horizontal hurdles, no more

A little while ago I wrote about the challenges I navigate throughout the night in the quest for sleep.  Those challenges, namely, my son, my husband, and my cat, have decreased by one.

On January 13, I said goodbye to Reef.

Without question, it was the most difficult decision I have ever had to make, and it was the saddest day of my life.

Like most indoor cats, Reef had an intense dislike of being anywhere but at home.  I would have to trick him into his travel carrier to get him to the vet, and then pry him out of it once we got there.  Knowing this, there was no way I was going to have his last moments spent anywhere but at home, in my arms.

Our wonderful veterinarian and her technician came to our home.  With kindness and compassion, they explained what they would do, and what I should expect at each step. They gave me time and space to rock Reef in my arms as the sedatives took effect.

During those precious, final cuddles, with my tears raining down on him, I whispered to Reef how much I love him, and how much I would miss him, and how I hoped he could forgive me.

My son must have sensed that this was a somber time for his family as he did not make a single demand for attention.  He just looked on from the warm comfort of his daddy’s arms.

With Reef gone, our house feels…emptier.  Amazing how one little cat can bring so much life and energy and fun and joy to a home.  For the first few nights afterwards, I woke at odd hours, expecting to do a horizontal hurdle, or to comfort him during a confused moment of nocturnal howling.  Funny how the moments that can bring so much irritation can be moments you end up missing.

Reef was with me for 17 and a half awesome years, since I was 20.  Saying goodbye to him broke my heart into a million tiny pieces, and while time is helping me to heal, I know there will always be a Reef-size hole in my world.

I would like to extend my sincerest thanks to Dr. Hillary Butler of MacKay Animal Clinic in Whitby.  You always took such good care of my little guy, right up to the very end.


2 thoughts on “horizontal hurdles, no more

  1. I know exactly how you feel Kelly, I had to go through this with my old cat, named Greyman
    (or mostly,” Mummy’s baby pussycat boy”) when he was the same age as Reef. I picked him from a neighbours litter in 1986 and took him home at six weeks old, my best boy for over
    17years, going deaf in the latter stages and finally too ill to go to the toilet etc.
    It’s a heartbreaking decision to have to make and the guilt is overwhelming, I still think of him and miss him 12 yrs on, although my 11 year old wee Tabby girl, Chilli has filled the hole quite nicely. Until I got her, I constantly thought I saw him out of the corner of my eye, or thought I felt him jump up on the bed in the night, I missed him so much.
    Time does heal, and you have your hands full with the wonderful Harry, but Reef will always have a place in your heart.
    With heartfelt sympathy and much love to you all, Lindsey x

    Liked by 1 person

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