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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

langston



I'm sure many of you have already read on Facebook that I lost one of my cats yesterday to an Upper Respiratory Infection and Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP), a viral disease of cats caused by certain strains of a virus called the feline coronavirus. Though this is common in rescue kittens and cats, this happened all too fast and unexpectedly for me.

Langston was just about a year old and had so much energy. He was always getting into trouble and taunting his buddy Porter into wrestling. He was so loving and just loved to be touched and cuddled. He really was a friend of mine and Porter. My roommates came to love and appreciate his youthful charm and also miss him very much. If anyone were to leave their door open, there Langston would be, cuddled on there bed next to their pillow or hiding from Porter, under the bed. It wasn't a surprise to find him in the bathtub or climbing into the home entertainment center to rest by the warm TV. He really was the most curious, fun-loving cat I've come across. He was so forgiving; you could yell at him to get off the counter or give him his ear drops or clip his claws, which he abhorred, but right afterward he would purr and cuddle up into my arms and begged to get his head and his nose scratched. He was my "little bambino" or "monkey" as I affectionately called him.

I was there at the hospital to visit him one last time and as was common with him when he saw me he came right into my arms to cuddle. He was in a lot of pain and very scared, but he knew I was there to love him. I will never forget that moment that he recognized me after a few days of being apart and how, even though he could barely move, he made the effort to come to me and be loved.

I hugged him, pet him and after awhile said my goodbyes. The doctor gave him something to make him really sleepy, then gave him the shot to put him to rest. It was the first time I had ever really watched a living creature, especially one I was close to, leave this existence. I was there when he breathed his last breath and as sad as I was, I could not produce even a tear because the experience was just too unreal to me.

I came home to my other cat, Porter, who is also sad, but more importantly, needs me to think of him, love him and continue to taken care of his needs. This has kept my mind off the entire experience. In the last 24 hours I have tried to fill my mind with fond memories of the time we spent together; this has helped to a degree. The problem is I wish there was something I could have done to prevent this from happening or would have got him care sooner, but what's done is done. My life is still going and there's so much to do; it doesn't feel like I have anytime to breathe after this ordeal.

I am not sure if it's losing him that is such a big deal or the feeling of losing someone that hurts so bad. I've spent a good part of my life being abandoned and losing loved ones. It's always hard for me to really process my feelings and this situation is no different. I keep telling myself, like I have before, that it's not my fault. However; in the back of my mind, I still feel, in some way, that it is.

What's the lesson I can learn from this and other situations? I know that things happen for a reason or sometimes for no reason at all. Good things happen to bad people just as bad things happen to good people, but which am I? It's been four years since my grandmother's death, which is the last time I lost someone very close to me. Maybe it was time for me to feel loss and pain in a effort to keep me in touch with God. Of course I don't blame God for this, how could I? Sometimes it takes a tragedy to set me back on the path, seeking God's blessings and to put trust back into Him and not myself. Maybe this is one of those times.

I feel blessed to have been able to know Langston because he did make me so happy and I am glad that he is no longer in pain. Rest in peace my little bambino.

You have been caught Jey Walking!

2 comments:

Gay LDS Actor said...

I am soo sorry for your loss. My partner and I have three cats, and I thought about our youngest as I read your sincere words. I feel like I understand the pain you are feeling. I cried as I read your word and am still crying now (and I am not really a crier by nature).

But I imagined how I would feel if I lost one of my cats, epecially so suddenly. My heart aches for your loss.

You are right; sometimes bad things just happen. I wouldn't blame yourself. While not fun by any means, death is simply a part of life, and while the circumstances are tragic, continue to remember and celebrate the joy that Langston brought you while he was still alive. The memory of that joy will last a lifetime. Many years ago, I lost a cat I had for nearly fifteen years. She was one of my best friends for many years, and I still think of her often. She brought much joy into my life during some difficult times, and I am grateful for the time we shared.

I'm glad you are grateful for what Langston brought to your life. Hold on to that, not any guilt.

I know no words I can say will take away your pain, but I do hope they can provide some comfort during a difficult time. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

J G-W said...

A few years ago, our cat Cleopatra died. We went through a very painful grieving process. It was as real and profound as if we had lost a human member of our family. She was a different species and couldn't speak English, but she had her own totally unique personality, and she gave and received real love from us. In reality, she was/is a member of our family. I still think of her from time to time and miss her.

Part of my grieving involved writing a biography of Cleo, posted here.