"Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine and at last you create what you will."
George Bernard Shaw

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Saying Goodbye to Pets

Josh is coming home tomorrow morning if Tabby is still with us and we're going to hang out with her for a bit. Then I'm going to take her to the vet (Lewis Animal Hospital in O'Bryonville). Can't imagine going anywhere else with her. The people that work there are just amazing.

Saying goodbye to pets is one of the most terrible things in the world. Tomorrow I'm going to say goodbye to Tabby. 

She's a big girl! Don't judge...
She is technically the "second" cat we ever had, though we got her on the same day as Pepper, our first. We went to the pet store to get Pepper food, and there was Tab, wanting to be adopted. And it just so happened that you got a free kitten when you bought a big bag of cat food. And it also just so happened that Tabby reached out and touched her nose to mine, a sign from the heavens in my 9-year-old eyes that we were meant to take her home as well. 

When Pepper disappeared a year or two later she became our only cat for years until we adopted little Chuck. (He terrorized her and was not the happy companion we thought he might be for her!)

Chuck gets all the ladies with that wink.

Pepper was really my cat, and Tabby became Josh's cat. She has always preferred his lap to mine, just like Chuck prefers mine to Josh's. But after we went to school, and on days we weren't with Dad, (and realistically even when we were with Dad) Tabby was his cat. She has never done anything remarkable such as fetch like Chuck. She doesn't "talk" to us like Viv or Finn. She isn't loving in a clingy way like Patches was. But I've always seen her as one of the most faithful, even-tempered animals I've met. 

We've had Vivienne for a little over a year and I've lost track of all the bite and scratch marks she's given me. She bites me pretty much daily. I can't ever recall Tabby being so upset that she hurt us. She has stiff-armed Chuck in the head plenty of times, but that doesn't count. He always started it. 

So now Tabby is at least 16 years old, and it's time for her to go. And tomorrow afternoon after work I'm going to go take some pictures of her and say goodbye. I really, really just hope she's still there when I get to Dad's. The thing with this goodbye is, unlike my goodbye to Patches, I may end up seeing Tabby again. I've offered to take her to the vet if it comes down to that. It won't be the Tabby I know and love, which is why I hope she's still with it a bit tomorrow when I stop by. But I know I have the option of possibly seeing her again. Mom took Patches for me when I was in college, which I will always be grateful for. And I wouldn't want Dad to have to take Tabby. 

Patches was such a doll baby. Sweetest cat ever. Let's hope Vivy mellows to be like her some day. 
Owning pets is such a catch 22. They bring such amazing joy and happiness into your life, but they don't live that long and you end up with enormous sadness and grief down the road. And you know it's coming eventually when you take them home! I wasn't sure I'd want another pet again after Patches died. And it took over two years before I seriously considered whether or not I could handle everything that comes with having another pet--including their death. And what did I do? I went out and got a clone of Patches. 

Except Viv has the true Tortishell personality: "independent" as the vet nicely put it.
And THEN what did I do? I went out and got her a buddy. 

Phineas, who we brought home as an "Evelyn." 
I know that some day these two, my first actual babies, will also have to go. But that's something I can't even remotely focus on. I can't even think about it most days. So for now we'll focus on Tabby, and a few of her favorite things: 

ice cream
the filling out of donuts
butter off of saltine crackers
milk from your cereal bowl
did I mention ice cream? 
being anywhere that Chuck is not
her humans
**additions from Josh I somehow left out: 
sour cream and onion pringles
cream cheese
steak and shake fries (had to be steak and shake. She'd eat McD's fries, but she LOVES S+S)

We're starting to run out of tissues here so I need to wrap this up. But before I go I have to leave you with a photo of my other deceased "pet": Oliver. The meanest hamster who ever lived, but he was a pet nonetheless so I feel obligated to include him. Be thinking of Tab these next couple days while she's still hanging on. Love you all! 

Don't be fooled by that cute little face. He was a very violent rodent!


  1. Oh Meg, I am so sorry to hear this. You know I understand how hard it is to lose a furchild. My thoughts are with you and your family and Tabby. I hope that Tabby's remaining days are comfortable and peaceful. I hope you also are able to find a sense of peace, hard as it is, with the situation. I, like you, dread the day with every fiber of my being when my babies are gone. It is unfathomable to imagine life without them isn't it? Just remember that the pain and worry means you are special and brave enough to open your heart fully to furries as well as to people. Not everyone is willing or able to do that. Love you and will be thinking about you!

  2. It must be the healthful diet that kept her around so long. Your list of her favorite things cracked me up completely unexpectedly. The filling out of donuts? Sounds like she was my kind of cat.


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