It’s been a long time since I felt overwhelmed by emotion: The off-kilter, thumping drum of my heart; the tunnel-vision; the lack of air coming in to my lungs… fighting to hold myself in.
The rhythms that come with knowing any creature intimately are the only real bond that is worth something to me. The way I could undulate my hand across her head, the way I knew where and how to comfort her… The closeness that comes with having a pet for 13 years.
She loved my affection as much as a cat can, and I loved her as much as I could ever love an animal. And even though I regret having her euthanized, even though I regret all the decisions I made that caused her harm, the negligence that took both her hind legs’ functionality; I regret a lot, but I will always remember her fondly. I feel like I made a deliberate decision to end her life before her time, and yet I feel relieved that she does not have to live any more of what had become a pitiful existence. She still experienced happiness and contentment, but being covered in her own waste, sleeping alone most of the time, panicking and trying to gnaw at some invisible attacker that was slowly crushing her hips… It was for the best. It had to be. But I will always feel like I could have done things differently and she would still be here. I guess that makes two living things, so far.