Monday, September 22, 2008

Saying Goodbye

Saying goodbye always sucks. Somehow it seems that I do a bit of it in September. I think next year I'm skipping September. Today I had to take my 17 year old cat to the vet for the last time. Rhonda was feral when I adopted her. A few months later she adopted me as well. She was always moody, had enough attitude for a couple of dozen cats, and while she tolerated several people, especially in later years, but she never liked anyone except me, no matter how much they tried to be nice to her. I've had her for most of my adult life, and I hardly remember life without her sassiness, and her copious fluffs of white fur flying about, clinging to everything I own and piling up in corners, no matter how hard I tried to keep it under control. My beautiful princess, we had 17 years, and yet it seems only days. You came to me a tiny ball of fluff, full of sass and fire, odd-eyed. No matter how I tried to tame you, that wild streak was too stubborn to be tamed. You were as close to human as any animal could be. You listened to the answering machine and told me when your grandma called. You snuggled under the comforter in the winter. You kissed me when I needed a bit of comfort. You were never much of a lap cat, too wild, I guess, but you sure were going to be in bed with me at every opportunity. You weren't much for company, other than to accept compliments about your beauty, as long as they stayed out of arms reach, unless, of course, you'd had a drunk sock, in which case you pretty much didn't if they tried to pet you or not. You did your best to keep the other cats in the house, even the senior ones, in line. The memories go on and on. You were my first cat as an adult. You were my first baby. You brought me happiness, love, and perhaps a bit of frustration from time to time. I did my best to give you a good and happy life, plenty of catnip, and a warm bed, I hope it was as wonderful for you as it was for me. In the end, I waited longer than I should have, perhaps out of selfishness, to send you on, but knowing that you were in pain and rapidly becoming unable to get around on your own, and talking with you last night, I think this was the right time. Enjoy your days across the rainbow bridge, and know that you are forever in my heart. Love, Mama

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