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Have you been to a hospital before? Quite frankly a veterinary hospital smells quite the same. The room smelled awfully intense of bleach and cleaning supplies, it made me reel back in disgust. The walls are white with paintings that spark color, an attempt to liven up the room that reeked of death around the corner. A small ceramic bowl is on the counter, filled with treats and a stand-up notecard. Enjoy a little treat to your little one. On the note was a happy dog and cat. Above the counter, is a logo sign; BluePearl Veterinary Partners.
A solemn nurse awaits behind a desk, a clipboard in hand and a box of tissues for soon-to-come tears.
I nodded simply, trying to give a smile. I reached for the box with trembling hands, the four of us follow her into a private room, opening the door to my mom with bunched up tissues in her lap and one in her hand.
“Hi,” She merely whispered to us, her voice cracking.
“Hey,” I pursed my lips tight, I didn't want to talk. I didn’t want any human interaction for the next year.
I sat down on a chair in the corner, away from my mournful family. My abdomen contracted impulsively as I forced there to be no crying, never could I have let my family see me cry as hard as I wanted to at that moment.
Mom was explaining what was going on. I couldn’t listen to her. No matter how hard I tried, my mind couldn’t process or form the words coming out of her mouth. My eyes were closed and my mind wandered to somewhere where this wasn’t happening and never did. The deep sound of the heavy door awoke me from my trance; I must’ve been in this room for at least an hour now, maybe more.
Another lady dressed almost the exact same as earlier stood in the room, a limp figure in her arms with a blanket covering it. I knew, I just knew what was swaddled so sweet in the soft cloth like a newborn baby with its eyes closed and breathing softly. The sight ruined me. Abruptly I broke down, my wall to not cry broken with the piercing of hard rocks. Now, the hard chokes of my sobbing filled through the room, everyone had their eyes on me.
I turned away, a hand clamped tightly over my mouth.
“I’ll leave you guys alone and come back later.” The nurse was quiet, she laid the figure on the metal table, adjusting her body to a comfortable position. Saying a few more words to my mom, explaining the situation. She left.
Everyone got up to look at her, I waited patiently behind my family, watching and listening to what they had to say. All great things. I waited behind, being selfish for wanting my own time with her.
My last few minutes to spend with my head on her stomach to listen to her perfectly fine heartbeat, but jagged breathing. I didn’t care about being selfish at the time. I wanted this moment for me, and only me. I wanted to be the last words she heard to be mine, the last touch to be my fingertips, the last thing she would have left in the sad world to be me.
I lie my head near her’s, her left side of her face droopy as it no longer works. I tried to hold back my tears in order to talk to her.
“You’re an amazing cat. You know that, right? The best I could ever ask for. Out of all animals, you don’t seem like a cat, you act most like a dog…” I attempted to laugh. “I remember the day we got you, too tiny to even leave the comfort of your mother. You were the perfect angel then--laying down on my chest curled up, the size of a small peach, you just barely fit in the palm of my hand.”
I place a sweet kiss where the base of her ear connects to her head. “It was as if God gave you to me as a gift, but he wants you back. I understand, your time is up. He probably wanted you to li-live longer.” My voice cracked and some words didn’t come out right, they disappeared as I tried to continue speaking calmly. “The pain I saw when you were lying next to the curb, I thought you were dead. Whoever was as heartless as they were to leave you like that, as the sun beat down on you. I wish I knew.”
The nurse came in then. Telling us it was time. More waves of crying came, more than possibly ever.
I placed a hand on her stomach and another on her head, stroking softly. “I love you so incredibly much, so, so, so, so much, Blue. You’re the best and always will be. I’m sorry. I’m sorry I couldn’t do better.”
With a final kiss, I watched as the serum was injected into her and the stethoscope proved her to be gone.
My cat. My wonderful, kind, loving, beautiful cat was gone.
Leaving the vet's office was simple. A few hours later the sun was at its peak and brighter than ever, it felt warm and happy out. The late June weather was comforting to the before events, I felt slightly better knowing it would’ve been selfish of me to keep her alive. Silently I rode with my Mom, weeping quietly as my head was on the seat belt for support; the radio was on a low volume and the next to only sound was the humming of the car.