Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Loving Ling Ling

Hello, Dear Friends, it is with a heavy heart 
that I tell you that Sorrow has knocked upon 
our door once again, and we have lost 
our sweet Siamese, Ling Ling. 

We had been treating her for what we thought
was an inner-ear infection, 
when it became clear over the New Year's holiday
that it was much more serious. 

She had become increasingly disoriented
over the last two weeks- 
 stumbling and circling, 
eventually this past weekend, unable to get up at all.

We gave up New Year's plans to stay by her side
and a very compassionate, local Veterinarian,
Dr. Robin Gardner, and her dear husband, 
drove all the way out to our home 
 to assess the situation, but it was determined that 
our dear Ling Ling had a possible neurological event,
and was ready to cross that Rainbow Bridge. 

So, on a cold and snowy night, held 
tightly in my arms, we said goodbye 
to our sweet Ling Ling and summoned 
the Angels to assist her on her way. 

Ling Ling came into our lives under sad circumstances,
but brought so much love and joy along with her. 
She was my Parent's beloved cat, 
and when my Mother passed away in 2011, 
she came here to live with us. 

I wrote a short story about her for my
Newspaper column back in 2011, and due to scheduling changes,
it was never published, but I will share it
with you now.

When my Father finally had to go to live in the nursing home after battling Alzheimer’s disease for years, my Mother was left alone to live in the home that she and my Father had built together. They were married for 58 years and rarely spent a night apart. The Siamese cat that my Father loved became my Mother’s comfort and loyal companion. Even though Mom had five daughters willing to help, she wanted to remain independent as long as possible. When I would arrive to help her clean the house, or to take her to Dr. appointments, visits to my Father, or errands, I would always find her sitting in her special chair, her faithful companion in her lap.  She confided in me that if it wasn’t for Ling Ling, she didn’t know how she would have made it through the long, lonely nights without my Dad.
Mom’s health began to decline soon after Dad’s move to the nursing home. She had heart disease and diabetes and it was clear that both diseases were taking its toll on my frail 75 year old Mother. After a series of hospital stays due to her progressive heart condition, it was decided that she should be moved to a nursing home for some rehabilitation and to stabilize her condition. She was able to move into the same room as my Dad, something she was looking forward to, as she missed him so. But she worried about her precious kitty, and it was decided that I would take Ling Ling home with me and my husband during her stay.
Ling Ling would be joining a full house, as I already had two cats, two dogs and one cockatiel. At first, she was frightened and wouldn’t come downstairs. For weeks she stayed upstairs in the bedrooms of our empty nest. We let her be, as we had so much on our minds, attending to my Mother’s rapidly declining health, my Father’s Alzheimer’s and the many decisions and heart ache of facing the possibility that my parents would never come home again.  I had many heartfelt conversations with my Mother during that time and it was then that she made me promise that I would take care of her beloved Ling Ling, should she not be able to come home again.
After being in the nursing home for several weeks, it was clear that my Mother would need heart  surgery. After the surgery, she desperately wanted to come home. So it was agreed, we would bring her home and divide her care among all of us. Her precious cat was brought back home to bring her comfort. But after only one week, my Dear Mother passed away in the home she loved, her beloved Ling Ling by her side.
After that terrible day, I went back to my parent’s empty house to bring Ling Ling home with me. My heart was broken and so was hers.
During the next few weeks, Ling Ling and I sought each other out. I knew how much this small bundle of fur was grieving. I could see it in her sad blue eyes and drooping tail. We had suffered the loss of someone we loved very much. Through our grief, we formed a close bond. I could see why my Mother loved her so. She was gentle and sweet, with loving, knowing eyes. I could feel my Mother looking down with happiness whenever we were together. And like my Mother and my Father before her, I fell in love with this sweet little bundle of comfort.

It has been a year now, since my Mother’s passing. Our grief has softened around the edges a little bit. Ling Ling is part of the family now. But she will always hold a special place in my heart, because we share in common, a love like no other. 


