Life with a 21 year-old cat isn’t always simple. Misha’s declining. There are days when I have to feed her a kibble at a time, and days when she’ll barely eat at all. There are times when I’ve spent the entire day trying to feed her, gone through the entire stock of what she used to eagerly chow down on, and dissolve in tears because she refuses it all. This is it, I end up thinking.
Then, as if the little wretch was just waiting for me to break down, she takes her arthritic self to her food dish and starts munching. Damn cat.
It’s hard, watching the end approach. Watching for the signs that the balance has tipped, and the bad days outnumber the good, and it’s time to do the kindly thing and call the vet. Right now, she still seems to be enjoying life. She’ll wander out to the porch on warm days and manage to climb up on her favorite chair, surveying her domain.
She sleeps most of the time, but still takes inordinate pride in getting in to everything I’m doing, and getting on top of my work.
And, once I persuade her to find another spot, she settles for getting on top of my other work.
She keeps me up at the end of every night wanting a good snuggle, and wakes me up in the morning wanting another.
And sometimes, she’ll faceplant in her blankie, looking for the absolute last crumb from her kitty treats.
She often gets so absorbed in her search that she doesn’t notice me giving her more until I nudge her. I love those days, because I know I can get enough food in her belly, and it’s adorable to watch.
I have no idea how much time we have left. I treasure every second. Okay, except maybe a few of the ones where I’m getting prodded awake by a cold cat, and a few of the ones where I’m being kept awake because she keeps changing her mind about whether she wants to be under the covers or not. But I know I’ll miss even those moments, so I try to treasure them, too.