I’m no good at playing God. Once again, I’m learning this painful lesson.
Tomorrow morning I will drive my precious kitty to the vet and have him euthanized. Selfishly, I’ve tried to keep him here with me much longer than was kind or rational.
Crash is suffering. Tremendously. And I didn’t want to see it. I kept hoping for a miracle, wishing his diagnosis of F.I.P was wrong. I didn’t want to make this decision. I wasn’t ready to lose his fuzzy, sweet presence in my life. I truly didn’t want to tell my three children it was time. I didn’t want to play God.
I’ve watched him closely these last few weeks. He watched me back. His eyes tell me he is miserable, but he is doing the best he can—for me.
He’s still eating and drinking, although today he fell asleep for fifteen minutes with his head on the water bowl. I thought he had passed and sent up a grateful prayer. That’s the moment when I realized how selfish I was being. So when he finally moved away from the bowl, I made the call. I tried (and failed) not to cry as I made the appointment for his death.
I told the kids and they agreed that it was the right thing to do for Crash. Ian spent an hour trying to dig a hole deep enough to bury Crash on our hillside and came back covered in sweat and saddened by the fact that the rocks on our hill made his task impossible. He realizes that if we can’t bury Crash deep enough to keep animals from digging him up, we’ll need to leave him at the vet to be cremated. My heart hurt even more. I know when Crash is gone from this world, what happens to his body is irrelevant, but not to my child. He’d like a tombstone and a place to mourn our cat.
“No more cats,” I told Nick, much like I told him, “No more dogs,” after our dog Lucy died. Only this time I mean it.
“As long as we don’t have to foster cats,” he said, and then added, “But maybe someday when we have our little house in Virginia, you’ll want another cat.”
I still have two cats. Hermoine is 14 years old and I only pray that I do better by her than I have by Crash.
My barn cat, Tonks, is 80% feral and only 3 years old. She turned up as a kitten and still won’t let anyone touch her except me, and then only when she’s eating. (Weirdly, when I pull my hand away to stop petting her, she always swats at me with her claws. It’s become our strange ritual. I pet her while she gobbles her food, and then I pull my hand away quick, but not always quick enough to avoid her scratches.)
Darlin’ went to her forever home this week
and Gala is still here with not a single adoption application.
A new foster puppy will arrive on the 10th. I hope to post about all that next week, but this week is too crazy emotional between Crash’s decline, my daughter’s high school graduation, a house full of grandparents, and the release of my latest book (this TUESDAY!). My head is spinning, my heart is full, and every night I need a glass (or two) of wine.
Life is rich right now with heartache and happiness. I’m trying to do both justice. Please say a prayer for my sweet kitty, Crash.
Thanks for reading.
For more information on any of my foster dogs or to apply to adopt, foster, or volunteer, visit ophrescue.org.
For more information on my writing, check out CaraWrites.com.
For more pictures and updates on foster dogs past and present, join Another Good Dog Facebook group. As always, I love to hear from readers, so please feel free to leave a comment on the blog.
15 thoughts on “I’m No Good at Playing God”
I’m so sorry, sweetie. I’ve been there.
It’s hard to know what to say. I have been in the same situation and the pain is raw. No words can help but I have said a little prayer for Crash and shed a tear for both of you.x
thank you for your prayers – so appreciated. the pain is raw.
I too have been through this, years ago. You are doing what is best for Crash, not an easy task at all, but done with love. Prayers for you and yours.
Thank you Linda. prayers appreciated.
So sorry Cara. It’s very sad. Your kitty crash is beautiful. So hard to do this but it’s miserable to suffer. My thoughts and prayers are with you. My daughter is graduating from HS this Saturday too. I will look for your book.
thanks Laura. It was a tough morning, but he’s in a better place. I hope I’ll do better by my other kitties. Graduation is tonight – so that should brighten all our moods. congratulations on your daughter’s graduation!
My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. I just went through the same decision making process last month with our 11 year old dog. It’s never easy and always painful.
Thanks Kathy – it’s part of the privilege of having pets, I suppose, but as you said, it’s never easy. I’m sorry for your loss.
I’m so deeply sorry. I know my words won’t help but know y’all are in my prayers.
Thank you – the kind words do help and the prayers, too.
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Ohhhh Cara I’m so sorry! But I’m happy to hear that Darlin finally found a home! It’s so hard choosing the right time to let our furry friends go. When my Saint Bernards got cancer I really struggled with letting them go and it was only the wise words of an outstanding Vet that helped me make a quick decision with my male. When the female also got cancer I probably let her go too long because I didn’t want her to go.. It’s so hard and everyone and I’m sending good vibes your way!
Thank you! It was a tough week, and I know I let it go on too long. Lessons learned, I suppose. Hoping to be less selfish as I get older. He’s in a much better place. I really appreciate the kind words.
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