Today, I learned that my second favorite cat in the world, the first being his deceased brother, has been diagnosed with liver failure. He remains alive, very frail but alive, due to the miracles of modern medicine. My mother shared the news with me over lunch today, but the details of it remain blurred. The only thing that I can recall is the sinking feeling in my gut and my heart breaking audibly over the sounds of the busy restaurant.
After lunch, in which I shoveled in the obligatory two bites tasting nothing but sand and saltwater tears, I saw him. His bones were prominent over his back and legs, and his eyes lethargic but alert and bright. I was filled with a deep sorrow and wept softly into his back, and as I shook he feebly licked my hand as he had so many times before.
The unfairness of this broke my shattered heart into even tinier pieces. How could HE try to comfort ME, especially NOW? I guess the real question now is how can I really mourn someone that isn’t yet dead? Logically, it makes no sense.
I’ve never been much of one for goodbyes, as anyone close to me will know well. I prefer to keep them at a ‘See you when I see you’ kind of level whenever possible to spare myself the very real thought that I will never again see said person/place/thing.
I dislike the permanence of death and goodbyes, the feeling that one ought to say or do anything necessary prior to the visit from the Grim Reaper, because WHAT IF I FORGET SOMETHING IMPORTANT?
I *ALWAYS* forget important stuff.
So now we play the Waiting Game, which happens to be my least favorite of all games. There’s always a possibility that he will pull through, but the likelihood of that happening is very slim. Miracles don’t happen to cats.