Fangie, Zichrono L’Bracha

The Kaddish is the Jewish mourner’s prayer, following the death of a family member.  It’s recited in the presence of the congregation.

So let me say Kaddish for dear Fangie, member of this family, in your presence.  You, my blog-friends, my congregation.  You, who have flooded me with your condolences.  I am overwhelmed.

I would surely drown in an ocean of grief.  Or my old stand-by strategy would kick in, and I’d be numb.

But with your help, I’m buoyed.  I see:  You and I share in this ocean of grief.  All who love, we know these dark waters.  In the midst of life, we are in death.  We will lose the ones we love.

So let me say Kaddish for Fangie in your presence.

The theme of the Kaddish is that despite the loss, the mourner still praises life.  Another way of this praising is, when you say the name of the departed, you say “Fangie, zichrono l’bracha.”  This means “Fangie, remembering him is a blessing.”

Let me sanctify his memory, then.  One day after his terrible but mercifully quick death, today let me praise his living.  Let me praise the beneficent grace that brought Bugsy and me the honor to become close to the spirit that was our Fangie.

We had only seven months together, and then our beautiful little boy was taken.

Fangie the clown.  The goof-ball.  Recently he’d taken to flopping sideways on the floor, making eye contact with me, and flipping from side to side waving his paws in the air, looking back up at me, and so clearly speaking, in his unbelievably high little voice:  C’mon mom, let’s play.  I started to call him Squeaky.

Only three days before he died, he started making biscuits on my belly.

So we were working on a great love.

We have not lost that love.  I have heard those of you, who have gone before me into these dark waters, say this many times:  We never forget.  Never.

So this love that I hold, for this wonderful cat, this love will not die.

When Fangie first came here – when we first welcomed him into our family – he was extravagant with contact.  That’s why I called him “Duvay.”  During the acclimation-time and quarantine, every time I went into Base Camp he would jump up on me and just cover me right up.  Sprawl all over me, cover me right up.  Like a down comforter.  His fur – all of him – was so soft and silky and warm.

Then he’d bite me on the nose.  This was Fang we’re talking about, after all.

Later, he’d do the duvet bit less often when, I think, he became surer of his welcome.  He’d still do it, from time to time – but it wouldn’t last long.  He’d need to be up and running at top speed, off to find the next adventure to create for himself. To see what other thing he could get into or knock over or chew on.

Bugs did his best to keep Fangie in line, but it was a full-time job.

This morning I spoke to the vet who treated Fang in the beginning, when he was came to us so sick.  She said there are very few things that would take a young cat so suddenly.  A heart defect – but that would have been painless.  So she ruled that out.

She ended up agreeing with the homeopathic vet whom I called right after.  Both vets think the most likely suspect was something Fang came here with.  This vet said probably heartworm.  She said heartworm is very hard to detect, and even one worm will kill.  Fangie was really very sick, for a substantial portion of his young life.  Perhaps he had this.

I was afraid it had been the poisonous insects we have here.  The vet thought that was a possibility.  She just heard of a poodle who had been stung by a wasp and very nearly died.  Cats are more sensitive than even that.  Possibly Fang had eaten or been bit by a brown recluse or black widow spider.

The vet ruled out tick-borne illnesses like bobcat fever, as Fangie was an inside cat.  She said he could have been poisoned if he’d eaten a mouse that had eaten mouse-bait – but that hadn’t happened to my knowledge.  I neither keep nor use any poisons anywhere in this house and nor do my neighbors (again to my knowledge).  I got rid of all my plants.  Yesterday I went through the house again and I could find nothing.

So there it is.

We had our time together, we were happy, and then it was time for our darling boy to go.

I cannot possibly be happy about his brutal taking.  My heart is broken right now.

But I am glad, in the midst of this terrible grief, that we had our time.  I am so glad for that.  I will always, always sanctify and cherish the memory of my dearest Fang.

Fanga Duvay, zichrono l’bracha.

About nadbugs

Anita loves cats. This must be because she, too, has had nine lives. She’s been dancing since she could walk, she was a commercial artist and advertising producer, she earned a third-degree black belt in Aikido, she is a drummer with the Afrique Aya Dance Company, she is an attorney, and she’s a meditator and a devoted student of Nonviolent Communication. She also spent one lifetime sidelined with a devastating back injury in 1992. Since then – FELDENKRAIS METHOD® to the rescue. The FELDENKRAIS METHOD is all about dreaming concretely – thinking intelligently and independently by way of a gracious and kind physicality. The work affords all who study it a process by which to reach, with movement, into the mind and the heart, to make nine lives into one whole being.
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29 Responses to Fangie, Zichrono L’Bracha

  1. We are so sorry to hear about Fangie, we are sorry we never had the chance to meet him. We know you loved him very much and we send our purrs to you at this sad time.

    Harry, Dexter and Tipp

  2. Dianda says:

    Atleast you created loving and wonderful memories with Fangie. He did with all of us, at least for me! I always looked forward to bugs and Fangies adventuries, and always hoping so strong he was doing better if he was a bit sick. He will never be forgotten! And I am very happy I got to meet Fangie through this blog. 🙂
    I hope you’ll be feeling better in time. Ill be thinking about you!

