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Saturday, January 9, 2010

A Small Hiatus

Scheduling posts here has made it easy to look as if I've been here 100% the past week.  But I've been hit by something unexpected: the death of our kitty.

A couple of years ago, she had to be rushed to the vet and different specialists because she wasn't eating or drinking water.  The diagnosis: bad kidneys.  She was only 3.  We thought the worst was over, really, she turned back into her old, ultra-hyper self as if nothing had happened.  And so, we went back to life as normal.  She didn't want a special diet which may have prolonged her life in hindsight, but the vet agrees: quality over quantity.

Tuesday night she became very ill.  She was so ill the vet was called the next day to schedule an appointment.  Komi wasn't eating or drinking again.  This time it was much, much worse.  When she finally went in Thursday afternoon, she was very weak and agitated, but never growled or hissed at me.  Ever.  That's the kind of girl she was to me: patient and loving.  I'm the only one who she lets pick her up any time of day, no matter what.  She never bit me; she always made time for me.

After some fluid hydration and an anti-emitic, she came home and, weak as she still was, went around one last time to, we think, say her good-byes.  On Friday morning, her tests results came back.  Her kidneys were worse, and that's the nice way of putting it.  She was taken to the UC Davis small animal clinic (I couldn't handle going, I am now struggling with that decision) where they were going to do further tests and determine if it treatment was best for her, if it would help, if it was humane to prolong her life further.

When my brother and his girlfriend came home, it was without Komi.  As someone who, like all of my family, had a unique bond with her, I was devastasted.  I did not get to say good-bye.

They brought me back her collar and explained that she was most likely born with bad kidneys; there was nothing we did wrong or could have done better.  The vets were all amazed she was in as good condition as she was physically (and that she had lived this long) and all assumed, before they were told otherwise, that she was a much, much older cat, three times her actual age.  Komi was only 5.

One kidney was virtually useless.  The other had been overcompensating this entire time and was running at 20%.  In the end, to ease her pain, she was sedated and went peacefully.

Komi was only 5.

This is hitting me particularly hard.  To be honest, I do not much feel like writing reviews.  Komi was my guardian angel.  She kept me company when I was home alone, she ran into my room the moment I woke up (she slept with me solid for 3 years, but would typically leave an hour before I was ready to get up myself) with a purr and a meow for good morning.  She sat with me (and on the laptop) for everything I wrote--review, essay, anything--and followed me around the house, helping me do the most mundane tasks (wrap presents, open boxes, open the closet, clean).

I don't know why I'm explaining these things.  Clearly, my entire family has lost someone irreplaceable.  We're all feeling a huge loss.  Komi had such an enormous spirit and really, a generous heart and sense of humor.  She was my animal soul mate who always knew when I was sick or upset and came to comfort me.

The vets don't think she was in pain, except for the past couple of days.  And I think she was a happy cat over the years.  I'm happy we gave her the best 5 years we could (we got her the week "Revenge of the Sith" came out--I called her my Star Wars kitty).  If love could bring her back, healthy, she would be here.

What I need most right now is time.  She may have been my brother's cat, but cats are fickle and for most of her life, she made me feel extraordinarily loved.  I'll miss her devotion, her energy, but most of all: I'll miss her.

Please understand if I don't post for awhile.  My editor and one of my staunchest supporters is gone.  She will no longer approve my books with a sniff and rub of her cheek (my books she never bit--my brother's are a different story).  I need some time to gather myself.

Good-bye Komi.  You are already missed.

March 2005-January 8, 2010



Anonymous said...

I am so sorry to hear it. Losing a pet is losing a family member and I'm here if you need me.

eidolons said...

As a fellow cat lover, I offer you my deepest condolences. We've been fortunate to not lose any of our nine cats yet, but I know it will happen eventually. My heart breaks just thinking about it. I'll be thinking good thoughts for you. Take all the time you need - grief is never easy. *hugs*

Lily Child said...

*hugs* I am so sorry for your loss Erika. She was a beautiful kitty, from the sounds of it inside as well as out. Take all the time you need.

Anonymous said...

I'm so sorry to hear this. Cats always have a special place in our hearts, and your hiatus definitely understandable. She was a beautiful cat.


Erika said...

You are all wonderful. I thought I was ready to face your kindness and sweet thoughts without tears, but your words are so supportive I couldn't help myself.

Komi was and always will be a beautiful part of our family. It means a lot to me that everyone understands this.

From the bottom of my heart, thank you...

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