Paula Gregg revealed her devastating diagnosis of pancreatic cancer on April 18, and on May 2 she was gone.
I knew Paula as a fellow cat blogger, doting cat mom to her beloved Persians Truffle & Brulee, and President of the Cat Writers Association. She was Managing Editor for the Cat Blogosphere, organized Secret Paws, an annual event that made so many blogging kitties happy, and put together a Cats of the World Weekly Planner for many years. She was tireless and passionate about the many projects she was involved in. I never had the pleasure of meeting her in person but it was obvious in our online communications that she was a true southern lady.
I felt a connection to Paula for two reasons. First, we both had a beautiful, furry Truffle in our lives. Second, over the past couple years Paula devoted her time and energy to taking care of her elderly parents. The past year was especially difficult for her as her mother Faye struggled with Alzheimer's. Faye succumbed just before Christmas, and in those last difficult weeks her father had a lengthy hospital stay as well. I don't know how many times Paula posted on Facebook that she would come home late at night after a hard day and seek comfort in her cats.
So many times I thought about reaching out to her, just to say that I understood what she was going through, and to let her know how much I admired her grace through it all, but I never did. Now I wish that I had.
Times like this are a painful reminder of how short and precious life is. The little things we stress over are really so insignificant when something like this happens. We need to appreciate each and every day - even the not-so-great ones - and cherish the time we have with our loved ones, because we never know what tomorrow will bring.
Paula will be greatly missed by her family, friends, cats (who are safe with their breeder), and everyone who knew her. The outpouring of love for her in the pet blogosphere has been beautiful to witness. I hope she realized how many lives she touched.