It’s hard for me to type right now. My orange cat is on my lap with his head pressing down on my wrists as he licks and nips my hands because he wants me to pet him. He’s kind of fat and doesn’t really even fit completely on my lap – and my computer is taking up most the space anyway – so he keeps rearranging his chubby body so he stays on. At times he sits up and licks my chin.
He’s purring. He missed me. I was just gone for four days and no matter that the cats are really the girl’s cats. They are my cats. I’m the one who stays up late and they snuggle up close to me when I work or watch TV. I’m the one they sleep on. The orange on curled up on my chest and the black on on my hip. Every night for two years. I’m the one who feeds them every morning at 4:30am and I’m the one they snuggle with all day when the kids are at school.
So they are my cats. Even though we officially say the orange one(Truffle) is Eloise’s and the black one(Tyko) belongs to Esther.
But it doesn’t really matter I guess who they officially belong to because the important thing to note is that they are family. And I love them.
But today from 700 miles away I had to tell them to put Tyko down.
I put a price on his life. Nothing I’ve never had to do before. Nothing I’ve never had to explain to my children before.
And don’t think that that isn’t the first thing they asked me when I got off the plane – because they know. And it broke their heart. And mine. And I’m sitting here second guessing my decision because I’m not that kind of person.
I love animals. I love all animals(okay, maybe not snakes) and Tyko is a part of our family, and I’ve been sobbing for five hours since that phone call. But I could not spend thousands and thousands of dollars. I couldn’t.
And maybe it was easy for me making that decision. Not seeing my children’s faces as I broke the news. Not watching them say goodbye to their sweet kitty.
It was so easy for me maybe.
But I sit here with my tears falling onto Truffle’s fur. Knowing he’s the one who has lost his brother, his best friend, his playmate, his companion, his napping partner.
And I can’t change what I decided. And I grieve for him.
But mainly for Tyko because I chose not to save him.
Eloise put it better than any of us could when she said “I never want to get another pet because this just hurts too much.”
That’s how much it hurts to open your heart to unconditional love.
We’ll miss you Tyko cat. Please know you were loved.