Dedication to Hannah, by Brian Crawford
Hannah was as ornery as she was beautiful. You had to work to gain her affection. It took me about six months, but it was worth it. She was my girlfriend Amy's cat, and when I moved in, Hannah made it clear whose house it was.
Our black lab Chester was deathly afraid of her. When Hannah was perched in a doorway, as she often was, Chester wouldn't cross it. We could've dumped a truckload of tennis balls into the kitchen, and Chester would just stand there and whimper.
Hannah was a rescue cat who'd been through a lot. With her fiery personality and toughness, we just assumed she'd live forever. Then we found a host of tumors spanning her breast area. When the tumors were removed and biopsied, we learned that Hannah had an aggressive adenocarcinoma that had spread to her lymphatic system.
The oncologist told us Hannah probably had eight months to live – maybe twice that with chemo. We elected not to put her through chemo, and, in retrospect, we probably should've passed on the surgery as well. It didn't do anything except stress her out.
We only got two more months with Hannah. She passed away on election day. Her breathing got shallow and I took her to the vet. She died there on the vet's table before Amy could come say goodbye.
I'm sorry we didn't have more time with her, and I'm sorry she couldn't wait for Amy. But if you knew Hannah, it's the way you'd expect her to go out. More than anything, she hated being vulnerable. I think she just didn't want Amy to see her that way.
She died her own way, in her dramatic fashion. On my way out of the vet's I saw I'd gotten a parking ticket. I know Hannah was up there having the last laugh.
Even Chester seems to miss her. The first day without Hannah, I watched Chester approach the entrance to the kitchen, where Hannah so often stood guard. At the threshold, he paused and sniffed the air. Then I swear I saw him give a small bow, like someone entering a dojo, before going in. It's still Hannah's house.
We dedicate this page to Hannah, who touched so many.