Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Sophie Martin 1989-2008

I haven't mourned anything in a very long time. I've come to the conclusion that mourning is pretty selfish and self-absorbed actually. Sure I'm crying for my cat, and that she's gone and that I'll miss her everyday. But at the same time, it's selfish because I'm thinking, "What am I going to do without her?" and "Who the hell is going to love me unconditionally like she did?".

I've noticed that people treat cats like their kids, and I'm assuming it hurts the same way if their child would die. For me it was different though. My family got Sophie when I was really young, and we've grown old together, so to me it feels more like we shared a partnership and the maternal feelings didn't come into play until the last year or so. We were just two old biddies bitching about our sore muscles together.

Sophie was a big, round, pulsating furry ball of love. Towards the end I knew it was serious because food didn't even come into the picture, and anyone who knows Sophie knows that is a big deal. It's hard to explain how I'm feeling because a) I'm usually really reserved and don't like sharing personal feelings with other people, especially feelings that will make me cry like a baby, and b) Few people actually understand how much this hurts. Yes, she's just a cat, but how do you explain a twenty year friendship to someone who just doesn't get it.

She loved me just as much as when I was a fat, bitter, angsty teen as when I was a happy weirdo little girl. She loved me although I left her for multiple trips for numerous months. She loved even though I moved her around several apartments in her old age. She loved me as an unemployed deadbeat, as a bawling mess or a hyper, annoying kid.

A few months ago her body started failing the both of us. I removed my bed frame and concocted a makeshift staircase out of hardcover books so she could get up and down my bed easier, and when that became too difficult I moved her food and water to my nightstand so that she could get to it easier from her permanent fixture on my bed. I loved her even though she couldn't make it to the litter box on time. I loved her when she couldn't clean herself and I had to do it for her.

When I took her to the vet on Monday he said she had internal organ failure, and that she would be in pain very soon. That's when I lost it. The only thought worse than being without my Sophie was knowing she would be in pain. But again comes the selfishness because I needed another day with her. When I brought her home I think she knew that her time was coming to an end, and it felt like she was giving into it. She had a hard time walking and her stomach began to expand because of excess fluid caused by her out of commission liver. She wouldn't eat any cat food, and only nibbled on the rotisserie chicken I bought especially for her. Last night we spent over an hour just staring at each until we fell asleep. When she woke up in the middle of the night and tried to stand up but couldn't, I brought the water to her and held her up as she unsuccessfully tried to drink it.

This hurts so much and the hot angry tears won't stop and I know "its for the best" but the selfish part in me just wants her around. I would have put up with hand feeding her and cleaning up the shit streaks on the carpet forever if it meant more time with my Sophie.


Anonymous said...

Rest in peace, Sophus! You have had a wonderful life and have been lucky enough to have had "ma Mich" to love and look after you. My heart is breaking for my girl, I haven't stopped crying all morning! I wish I could have been there for you this afternoon at Dr. Joes but I understand why not. Sophie will always be your girl and you'll always be mine! Love, Mom =^..^=

Teddy said...

I am one of those people that "get it" and my heart aches for you at this time Michelle. It is truly one of the hardest things to go through and although Red and I are close to once again getting to that place with our cat Jasper, I would never live without one. The joy...the LOVE they bring into ones life is priceless and cannot be measured. I wish every person on this planet could have and share a special bond with an animal the way you did with Sophie. If this happened...I think the world would be a VERY DIFFERENT place to live in. Take care Miche...allow yourself this time. *hugs*

Anonymous said...

Don't feel selfish about the mourning. It would be a shame to not reflect on all the time you spent with her.

Anonymous said...

You don't know me, I don't know you, but I know this pain too. It does get better but never goes away. At least I can use this as a reminder to show love to those around me everyday.