So, my cat Púca died last week, which led into a pretty sad week for me. I can always tell when I am out of balance as the physicality of the world really starts to play up – liquids spill, items get knocked over more easily, stuff won’t fit back into places I just took them out of and other stuff falls over no matter what way I try to balance – it seemingly disobeying the laws of physics to do so. The physical-ness of the world seems out of kilter as if I don’t fully fit in anymore.
The first question most people asked was “Are you going to get another Cat?” and I am not going to get another cat. I have two dogs, four turtles and a fish, so I am currently all good for pets. Besides, I don’t want to replace Púca with another cat just to make it all feel easier.
My Dad told me yesterday that when his first cat died he was very sad and thought he’d never have the same relationship with another cat again. In the end though, he said, it turns out that cats are pretty much all the same and that I should just get another cat as I’ll learn that Púca wasn’t really that special. Now, he was coming from a good and caring place when he said that, and to be fair it’s probably very true, but that’s not what I want. AT ALL. I don’t want to ever feel that way about Púca – I want to honour and remember her for the huge part she played in my life.
A few years back I got out of a situation that was really unhealthy for me and by doing so I dropped about 95% of my social network. This means that Púca was pretty much the oldest friend I had in my life. She was the element that was in my life for the longest time – longer than even my wife has been.
There was so many time that she got me through very dark days – it was me and her against the world. She was great company when I didn’t want to be around people. She was awesome. She was my friend.
And then, about three years ago I found her outside and she couldn’t use her back two legs. Many vet visits and one to the Cat hospital in Dublin, no one knew what was wrong with her. So rather than spend any more money I didn’t have on tests that weren’t telling us anything anyway, I brought her home and just nursed her in my office for a few months as she recovered. She helped me when I needed it most, I helped her when she needed it most.
It took months but Púca did learn to walk again, but she was always a bit wonky. She seemed happy to be alive. I know I was happy she stuck around for another while.
But recently Púca took a bad turn. I won’t go into details but suffice to say I don’t think she was happy. So we took that final trip to the vet, and I stayed with her throughout the whole thing. Definitely the most heartbreaking moment of my life, and fuck me, I have had some shitty times.
Now I know a cat dying is hardly the saddest or most devastating thing in the world in the grand, or even medium, scheme of things, and I am sure that if I did get another cat that maybe I would see that all cats are just the same. But, I want to acknowledge the role she played in my life, and honour and thank for for that.
And to do that, I feel I must accept the full pain of her loss, I don’t ever want to feel she was not special.
Puca was my friend and I will miss her greatly.
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