Friday, August 24, 2018

Booty Retrospective Day

It has been just over a year since we lost Booty to mouth cancer (the actual condition and not a euphemism for eating vegetables). Between a one-month-old baby and the tail end of my job at the software startup, it was not an easy time, and I definitely cried. I recall going to bed that day at 6 PM after vigorously steam-cleaning Booty's drooly end-of-life dens simply because I was done being awake for day. (This was also the day I got 11 hours of sleep as a new dad). Thankfully, Annie came out from LA soon after and helped Rebecca take care of Maia, allowing me a little extra time to get my psyche back in order.

I did not expect to get as emotional as I did over a cat because, at the end of the day, it's just a cat. I love cats but I'm one of those people that take cats to the vet only when they're sick and do the best home care I can the rest of the time (Amber hasn't had a rabies update since 2005). If there was ever a situation where I had to choose between paying for a cat surgery or taking care of my human family, I'd pick the humans every time with minimal guilt.

I guess Booty was different because she spanned multiple discreet eras of my life, from the conclusion of my life as an occasional composer in Florida, to my quiet bachelor years looking for love in the wrong places, to my life with Rebecca (who eventually became Booty's real true love). I didn't feel as strongly when Kitty died and probably won't be overcome when Amber dies (sorry, Amber!).

Booty was a great cat, but she also made Amber into an end table cat. Jealous for any signs of affection, Booty would consistently prevent Amber from getting close to any humans for naps or snuggles or other Booty-centric activities. Once Booty was gone, Amber transformed into a much more cuddly cat almost immediately. She started by sleeping on Rebecca's pillow right next to her head, and graduated to always napping with Rebecca in the bed or on the couch. Though never as food-oriented as Booty, Amber now meows for breakfast in the morning, conspicuously near the sleeping baby room as a form of blackmail.

There is no real point to this post other than to note that pets will unexpectedly and immeasurably enrich your life, either with loyalty and affection or a 3 AM vomit all over the bedspread. Also, my definition of a pet implicitly includes the word "mammal" -- snakes are not pets.

tagged as deep thoughts, cats | permalink | 3 comments


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