I love the beginning of each seasonal change, but I especially love the fall. Nature’s transformation is always a reminder of how fortunate I am to live surrounded by such profound beauty, which always makes my gratitude list.  

This year, as the last of the beautiful leaves silently fell and thoughts of Thanksgiving took over, I found melancholia setting in—something that doesn’t usually happen until late winter. I focused on distractions and swept my feelings under the rug, which I’m notorious for but not necessarily something I recommend. I decided to finish my gratitude list for Thanksgiving because that is something positive to do, right? 

Family and friends made the top of the list with no trouble: health, a safe and comfortable home, financial stability, freedom—so much to be grateful for—I could go on and on. I sifted through good times and bad and found my melancholia emerging from under the rug.  I found myself thinking about how Jim (my husband) and I have overcome our most recent hardships and tragedies—we have both had more than our fair share over the last several years.

Inner strength, help from family and friends, the medical knowledge and care of our healthcare providers—everyone played a role in our success to heal and move forward. As I reached the bottom of the page, I listed our three beloved cats—our children—that we lost in the span of seven months right before the pandemic struck.

Lately, both Jim and I have found ourselves reminiscing over their quirky personalities. We have shared both funny and sad memories while sharing our cell phone photos. The root cause of my early melancholia became quite apparent.  

Our four-legged family members have all played a significant role in our success in overcoming life’s emotional hurdles. They are justly our unsung heroes. I revised my gratitude list, not because everything I had listed before had less significance, but because our dear companions, our only children, deserve our deepest gratitude for helping us endure life’s challenges.

During this week of giving thanks, I fill my list and heart with gratitude for our furry loved ones that have passed and those that continue to bring us abundant love, joy, and healing.

8 thoughts

  1. What a beautiful admission of gratitude and thankfulness. I love all the pictures and miss your furry friends as well and will take your lead and be thankful for my furry friends too. We love them with all our heart, don’t we? As well we should, but missing them is hard. I’m thankful for our friendship, Rosalie, and thankful you share that lovely Lemon with me here and there. She’s such a sweetheart. Happy Thanksgiving to you and Jim!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautiful post and beautiful thoughts. Somehow our animals know when we need them; some sort of sixth sense I suppose; ours have always been there for us, and never will we have another like any of them.

    They are each unique; people like me who grew up without pets may have once thought “it’s just a cat” or “it’s just a dog” but once you have pets that thought quickly passes, for they are as unique in their own ways as we are.

    Reading this brings back many memories that I will always cherish.

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  3. Oh, Rosalie, we lost 3 of our babies too (cats) within a 5 week period, just as the pandemic hit. The shock, horror, and tragedy I have yet to work through totally yet when the tears come, I let them fall and then I embrace my memories of my babies and rejoice for the love I had with them. These past couple of years have been the most difficult of my life, yet thorough it all, I have gained a confidence and strength I did not possess before. I am so grateful to be alive and for the family I do have today. I am surrounded by so much Love. Happy Thanksgiving!!! xo


    1. I am so terribly sorry to hear that you experienced a similar loss. It truly is devastating! We also continue to grieve—it’s a long and slow process. To go any faster would be emotionally impossible. Our furry babies are truly a special gift. It is a gift that teaches us so much during their time with us and long after they have left us. Happy Thanksgiving . Have a lovely holiday weekend. HugsXO

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Your pictures, Rosalie, brought tears to my eyes. As you, we consider our babies our family. We grieve at our own rates and you are right anything but would be impossible. You’ve got a special place in my heart. (((HUGS)))!! xo

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