Yesterday we said goodbye to Spencer, the craziest, quirkiest, wildest, most amazingly and frustratingly unique cat I have ever known. Inside this house he was incredibly affectionate but always into mischief… he was always getting into something and giving me funny things to write about. Like the time I caught him fishing in the turtle tank or the time he somehow took the door off the hinges to get to the spare room.
From the moment I took him home he made sure I knew that he wasn’t going to make my life easy, but he also showed me that even though I apparently absolutely hate cats and everything that comes along with them… that I was fully capable of loving him in spite of it all. He was affectionate, funny, and loyal to me like no other. I was the only person who could do anything with him, while others lived in fear of ended up shredded. I admit, I sort of loved that.
I am completely devastated. I know he was old, I know his health was deteriorating rapidly and I know it was the right thing to do… but I feel completely and utterly heartbroken. I knew that no matter how much he drove me nuts over the years that when the time came to say goodbye that I’d be absolutely shattered, and I am. I feel so incredibly sad and more than anything I feel guilty. Guilty for all the times he frustrated me and I fantasized about cat free life, for the times I tried to rehome him, and for all the times he ate my plants, scratched my furniture and shed all over everything… making some small part of me wish he wasn’t here. I wish I’d never had any of those thoughts, because I did love him and I never REALLY wanted him gone.
Now that he is gone the house feel so empty without him. He had such a presence in this house and in my heart, and both just feel so empty without him now. He was my longest relationship other than my parents… I had him almost 17 years, that’s longer than I have been with my husband!
Taking him to the vet and making the decision to put him to sleep was horrible. Watching it was horrible. Everyone says that they just get a needle and fall asleep… well not SPENCER! I know I’ll look back on it and laugh one day, because it was so HIM, to fight them right to the end, but it was so hard to watch. He has always hated the vet and was one of those cats that need the giant gloves and blanket. So he struggled, screamed, thrashed and everything else while they were trying to give him the needle. Nothing we’ve not seen a hundred times, but it was harder this time because we knew what that needle meant. The struggle somehow made it not so much a peaceful end, but like we were actually KILLING him.
Once they managed to get the needle into him, we were able to lay him in his bed and stroke him and say our goodbyes as he went to sleep, and I’m glad for that, but I’d be lying if I said the entire process wasn’t horrible for us. Xander can see it all a bit better than I can, he sort of thought it was appropriate that Spencer went out like that, because he is a fighter, but for me… it was just incredibly sad.
When I came home, it was extremely difficult, because once again I found myself in a typical situation where I would normally eat to numb the pain, and that wasn’t possible anymore. If this had been 2 years ago it would have been McDonald’s for dinner and then spending the evening consoling myself with a bag of Maltesers. Hard for the non food-addict / emotional eater to understand but it really was like a drug that would tone down these extreme emotions.
Now? All I can do is FEEL and DEAL and holy shit, it’s hard and it sucks. I have to just cry my heart sore, talk it out and deal with it and it’s completely foreign to me. I just sat and cried and was completely twitchy with frustration from not knowing what in the hell to do with myself, what to do to make it feel better… it sucked, it just fucking sucked. On the flip side, I wasn’t even hungry. My husband had to keep telling me to eat because while I knew that the food is how I would have dealt before, not only was the ability gone but the hunger was as well. A very strange and frustrating feeling. I’ve always wished I was one of those people who COULDN’T eat when I was sad or stressed, rather than wanting to eat everything in sight… now I guess I am.
So all of this together, the guilt, the fresh memories of the vet, the sadness and the emptiness in the house … yeah, I’m just pretty damn miserable at the moment and all I can do is ride it out and let it run its course. I am just SO FUCKING SAD and I miss him so much.
Farewell, you crazy, crazy, annoying, adorable bastard. I love you.