Now we say goodbye to this special little soul
who brought so much comfort and joy into our lives.

I know my dear Parents are there to meet her
at the Rainbow Bridge.

We will miss you, dear Ling Ling.

We loved you so.


  1. Oh Karen, I'm so sorry to hear this. There is no doubt this dear little soul had a purpose in life and she fulfilled it well. She was a very lucky cat to have been so loved, not only once but twice in her lifetime. And when I look at her face I can see it was well deserved. I believe she is now with your mom and dad, once again living in the lap of luxury. Rest in Peace, Ling Ling. xo

  2. So very sorry for your loss Karen. It is always so difficult losing our fur pets... big hugs to you!!


  3. I'm sorry for the loss of Ling Ling, Karen. What a sweet companion she has been.

  4. Oh how sad for you, I'm sorry for your loss. She was a wonderful companion to all of you.

  5. Dear Karen, my friend, I feel so sorry for your loss!
    She really was such a beuatiful and lovely fellow!
    Hugs and Love to you,
    Claudia xo

  6. I feel so sorry for your loss Karen. No more words -only hugs ❤︎

  7. oh sis so sorry about ling ling its never easy saying goodbye to our furry lil friends ... my heart goes out to you and dennis im sure your mom and dad were there watching her cross that big beautiful rainbow bridge xxoo

  8. When someone shares the experience of losing a pet there is a sad little clutch at my heart. Those of us who love animals continually leave ourselves open to their eventual passing.
    Your Ling Ling is so like my beloved Eggnog, who died two years ago at the age of 15. We miss the presence of these dear creatures for a very long time.

  9. Oh dear, so sorry to hear the news. It sounds like Ling Ling was a great friend to you all.x

  10. Oh how I hate these sad times in our lives when we loose a beloved pet as precious as Ling Ling
    Like my sister always tells me you gave that cat a very good life and I'm sure Ling Ling had a very good life with you.
    I know pets do grieve the death of their owners and other pets in the home also.

  11. Dear, dear Karen ~ I am so sorry for the lost of your sweet Ling Ling. She brought so much love to your whole family. It is always heartbreaking to lose our animal friends.

    Love and hugs to you ~ FlowerLady

  12. Oh Karen, your story made me shed a tear as well, for you for Ling Ling and for your mum! Sending big hugs to you my friend xoxox

  13. That is so sad Karen. I can't help but think that Ling Ling will now be telling your mum all about her adventures while living with you. I am so so sorry to read this and sending hugs across the pond to you. xx

  14. I'm so very sorry to hear this sad news. I hope you draw comfort from the fact that Ling Ling was surrounded by love through out her life on earth. She has now been reunited with your Mother at the rainbow bridge.

    Wishing you peace and comfort during this sad time for you and your family.

    Marilyn (in Dallas)

  15. Oh no! It is so sad to lose a beloved kitty and just as hard to hear of a loss too. What a beautiful cat and a beautiful story to go with her. I thought I would never get over losing my Miss Kitty but my memories of her over 16 years has helped. So sorry you have to bear the loss of your Mom and now her kitty. xoxo

  16. I'm so sorry to hear about your beloved Ling Ling's passing, Karen. I know she brought much comfort to you, and now she is with your parents. Your story about her was a beautiful one, and I'm thankful that we could read it. My prayers and thoughts are with you as you deal with another Sorrow in your life. Love and God bless you.

  17. Sending you a hug and know that you are in my thoughts. Since condolences of another sad loss.

  18. Oh how horribly sad for you, Karen. Such a beautiful story of how your precious Ling Ling came to live with you. Sending you hugs. Xx

  19. Oh Karen, I'm so sorry to hear of the loss of Ling Ling! She seems to have been a blessing to all she encountered!

  20. We have also helped one of our kitties move to the Rainbow Bridge less than a month ago. Our pets are so important to us, and when they die, we grieve terribly. Best wishes to you as you mourn.

