Thursday, February 17, 2005

A Remembrance

Reading Pua's posts about her poor, ill-but-will-get-better puppy last night and today reminded me again that this past February 3 marked the fourth anniversary of when my cat, Natasha (Gnat, for short), died at the age of 16-1/2.

She was 3/4 Seal Point Siamese and looked every bit of it (although without the cross-eyed look). I got her when she was only 4 weeks old from an old friend who had the mother, who had rejected the litter of 6. Debbie couldn't keep all of them and, knowing that I had just lost my previous cat (Nameless)two weeks earlier, thought I might want another. I did. She was an adorable little thing, no bigger than a hand-length and was perched on Debbie's shoulder trying desparately to nurse on her neck. (Thus, granting her my nickname of "The Notorious Hickey Monster").

From there on in, the adventures of a cat and her boy continued through many moves, within town and across the country. From TooStoned, to Durham, to NYC, to San Francisco, and back again. (Surprizingly, despite probably having the cat version of a nervous breakdown, she still managed to handle airplane travel (in the cabin) quite well and her presence even scored me a bottle of champagne on my flight from TooStoned when I moved to Ess Eff.) As well as being there for many situations both bad and good, she was one of the constants in my life somehow managing to put up with my moods, my crabiness, and my smoking.

Through most of her life, she was in great shape but in the summer of 1999 (she was 14 then) she started not eating and tended to throw up. I brought her into the vets for a check-up. Alas, she was dealing with the beginning stages of renal failure; something there's no cure for. The doc couldn't say how long she'd have left but she could still had quality time left giving that she needed IV fluids administered once a week (to help flush her kidneys). There was no way I could administer it myself since I don't like handling needles and could NOT see doing that to her so I brought her in once a week to the vets to have them do it. She did well for a year but that next summer, she took another turn for the worse and the vet said the IV fluids needed to be done twice a week. Done....twice a week to the vets.

Alas, six months later, her kidneys had finally given out and there was nothing left to do but to put her down. She had been at the vets the last couple days to see if she would somehow rally but no dice. The vet called me that morning and said that there was nothing left to do. I headed over there and spent the last half hour or so with her in one of the exam rooms holding her, in tears, hating the whole situation, hating having to make the final decision but knowing it was the only good decision I could make. I called in the vet, told Gnat "I love you", and stroked her head as the shot was administered.

Her urn is still sitting in my bedroom as I type this. (Yeah, that may sound a bit twisted but what the heck!)

On occasion, I still think I see her out of the corner of my eye and maybe she's still hanging out looking for any food that may have been dropped on the floor. I like to think so. That's okay with me. Will I ever get another pet? Yeah, one day; dunno when tho but one day...


Okay...speaking of remembering, I meant to post this last night but spaced it. I know this may be bad placement after a sad post but I needed to see something funny after it. So, I present to you:

Paris and Lindsey on the phone.