Sometimes it seems that you can’t win for losing…and yet, as the old Chinese saying goes, “Who knows what’s good; who knows what’s bad?”
The vet tells us that our old Frby cat has between 4 and 8 months left before his kidneys fail completely. He’s 16, and that sort of thing is to be expected in cats that age (Slim’s survival to almost 20 was unusual), but that doesn’t make it any easier to handle. Shel and I are both head over heels for that cat; he’s the best cat we’ve ever known (sorry, Slim), and between us we have well over a century of cat acquaintances to compare. So the news sucks.
But who knows what’s good…etc.? Dr. Nancy was able to pull him through his last crisis pretty well, and he’s at home and back to normal for now. We have a chance to love and cherish him, care for him, see him interact with Fred — the kitten we got to keep him company after his housemate left us last month — and, when the time comes, make informed decisions about his quality of life and the best time to let him go.
With a little luck and care, we’ll have a few more months with our old buddy. And if we aren’t that fortunate, we’ll at least have had a chance to say goodbye and get used to the idea. One of the cruelties of life is that people usually outlive their pets. The good news is, we have them to begin with.
Frb’s ashes will join those of Ebbie and Mr. Slim in our collection, and someday they’ll be mixed with ours and spread lovingly in a nice place by our kids (who will totally “get” it).
We’ll have lots of time to play, then.