I got Madison for my eighteenth birthday. It is hard to remember being that young. Starting university, not yet married, not yet a mother, not yet divorced. He was my only responsibility. We grew up together. Twenty years he was my friend. I would connect with old friends and they would be amazed that he was still here. I would joke that he was a special breed that would live forever. As the years piled up it hurt my heart to think of the day that he wouldn’t be part of my life. There are a million ways that he brought me joy. Madison was just always there.
I moved to a smaller city 3 years ago and found a kind vet who probably thinks I am a little nuts. She would weigh him, tell me how much he had lost and then as gently as possible remind me that we were seeing a old cat getting older. It made no difference, I would cry for the whole visit while trying to have a normal conversation. Yep, three years, twice a year I would cry the whole time. Then the 2nd last visit, she told me that he had infected teeth that we couldn’t do anything about. I was to keep giving him his kidney and arthritis meds and watch to make sure he was eating. Then it happened first one feeding than another, then three days went by without him eating.
Morning of the 11th I woke up with Madison snuggled up against me as he had for almost 20 years, I looked at him and realized that he didn’t have any more time. It felt like the end of everything. I made the call to Dr. Sherry and spent the morning with my friend. I didn’t think I was going to be able to walk into the vet but I did. I held him tight in my arms as his breathing slowed and his eyes closed and then he was gone. He liked to sleep on my head sometimes (crazy cat) and I would lay there and listen to his heart beat, thinking it sounded so fast, marveling at how long it had beat in his chest, and now it has stopped.
And just like that I am older and he has moved on. I will see him again and there will be joy in our meeting. For now, it is raining.
Some people might think it silly to morn a pet but I would rather see it in the way described by a wonderful woman "In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love.
Madison: October 1989 - August 11 2009 - my small furry man who I cared for with great love.
We are not lost in these woods, nor are they lost in us - Radical Druid