  3. Fangie, zichrono l’bracha!
    You gave him a beautiful life, Anita. So full and rich. So much excitement and love.
    Blessings as you and Bugs and Fangie move on.
    Fangie, zichrono l’bracha.

    Love and Hugs

  4. At home, every moment I pass by the flowers that I bought for the picture I sent you, I remember you and Fangie, I send you love and virtual hugs. It was such a delight having ‘met’ Fang through the internet. Like Dianda said above, I felt like he was part of my life too. Countless times I mentioned your stories to my husband. So he will surely be missed. I loved to follow his stories all these 7 months, as I’m sure I’ll keep loving whatever else you want to share with us. I’m part of your congregation! So, in respect, I too say: Fang, zichrono l’bracha.

  5. Got your message and will follow-up. In the meantime sending (((hugs)))

  6. If I were nearby, I would come for a shiva visit. I would bring you something round and nourishing to eat. I would honor the divine spark of Fangie at the ner daluk. Hoping you can forgive my lack of knowledge about such matters. May it be of comfort knowing your congregation is here — encircling the globe — with you.
    Fangie, zichrono l’bracha.

  7. FeyGirl says:

    What beautiful words for an equally beautiful spirit… And as you say — how wonderful it is that you knew this bright little soul, but also that he knew you.

  8. Connie says:

    Oh how my heart breaks for you. An ocean of time would never be enough but to be taken so young. But the time you had together was a blessing for both of you. You knew the love and joy of this sweet boy, and he knew the love and joy of you and being in a home. May time bring the sweetness back and fade the pain of all the wonderful memories you have together.

  9. Anya says:

    Fang, zichrono l’bracha. That last picture is so lovely. ((hug)).

  10. looloo says:

    I still can’t believe our beloved Fangie is not among us anymore!

    I thought of something I heard at funerals I attended, the priest said ” to love is to take a risk, the risk of loosing the one you love”; I never forgot this, I think Fangie, with his own personality and with what he was to you, made you at the same time, you are not the same person since you have known this adorable kitten, even if he’s not there anymore, he has brought you something and changed your life. I miss him, Nadbugs! I don’t dare imagine how YOU feel. Hugs to you and Bugs!


  11. Fangie, Zichrono L’Bracha
    My heart is broken for you too. It’s still such a shock. I’m glady you had him though, glad you gave him love and a forever home. I just wish his forever had been longer.

  12. Oh wow, NO! We just heard. We are so so sorry.

    Sending comforting purrrrrrrrs and gentle headbutttss to Bugs & Nadbugs.

  13. CATachresis says:

    Have been thinking about you and Bugsy all day. That is so poignant. I too want to say, Fangie, zichrono l’bracha.

    I think I started following your blog around the time you first got him and you blogged about the trials and joys of those first weeks. Because your writing is so eloquent and expressive, we also felt part of the process of his and your coming together as a family. And now we feel your loss. I think you made his last seven months the happiest and yes, they were meant to be. xx

  14. If only every tear that each one of us sheds for sweet Fangie could lessen your sorrow.

  15. Terri says:

    We are so sad to hear about Fangie. He was a handsome cat. Purrs and hugs from our house to yours.

  16. lahgitana says:

    Thank you for sharing Fangie with us, Anita.

    I’m thinking of you … and wishing just what Daisy the Curly Cat said–that all my tears could ease your broken heart. Skritch Bugsy for me….

  17. Wazeau says:

    Thinking of you and sending my heartfelt sympathy. Remember the good, the love, let the pain go in its time.

  18. This is the best way of all to mourn, I think…remember the love.
    We love you, and remember with you.

  19. This is so beautiful and a wonderful tribute to Fangie.
    Fangie had chosen you very well, I believe.
    Warm thoughts and purrs.

  20. Pingback: Fly Free Fangie « Texas, a cat in New York

  21. Flo says:

    I’m so sorry to hear about your beautiful Fangie. 😦 What a lovely tribute.

  22. Fangie, zichrono l’bracha.

    May you be very happy and healthy at the rainbow bridge

  23. wheezyrider says:

    I’m so sorry for your loss. What a beautiful post.

  24. misswhiplash says:

    I am so sorry for your loss…I know full well how it hurts, but we shall meet again those that we love and whilst he is in your heart he will never be forgotten

  25. eripanwkevin says:

    I’m very sorry for your loss…….please rest in peace, Fang.

  26. I only just found your bloggy because of Texas. I am so sad to have my discovery related to your crushing loss of Fangie. His life was short, but your love for him and his for you was deep and long. My healing puuurrrrrssss are sent you and Bugsey. Paw pats Savannah

  27. i’m incredibly sorry for your loss- i too have lost a cat suddenly, and very young- it’s a pain that is inexplicable, because not only does the loss hurt, the thought of your time together that is now gone hurts even more. my condolences, dear, Fang is now an angel, and never gone.

  28. Pingback: A Thousand Words For Reindeer | catself

  29. Pingback: Fangie Remembrance Day | catself

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