Our summer has been flying by, and things are slowly but surely getting done. In fact, Will and I just returned home yesterday from the eastern part of the state where I had a workshop for my new job.
I also found out this morning that my application was accepted for the one beautiful pet-friendly complex in that college town. Let me tell you, that was such a relief...housing has been tough to find there.
Our joy was short-lived, however.
It became apparent at lunchtime that our sweet little ball of sass wasn't doing well...
Will first noticed that Licky was trying to "piddle" everywhere but her litter box, and that just wasn't like her.
She also wasn't getting any piddle out. L
Things rapidly went downhill from there. She kept trying to hide from us under the furniture which was completely bizarre because that cat always craved nonstop attention.
She became lethargic and began vomiting...and we knew.
I made a call to Maggie, and she called me back during her break. (Licky Lou is Maggie's cat...she got that cute little ball of fur when she was in third grade.)
She spoke softly to Licky and told me it was okay to do whatever needed to be done.
Will and I each took turns holding her and bawling our eyes out. How do you adequately say goodbye to someone you love so much and who has brought you so much joy?
We took her to our veterinarian friend who confirmed our fears: Licky's kidneys were shutting down.
Dr. Marcy looked at me and said, "You know I'm going to tell it to you straight like I would want to be told." She then whispered, "It's time."
I nodded my head and let the tears roll.
As the vet went to get the injection ready, I held that precious baby doll against me and looked out the window.
Licky Lou put her head against my shoulder and began to purr. I told her I loved her and that I was so thankful to have her in my life. I told her that I would have never survived this year of empty-nesting without her and how grateful I was for her help.
The veterinarian and the vet tech came in, and I gave Licky one last kiss as I placed her on the table. The fact that Licky Lou continued to purr kind of unnerved the kind-hearted doctor. Tears sprang to Marcy's eyes, and she said, "She is definitely at peace because she has always fought me every single time I've ever tried to examine her."
(You can read about Licky Lou's numerous vet appointments here.)
We chuckled and wiped away the tears as she gave Licky the injection.
I knew that sweet soul was gone when the purring stopped.
We brought her home and buried her next to her sister and the little Yorkie doggies she used to love to torment back in the day.
And while I wasn't planning on blogging this summer, I felt the need to document this sad event...this moment of our journey. We all commented that the blog was so important to us when Pookie Bear passed on because we could have pictures of her within minutes. We could read about her silliness and her crazy antics with just a few clicks of the mouse...and just remember.
It was also therapeutic for me to write about the last precious moments with that beloved sweetheart, and I felt that Licky Lou deserved the same.
All of you are an important part of our journey, too, and I wanted to share the sad news with all of her blog fans. She sat beside me as I wrote nearly every single post. Thank you all for the times you have asked about her and cared how she was doing.
There are also so many little things I don't want to ever forget.
--The fact that she demanded to talk on the phone every time one of the kids called. Seriously, she would sit on my lap and meow until I held the phone to her ear. She would then intently listen for a little bit and begin "talking" to the kids.
She would try it with other callers, but most people didn't find it nearly so charming. J
--The time the 7th graders wrote stories for me to read to her at night...yes, they worried that I was becoming the crazy cat lady. They had me take a selfie to prove that I really did read them to her. This was her reaction...
We all howled about that for days!
--After Will moved out and Pookie Bear was gone, Licky began sleeping with me. Every night she would climb in bed with me and put her head on my pillow facing me. If I rolled over, she would simply get up, climb over me, and hunker down on the pillow facing me. I learned not to fight it eventually.
She slept with me like that every night until Will came home. Then, she began dividing her time between our two rooms, and eventually, she camped out in the hallway because she couldn't quite make up her mind who needed her most.
Trust me when I say the pillow will feel quite empty tonight.
However, it does bring me some comfort to think of these two pumpkins together again...
....purring happily ever after.
"How lucky I am to have something that makes saying good-bye so hard."
--Winnie the Pooh
YOU WERE WORTH IT, OLD FRIEND, AND A THOUSAND TIMES OVER.
--Where the Red Fern Grows