My letter of thanks to Frodo, a king among cats

My dearest Frodo,

When I first saw your picture online in 2003 in a rescue home, I knew you were part of our family. My heart recognized your soul and I understood that you were the furry best friend I was looking for. I called right now and asked about you, the blurry gray tabby kitten who had stopped my world on its tracks.

The shelter told me that you were only six weeks old but your mother was gone. So small and young to be so alone in a big world. I couldn’t leave you alone in a cage anymore. When the sun went down that day you were huddled in my arms, a sneezing and frightened kitten who had no idea where you were going.

But you were safe and loved and whether you understood it or not, your life would never be lonely again.

But we had to improve you first. The upper respiratory infection that made you sick almost took you away from us. However, you struggled through all those crusty eyes and snotty noses, you survived and grew from a fuzzy kitten to a healthy and respected gentleman.

Your tabby cat persuades hearts

Did you know, Frodo, that you converted the hearts of those who did not love cats? How many human friends have you made who commented on how cool a cat was or how they had no idea that cats could be that smart or kind. You dispelled the mean cat myth for everyone who knew you. In your own way as a gray tiger, you’ve influenced so many and taught them what cats are really about.

Your perfect tabby swirls and brushes so many of my tears.

And the velvety ears that you kept so meticulously clean stung my laughter so often.

Joy filled my ears again and again at your melodious and trumpeting meow.

You even broke barriers to becoming a kitten that can speak people’s language after learning the cat’s language. The first time you said, “I love you,” the love in my heart swelled to a cat so good that it overtook me all. I followed you around the house hoping to persuade you to say it again. And you’ve done it so many times in your 15 years that I couldn’t count anymore.

On my hardest days, when I first lost my father, your “I love you” kisses and sandpaper gave me the strength to weather the sadness. When the tragedy built up again and took my mother with her after two long years of illness, you stayed by my side and carried my burdens on your precious white paws.

The king falls ill

When you got sick, my heart couldn’t accept a world without you. I couldn’t stand it either that you felt sick or in pain. Of course, caring for you in your time of need was of the utmost importance. You deserve all of the love and support that I and the world can offer.

Together you and I fought against the diabetes that is ravaging your body. But three years and 15 years after I first saw your picture, your body was tired and it was time for you to leave. I held you tight when you see a rainbow bridge in the distance and your fur catches my tears one last time. And as much as it would have hurt you never to have hurt you, it would have been a far worse pain, a void that I would never understand.

They have guided me through the toughest parts of life with cat antics and proven that cats understand far more than we think. I thank you for that and for much more, Frodo, King of the Tabs. I will never find words deep enough to thank you for helping me in the moments when I felt orphaned after my parents passed away. As a kitten, you understood this feeling too. But we were never alone together.

My love and respect for you always, Frodo, the shabbiest angel!

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