  21. You are the best writer Karen...I could almost feel Ling Ling in my lap.
    You certainly have had your share of sadness the last little while.
    Let's hope this is it, for a very long time.
    So sorry....


  22. Karen, what a beautiful article you wrote about the special relationship between Ling Ling and your mother and you. I am so sorry for your loss and I pray that your heart would be comforted with lovely memories of such a precious little soul.

  23. Oh Karen, I am so sorry for your loss. The article you wrote was so touching...I hope when Ling Ling crossed the rainbow bridge, your sweet mother was waiting for her. Sending prayers for peace and comfort...xoxo

  24. so sorry for your loss Karen, I am sure it was so reassuring to your mother that she knew her little baby would be taken care of by her loving daughter. I am glad you had each other after the loss of your mother, sending you hugs my friend as you grieve

  25. Karen, I'm so sorry to hear about your Ling Ling. She sounds like such a loyal companion to you and your mom. The story of how Ling Ling came into your life was special, and that was great of you to take her into your home after your mom passed away. Sending loving thoughts and comfort during this sad time.


  26. Karen
    I am so sorry, It is never easy....I am sending you a giant hug ...

  27. It saddens me to read this. My cats are both getting up in age and have given me so much comfort since the death of my husband 4 years ago. I do not look forward to either passing.

  28. I'm at a loss for words. After reading your touching story, I can see why Ling Ling meant so much to you. It is so hard to lose a beloved pet as they are truly part of our family. I know your heart is sad. Sending you hugs, Pat

  29. I'm so sorry, Karen. Losing a pet is so heart breaking. Ling Ling was very fortunate to have your love.

  30. So sorry to hear this. My condolences.

  31. I remember reading Ling Ling's story and I loved seeing her popping in so many of your pictures. I'm so sorry for your loss and I hope in time you'll find comfort in remembering the many happy memories you've created with Ling Ling. Thinking of you.

  32. Thanks for sharing Ling Ling with us through your posts, Karen. I am so glad you and your family were there to care for her so well, and that she was such a loving pet. Sending you caring hugs xx

  33. Karen, sadly somehow I messed up my WP template and can not fix it (I tried everything!) and I'm just frustrated with WP so I'm back to blogger (withtwigsandbranches). (please feel free to delete this comment) {{HUGS}}

  34. So very sorry to read this Karen ...
    Ling Ling, such a very sweet companion, she will be missed.

    I know you will gain comfort in the many photographs and good memories.

    All the best Jan

  35. My heartfelt condolences on the loss of your sweet Ling Ling. Reading her story brought tears to my eyes. Having recently lost a beloved kitty I know how hard it is to have to say good-bye to them. The Rainbow Bridge welcomed home a sweet soul for sure. Hugs to you and your family as you grieve.

  36. Hello Karen, oh I'm so sorry for your loss of your cat! :(

    I do wish you a Happy and Healthy New Year though. Take care and you will be in my prayers.

    Hugs, Julie

  37. I just now reading this post of the passing of Ling-Ling..I'm so sorry, sweet friend. Losing a pet is so heart breaking - I know I have lost two..I'll be thinking of you..

  38. Dearest Karen,
    So sorry for this sweet baby of yours. Ling Ling was very special and yes, animals do grief! At present we have a friend who lost her husband suddenly because of a fatal heart attack. Their two doggies, the eldest being 9 years, is barking and sitting at the door, waiting for her Daddy to come home. She sat next to him or in his lap for 9 years.
    It saddens her even more because of this... Don't know how long they will keep up with this. Our Barty did hide outside when he lost his elder brother by adoption... For 3 months he did not come inside, only for his meals. But the love he got from that 'brother' was like a parent protecting him and washing him when we brought him home as a kitten from the humane society. Oh and there are different characters in pets; just like humans.
    Loved your story as it did convey so much... Human loneliness and a special bond of comfort that only such loyal pets can give.
    Blessings to you!


Thank you for stopping by! Your comments are important to me and are very much appreciated. xx Karen

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