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RIP Buddy the Miracle Cat

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  • RIP Buddy the Miracle Cat

    Sad post from JMS. His cat Buddy has passed away after an illness.

    For fifteen years Buddy was my best pal…my muse and my friend, the inspiration for Mystery in The Book of Lost Souls, a source of constant amusement and great affection for someone who has always had a hard time expressing those things.

    And now he is gone.

    And I will miss him terribly.
    Our deepest condolences on this loss. The story of how JMS originally rescued Buddy can be found here.

    Last edited by Jan; 11-11-2018, 03:15 AM.
    "Fascism always comes in quietly, holding a flag in one hand and a holy book in the other, inching its way in. The bugles and drums only sound after they've already taken over and believe it's too late to do anything about it." JMS Twitter Dec. 24, 2017

  • #2
    Some other Buddy stories (in no particular order).

    Where JMS let us know he's keeping Buddy:
    http://jmsnews.com/msg.aspx?id=1-4373

    Buddy and the packing peanuts:
    http://jmsnews.com/msg.aspx?id=1-4321

    Buddy trick:
    http://jmsnews.com/msg.aspx?id=1-4095

    Buddy the shark:
    http://jmsnews.com/msg.aspx?id=1-4232
    "Fascism always comes in quietly, holding a flag in one hand and a holy book in the other, inching its way in. The bugles and drums only sound after they've already taken over and believe it's too late to do anything about it." JMS Twitter Dec. 24, 2017

    Comment


    • #3
      WOW!!!!! Sad news indeed.
      Susan Ivanova, "I'll be in the car."

      Comment


      • #4
        Very sad.
        And this clears up his sudden silence on twitter.

        B5-Stefan


        --
        Lorien: "Only those whose lives are brief can imagine that love is eternal."

        Comment


        • #5
          A sad story, indeed, and sharing the grief is just - devastating.

          The story he tells so human.
          Jan from Denmark

          My blog :

          http://www.babylonlurker.dk

          "Our thoughts form the Universe - they *always* matter"

          Comment


          • #6
            I don't usually do this but this once I'm going to post JMS' entire buddy story from last night:

            J. Michael Straczynski - Hang with JMS
            15 hrs

            It’s funny how tears can come unnoticed. I’ll be sitting at my desk, working, or at least trying to work, then I’ll brush my hand against my cheek and find them. They just sort of leak out, all day, all night. Have been for a while now. They’re not the raging torrent that came twelve days ago with rage and sorrow and loss, but still: they come.

            Some of you have noticed that I have not been posting much the last few months, and nothing at all in almost two weeks. There is a reason.

            A tick over two months ago, my cat Buddy, who has been my dearest companion and pal for over fifteen years, was struck by kidney failure. I should’ve seen the signs coming, but I didn’t. He was drinking more water than usual, but since he never drank enough to begin with I was happy to see it. I thought he’d finally figured out what water was for. Should’ve noticed that he was spending more time sleeping, but it was summer, the house was warm, and at fifteen he was semi-retired. Given what came later I don’t know if figuring it out earlier would have made a difference…I actually might have ended up seeing him go even earlier…but the guilt remains. Don’t reassure me on this point; you’ll just piss me off.

            I brought him in when he stopped eating, and they said his kidney values were so high that they were literally off the scale; the technicians had to water them down before the equipment could even read the numbers. They said nothing could be done, that he had at most weeks left.

            I don’t believe in “nothing can be done” and quickly learned that it was possible to get a kidney transplant that would reset his values to normal and potentially give him another few years of life. The trick was keeping him alive long enough for that to happen.

            Dialysis would help, but the only vet in LA that did pet dialysis was on paternity leave, so with my assistant we brought him down to UC Davis for treatment…only to have the doctors find possible kidney cancer. If there’s cancer, there’s no transplant. Buddy was in the hospital for weeks, not on dialysis but on fluids that helped sustain his kidney values, as they went back and forth, is it or isn’t it? They finally concluded that it wasn’t.

