Sleepy Sputnik

Sleepy Sputnik (QT mov)

I think it’s time.

He’s tired, he’s so very tired, and he’s old, and he’s been on this planet nearly two decades, a marathon for a cat, such a long time.

This sweet kitty pressed his paws into my palm for so many time­less times, hold­ing hands in his lit­tle kitty way, cud­dling under my arm and look­ing into my face some­times, just look­ing, just watch­ing, just see­ing if I was there.

His fur, once glossy and smooth and soft, is mat­ted now with tan­gles; he has not eaten for sev­eral days and can’t even drink any more.

Sputnik says Hello (QT mov)

It’s Friday night. Tomorrow I’ll go to a first aid class — part of my fost/​adopt par­ent licens­ing require­ments — and then I’ll take him on what I fear will be his last journey.

It’s a good week­end here in Arizona. The skies are clear and lucent, the air fresh but not bit­ter with cold. Birds are com­ing back and early flow­ers are peek­ing out of the tone­less khaki of the desert in winter.

I’m not ready for this. I wasn’t ready for it with Mira either, when I knew it was due, when I knew there was no other path for us to take. We cre­ate our own sam­sara; we make our own suf­fer­ing — at least most of the time.

We’re never ready for the last. We’re never ready to lose these sweet warm life com­pan­ions. The idea of Rainbow Bridges is lovely but not plau­si­ble and the cer­tainty of the per­ma­nent part­ing lies heavy on my heart.

But he is so thin and light, starv­ing, dying; only two weeks ago he rested beside me and cud­dled as he always did, purring gen­tly and seek­ing, pet­ting, paw­ing, knead­ing, look­ing up to see if I knew he was still there, and I kissed his furry head and told him I loved him, and he rested beside me, frag­ile and beau­ti­ful and hope­lessly impermanent.

Sputnik and Mira

Sputnik and Mira (QT mov)

Spring brings life and the promise of future, but my lit­tle grey bed bis­cuit can’t hold on any more, and I will not require it of him. If he whis­pers to me, if he tells me what I think is in his heart, I’ll know it — and I won’t let him be alone when the day wanes for­ever in his sight.

I’m going to talk to him, I’m going to ask him, I’m going to hold his hands and let him know that if it’s time, I’ll be there for him.

He was always there for me.

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