I was having an especially rough day about a month after R passed away. I was working with other librarians in our school district at a small rural campus that the school district was closing. This was a K-2 campus so I was working with children’s books all day. Every time I saw a book that I remembered reading to my own children, my grief would be compounded thinking that when I took those children’s books that I had read to my kids and boxed up out of their boxes to read to my grandkids, R would not be there to share it with me. I had so many thoughts going through my mind on that day. My friend Claire took me outside to get some fresh air.
While standing there a cat walked by me and put its front paws on my legs for me to pet him. When he got back on all fours, I saw his paws and gasped!! He was a six toed cat. I had wanted a six toed cat for about a year. R and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary the year before. We went to Key West. While there we toured the Hemingway House. The property is full of decedents of the six toed cats that Ernest Hemingway loved. About that time, the principal walked by and said that she needed to find that cat a home. He had lived on their campus, but with it closing, he couldn’t stay there. I told her that I had to have him.
My son helped me pick him up and take him to our house. Hemingway never left our property. He was the most docile cat. And he, along with being six toed, was just a strange cat. He stared at me in a way that I’ve never experienced. He was just always a bit odd.
I read more into ordinary circumstances than a lot of people do. I have had odd things happen after losing R. Things for which there is no rational explanation. Hemingway finding me was just another odd occurrence in a long line of oddities.
R passed away on Dr. T’s late wife’s birthday. Hemingway passed away on Friday which was the 6th year anniversary of Dr. T’s late wife’s passing. There have been so many other odd “coincidences” of important dates. I don’t know what any of the things that have happened mean, but I know that it is just part of the woven tapestry that is my life. And, I know that I don’t believe in “coincidence.” There are just too many to ignore.
As my daughter told me. Hemingway served a huge purpose in my life. He brought me hope and joy just through his existence. I have moved forward ( not moved on… I’ll never move on) and I am very happy in my new life. He served his purpose and now he is gone. I am so thankful that I had him in my life!!
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