On Thursday evening, April 21, The Runt experienced what the vet described as a massive heart attack. Death was instantaneous; he was here, and then he was gone.
The cats had their dinner that evening, and then we went outside so he and Little Girl could supervise my work in the garden. After a while I went inside and the cats were going in and out; I found him around nine o'clock in the garage.
I didn't even know he was dead; I bent down to pet him and he didn't move. I picked him up and carried him in the house and put him in his pet bed, asking him what was wrong. He was so warm! And his ears were pricked forward. And he was not breathing.
On Friday morning, I took him to the vet so that arrangements could be made. I said my goodbyes, and then I got in the car and drove. And drove and drove and drove. You can't outrun sorrow, but I sure tried.
They say grief makes you do strange, strange things, and I now know this to be true, because on Saturday I found myself buying a cat statue. With wings.
SHUT IT, alright? I contend that grief gives you a free pass to do things you would never in a million years do otherwise.
So I took the winged cat home, and I was trying to decide where to put it. In the garden? On the porch? In his pet bed? I finally decided to put it in The Runt's favorite spot in the kitchen, which was on a ledge looking out the window. While I put the statue on the ledge, I noticed that Little Girl was out in the backyard.
She looked up, saw that cat statue in the window, and came running across the yard. She flew into the kitchen and up onto the ledge ...
... she thought it was The Runt.
She sat next to that statue for a long time. And then she laid down next to it.
Oh! And every time she hears a noise, she jerks around, like, "Brudder? Is that you?"
So, yes, we are grieving. Dammit, I KNEW that "look on the bright side" shit would come back to bite me in the ass. That, and the whole "I think I'll wait until the fall to have the ultrasound done" thing.
Thank you for all your kind thoughts. They mean the world to me. I will be sad for some time to come. And so will Little Girl.
We will have a sad season and mourn. We will abide. And we will miss and remember our friend.