My Cat Snicky

It’s a sunny Florida afternoon, and my cat Snicky is sitting outside with me acting as Great Hunter of the Lizards. Well, sort of. Mostly she’s acting as the Great Watcher of the Lizards. We’re out here together whiling away a lazy day because, even if she doesn’t know it, I know she’s dying. I took her to the vet today, who shook his head. I’m preparing myself and the rest of the family for the fact that we’re in pain management mode. She’s had 17 years with us as her humanpeople, and I can only hope we’ve served her well.

My husband found Snicky and her sister, Jonesy, hiding under some stone piles after their momma cat had been hit by a car. They were about six weeks old, give or take, according to the vet who checked them out. Once we brought them home, they were as essential as air – but with a lot more work. My daughter’s first act of sharing was to share her Happy Meals toys with Snicky, who really didn’t care; nevertheless the sharing occurred. Snicky would climb drapes, leap tall fridges in a single bound, and protect me from the lizards that I actually like. She would protect me from them anyway.

Now her leaping is limited to allowing me to pick her up so we can watch movies or read books together. Because she doesn’t groom herself any more, she’ll let me do it. Sometimes. If I bribe her with baby food (the vet said it was okay). She’s been a great pet, and I want her to be as comfortable as possible.

She’s still with us and could be for a little while more, so we’ll spend our time together as we always have. I knew today’s appointment was coming, and it was no surprise that we’re not discussing treatment any more. Knowing a thing is going to happen tends to make the Now that much more important. She’s the stuff of stardust, and she’ll return to the stars sooner than we would like, but we don’t get to choose. I’m going to follow Snicky’s lead: there are lizards to watch, and a patch of sun for us to relax together in.

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