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Sunday, October 18, 2015

A Crappy Day Leaves Me Very Sad

It's Friday night as I write this - six hours afterwards. Six damn hours after my cat, Daffy, died.

And make no mistake about it, she was mine, as I was hers.

I came home late from work today. Traffic. Store to buy ice cream for everyone after dinner while we were watching the baseball game. Thinking ahead.

When I arrived home, no cat came to greet me, so I assumed she was outside in the backyard. When we adopted her recently, she was six years old and 22 pounds. Stress eating. I know what that is like.

Immediately fitting in with the family and especially me, she immediately began dropping the weight.

She slept at the foot of my bed every night. She would come in and annoy me every time I went to the bathroom - purring around my feet. She would meow as soon as I arrived home, because I was the one who always let her out for a few hours. She would just sit outside on the patio.... maybe stalk a few birds...

She was down to 15 pounds... and had caught a mouse in the shed and somehow caught a bird - both of which she attempted to bring into the house as a present for me.

I didn't like that part of her. Live and let live and all that crap. I would never let her out, except that her previous owner must have allowed her to be an outside cat - so she would howl until she was let out.

Friday, she howled enough for my wife to let her out before I got home.

So... after greeting everyone else, I immediately went to the back door and spied her through the window in the door squatting some four feet away, with her back to me.

I knocked gently on the glass - and I swear it's true, she did a double take! I laughed! It was so human a thing. A double take! Seriously - the whole double head turn in surprise!

She was happy to see me, and she meowed loudly and got up to come in quickly as I opened the door.

She was my purr pal. She loved it when I stroked her back and go right up her rigid upright tail. It's something I try to do as she winds around my legs.

As I move to go up the three stairs to the main floor, she has to lead me up... stopping to eat at her bowl as I chat some more and tell everyone about the double take.

I go upstairs and change. She waits outside in the hall as usual, as she knows my next stop is the bathroom. Even if I don't have to go, I know I have to sit on the toilet and let her purr around me for a few minutes. Rituals must be observed, after all.

As I stand up and go to wash my hands, that's her cue to leave. I guess she thinks I might splash her - but never on purpose.

It's then that I hear and awful tumble and a crash... and it's from the landing between the main and upper floor... I race over and see her lying on her side. Daffy fell down the stairs.

I rush over and pet her head and body gently - and she moans... moans... and moans once more.

This isn't good. She continues to moan as my wife comes up to see what's going on... Hudson wants to come up and see, but I tell him not to.

She fell down six stairs and landed on the landing. Colette says her neck might be broken.

She gasps a few times as she struggles to breathe.

How does a cat fall down the stairs? How? How!

I can't watch this... I walk past her hoping she'll get up... I go into my room and swear and cry a bit... wipe my tears and go back out. It's only 20 seconds - maybe more.

Daffy ... twitches... it's an effing death rattle... and then stiffens.

She's gone. Eyes glazed, lips blue... my friend... damn this is tough to write...

When all else felt like crap, she made sure it wasn't.

This whole thing is just absolutely ridiculous. How does a cat fall down the stairs?

This blog has nothing to do about Japan except that every night at around 1AM, she would come into the computer room where I write these blogs and run around my feet until I stopped writing and would pet her - it was my sign that it was late and that we had to go up to sleep or I'd never be functional at work.

While I would be in the bathroom, she come in and we'd do our routine... I sit, but have to open the door to her litter box so she could go, too. She could do it herself, but rituals... it was one way she made me feel needed - besides being the guy who feed and watered her and cleaned out her box.

She'd lead the way into the darkened bedroom - I'd sometimes trip on her as I felt my way to my side of the bed... and after I'd get in, she'd wander below on the floor, waiting for my hand to snake out from under the blankets to pet her. She'd go and stare out the window... waiting until I turned away from her... then she'd jump onto the table, and tap me on the shoulder. If I was super-tired and already half asleep, it would scare the crap out of me... otherwise, if I was awake, she'd let me know she was getting ready and I'd have to play with her for another minute before she'd go and sleep beside my feet... taking up a lot of room... but I'd move over. Rituals.

Every day...

How the hell does a cat lose her balance like that?

Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how did you enjoy the play?

I feel lost... in so many ways. Everything is off.

I can't stop weeping as I write this.

When we got her 16 months ago, she was Daphne, but she was Daffy to me. 16 months? It doesn't seem that long. It wasn't long enough.

Anyhow... HERE is where I first introduced her back on June 8, 2014. I got her down to around 15 pounds... no stress, I guess.

I miss Daffy.

Andrew Joseph
I took the photo above on September 15. It's Saturday now, and I reason she must have been licking/cleaning herself close to the edge of the stairs and over she went, probably breaking her neck on that first step - else she would have corrected herself.  While she lay there, not once did she move her legs, indicating a broken neck. I can make these guesses now, a few days later (Tuesday), but the sting remains. Every time I walk past certain areas in the house, I expect to see her there. I haven't slept well since the accident, but I do thank all of you well-wishers who didn't need to say anything, but did anyway. I appreciate it.


  1. {hugs} That cat knew it was loved and you brought each other joy. And in the end, isn't that what life is about?

    1. Thank - you, that is very kind of you to say.
      I'm a few years shy of the age when my mother died - and being that sort, I dwell on such things.
      I think that with death, we mourn not for the ones lost, but for ourselves and what we have lost.
      I have nothing but happy thoughts regarding the life of my mother and all my lost pets...
      So fresh, this cat was part of my daily routine and I guess I just feel a bit lost at the moment. Still kindda weepy-eyed when I dwell...

  2. So, so very sad to read this just now Andrew. I know how dear she was to you. We're going through some near end-of-life stuff with Curly too, so I totally feel you. Big hugs from the east end.... - c/A

    1. Thanks. I need the hugs. It's three days later and I'm not so weepy - perhaps because I'm at work wearing a suit and tie for the first time since my first week here 10 years ago... having lunch with someone - so I don't get to act all morose around people, as everyone keeps commenting on the suit and tie look.
      Still... everything I do at home... it included the cat... she'd mooch food, sit on my lap, meow to go outside, join me whenever I went up stairs, follow me down... She'd disappear during between 7 and 8PM, be lying on Hudson's bed, disappear for 30 minutes... and then always... always come up when I read to him, lying on his bed.
      It was like a had a dog again.
      The next puss has some big boots to tray and fill. Just not now.

  3. So sorry to hear about your poor kitty. We cried so hard after reading your sad story!
    My wife and I have 3 kitties of our own.We feel for you. No matter how long they live, it is never long enough! .Again, sorry for the loss of your little companion.

    1. Thank-you very much. I'm sorry I made you guys cry. Writing is my outlet for all the bad stuff. But you, your wife, FFF and c/A above have helped me tremendously.
      Thank-you for taking the time to write. Enjoy your kitties! :)

  4. I'm so sorry for your loss. Save another in her memory, you never know who is waiting for your love. xoxox

    1. Thanks-you! I will save another cat and do my best to protect it... I'm not sure when, but soon. Thanks for your support!

  5. My condolences. We just lost our Stormy.

    1. It sucks, doesn't it Pat? My condolences to you as well. You looking to get another cat soon?

    2. Not in the near future. We lost one of our dogs Ted last year and with Stormy gone we are down to one dog, one cat, two rats and one snake. With the kids moving out, the cat and the snake are one daughters, and the rats well into their senior years we will be left with just Carmen the chihuahua (and several pet sized slowly healing holes in our hearts). When she goes, we'll likely take a break - it will be the first time we are pet free in 25+ years. After, that we'll likely be back at the humane society looking to adopt because we're suckers that way. :)