to his absence anytime soon, but relief that he’s not suffering consoles me.
In loving memory of Lexington, a.k.a Lex, Lexi, Big Lex, Little Lion and Prince Lexington
Thank you to my dear friends and family for your kind and loving support.
I couldn’t do this grieving thing without you…