            I brought Buddy home for what I thought would be a few days rest before taking him down for dialysis, but he was terribly weak. I would pick him up, put him down, and wherever I placed him, that’s where he’d stay. At one point, too exhausted and weak to make it to the litter box, he peed all over himself. I cleaned him up and brought him to bed. He was sleeping a lot. Too much. In his eyes he kept saying goodbye.

            But I was determine to give him every chance to fight for his life.

            The LA doctor having returned, we put him on dialysis and began doing everything necessary to ditch an infection and sustain him until an opening came up for the transplant. He began looking better, stronger, was sometimes even feisty. When I came to visit, despite being in hospitals now for weeks, he would eagerly walk around the examining room, even trying to jump up on things. His eyes were clear, his will stronger. The thought was there in both of us: we can do this.

            When the infection cleared, we went to phase two. For the transplant to take, his immune system would have to be permanently suppressed or risk rejection. But the doctors said there was risk to this, because if he had any underlying conditions, anything hidden that we didn’t know, they would blast out at us once his immune system was shut down. If there were any such issues, they’d strike out fast.

            We started him on the immunosuppressants. A day passed. Another. No problems. H was taking it like a champ.

            We set dates for the transplant, and investigated the best possible air transport. I allowed a moment of hope after almost two months of worry.

            Around the last week of October, his blood tests showed that he still wasn’t completely immune suppressed, only about ninety percent. The process had to be complete before transplantation, so they raised the dosage slightly.

            By the weekend of the 27th, he was fully immune suppressed. He seemed to be taking it like a champ. I visited him again in the hospital. He was strong, the strongest he’d been in almost two months. We were going to do this. We were going to fix him. He was going to make it. We were on the eve of success.

            The crash came on Monday as his system started to break down. Hidden, underlying conditions that had gone previously undiagnosed began to tear him apart from the inside, striking his heart, gall bladder, and pancreas. He went diabetic overnight. Fluids seeped into his chest. His heart fluttered.

            The doctors worked to try to fix the problems, fearing that this would put out of the running for a transplant.

            On Tuesday the 30th they told me to get down there fast. He didn’t have much time.

            I raced down to the hospital, knowing what had to be done. When they brought him in he was gasping for air, each breath a spasm…two quick breaths then a long hurrrr as the air went back out. I’ll never forget the sound. I’d wanted to have just a little time with him, just twenty minutes, to tell him what he meant to me, and how much I would miss him, and that he wasn’t alone in the dark, that I was right there with him. But he was in too much distress, too much pain and discomfort, it wasn’t right to prolong that a minute longer. And I wasn’t even sure he knew I was there, his gaze fixed at a place somewhere outside the walls, fighting the pain.

            So I held him as we said goodbye. One injection to stop the pain, another to stop the heart. Just as the second needle went into the IV his head tilted back and for the first time his eyes met mine, clear and calm, saying: I see you, I know you’re here, and I’m not afraid.

            And then he was gone.

            In movies I’ve seen actors portraying grief sobbing and falling down, crying out in the soul’s deepest agony. I always thought that was just an acting thing.

            I was wrong.

            So, so wrong.

            I spent a week just crying. Every time I saw something of his, I would lose it. During the two nights he was back in the house, he slept at the head of the bed, not his usual place at the foot, and I would put my hand under him so he knew I was there. Every night I fell asleep with my hand under the pillow. Pretending, just for a little while. Just in case he might come back.

            For a while I thought I might have to cancel the SAM talk in San Diego, and told them why. In the end I forced myself to go but warned them not to bring it up before my talk or I wouldn’t be able to do it. I told my assistant to clear out everything Buddy used, but leave in place anything with his picture. I was okay with being reminded he’d been here; I didn’t want to be reminded that he was gone.

            I got through by closing off everything personal and just staying with the program. When asked personal questions about music or the like, I went vague, couldn’t answer. The door was closed.

            For those who were there: I meant to come to the mixer afterward, but when I went out to check emails I was going through photos I’d taken earlier and hit a video of Buddy sleeping. And I lost it. He was right there, on the other side of the glass. I couldn’t understand why I couldn’t just reach through and take him home.

            I bailed on the mixer. I wish I could’ve done it. Couldn’t.

