I’ve been silent on here for a bit. I’ve had to put off blogging, because well, I was, still am, sad. Last Saturday one of my cats, Annie, died. It royally sucked. She was one of my babies. I’ve had pets (dogs, cat, hamster) all through my childhood and had to mourn their deaths. But those times I was not the person having to directly deal with it (decisions, body disposal), so it was definitely tough this time.
When I found the munchkin, I don’t know if it was shock, but I was actually very calm. Her death was not expected, but she was on the older side. I knew that I had to figure out what I needed to do and I was responsible. It’s not as if I can simply bury her in the backyard.
I had to look up what place I could take her to and on a Saturday evening, it turns out there is only one such place. I first found online that the Humane Society would take the bodies for cremation. So, I wrapped up the munchkin in a towel and placed her in the kitty carrier and jumped in a cab. Turns out the office was closed and NOT open 24-hours (despite what’s stated online). I grab another cab and head home, my poor little kitty in tow. Jump online again and see that Animal Control is open till 8PM. Again, grab a cab and stoically drop off my little baby.
It wasn’t until I got home that I lost it.
I called my mom and barely got out that Annie is gone. We talked for hours until it was late and I needed to get some sleep. I was emotionally exhausted. I grabbed Cali and made her sleep with me. Or at least be on the bed with me until I fell asleep. When I woke up Sunday morning, she was by my side. This is not completely out of the ordinary, but 9 times out of 10, she is sleeping elsewhere. Every morning since Annie’s been gone, I have woken up with Cali on the bed next to me.
I know Cali knows Annie is no longer around. She’s much more tolerant with me constantly grabbing her and putting her on my lap. She doesn’t squirm and object when I pick her up now. She is much more aware when I get home at night after being away all day. Before she would barely turn her head toward me as I walked through the door. Now she jumps down from where ever she is and runs to me. Annie used to do that.
My eyes still well up (as they are now) when I write or think about Annie. On Sunday and Monday, I had all day plans, which was really good to keep me preoccupied and distracted. I told my friends that Annie died, but that I can’t talk about it. I also couldn’t let them hug me, because I knew I’d lose my composure and start bawling. I’m still not sure I can actually talk aloud about her without crying.
I got Annie and Cali in early September 1998. It had been over a year since my childhood cat had to be put down. I was living at home after college, but mostly living alone (my father lived in Hong Kong and my mother spent most of the year there). I wanted company in a big house.
During one of the times my mother was home, we went to PetSmart for cat adoption day, sponsored by Little Orphan Animals. I remember seeing a tiny gray striped kitten cowering in the corner of one of the cages. She looked so little and scared. I told the volunteer that I wanted to see that kitten. She was placed in my arms – all 2.5 pounds of her – and I fell in love. I signed papers and was to be the proud parent of Annie (her original name was Pisa, but inspired by the name of the shelter I named her Annie).
As my mother and I are packing up the car with all of the new cat stuff, my mother says “Don’t you think Annie should have a friend?” This coming from the woman who advised me not to get another pet after my childhood cat died because it’s too painful to deal with the losses.
So, back into PetSmart we go and ask if they have another kitten around the same age. They do and I say “I’ll take her!”
A few hours later, my kittens are delivered to my home, as per the shelter’s policy of bringing the animals to your home. After the initial “whoa, where the hell am I?” they settled in very nicely and proceeded to become the most spoiled princesses of the castle. Annie I picked out of all the cats and Cali came sight unseen. Both wound up being (and Cali still is) the best kitties in the world.
I miss my girl, but am very lucky that I still have my mush, Cali. Her presence and warm, loving disposition keeps me going.