            When I returned Sunday, I was doing a little better, until I found a box on the porch bench with his ashes…he had been waiting in the cold and the dark for me. And it was I the moment he went away all over again.

            I brought them my cat, and they gave me back a box with his name on it.

            But he’s home now, in a place of honor commemorating the friend and warrior he was. And I’m at my desk working again, writing again. And the tears come, quietly and often unnoticed, because they have nowhere else to go. In time they will slow, and stop, and that will be a better day in some ways, and a much worse one in others, because I will have accepted his absence.

            So those who asked where I’ve been and why I’ve been there, that’s the reason. I will try to work my way up to posting regularly as soon as I can.

            For fifteen years Buddy was my best pal…my muse and my friend, the inspiration for Mystery in The Book of Lost Souls, a source of constant amusement and great affection for someone who has always had a hard time expressing those things.

            And now he is gone.

            And I will miss him terribly.
            "Fascism always comes in quietly, holding a flag in one hand and a holy book in the other, inching its way in. The bugles and drums only sound after they've already taken over and believe it's too late to do anything about it." JMS Twitter Dec. 24, 2017

            Comment


            • #7
              I am re-posting here the response that I posted on FB to JMS' post. I do so because it's one of the most eloquent and positive summations of death and grief I have come across in recent times. Nick Cave (the musician / singer / writer) is doing a rolling mailing list / exchange with fans where they can ask questions and he answers one a week. He lost his teenage son some two years ago in a tragic accident and has clearly been working through some of that via his music. Here is the exchange:


              Question:

              I have experienced the death of my father, my sister, and my first love in the past few years and feel that I have some communication with them, mostly through dreams. They are helping me. Are you and Susie feeling that your son Arthur is with you and communicating in some way?

              CYNTHIA, SHELBURNE FALLS, VT, USA

              Dear Cynthia,

              This is a very beautiful question and I am grateful that you have asked it. It seems to me, that if we love, we grieve. That's the deal. That’s the pact. Grief and love are forever intertwined. Grief is the terrible reminder of the depths of our love and, like love, grief is non-negotiable. There is a vastness to grief that overwhelms our minuscule selves. We are tiny, trembling clusters of atoms subsumed within grief’s awesome presence. It occupies the core of our being and extends through our fingers to the limits of the universe. Within that whirling gyre all manner of madnesses exist; ghosts and spirits and dream visitations, and everything else that we, in our anguish, will into existence. These are precious gifts that are as valid and as real as we need them to be. They are the spirit guides that lead us out of the darkness.

              I feel the presence of my son, all around, but he may not be there. I hear him talk to me, parent me, guide me, though he may not be there. He visits Susie in her sleep regularly, speaks to her, comforts her, but he may not be there. Dread grief trails bright phantoms in its wake. These spirits are ideas, essentially. They are our stunned imaginations reawakening after the calamity. Like ideas, these spirits speak of possibility. Follow your ideas, because on the other side of the idea is change and growth and redemption. Create your spirits. Call to them. Will them alive. Speak to them. It is their impossible and ghostly hands that draw us back to the world from which we were jettisoned; better now and unimaginably changed.


              With love, Nick.
              Last edited by Ubik; 11-12-2018, 02:05 AM.
              Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

              Kosh: Good!

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Ubik View Post
                I am re-posting here the response that I posted on FB to JMS' post. I do so because it's one of the most eloquent and positive summations of death and grief I have come across in recent times. Nick Cave (the musician / singer / writer) is doing a rolling mailing list / exchange with fans where they can ask questions and he answers one a week. He lost his teenage son some two years ago in a tragic accident and has clearly been working through some of that via his music. Here is the exchange:
                That was beautiful. Thanks for sharing.
                "Fascism always comes in quietly, holding a flag in one hand and a holy book in the other, inching its way in. The bugles and drums only sound after they've already taken over and believe it's too late to do anything about it." JMS Twitter Dec. 24, 2017

                Comment


                • #9
                  This was a sad read. Then I had a dream about my dog that passed away years ago. Pets form such a strong bond. RIP buddy.

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