Thursday, November 05, 2009

This isn't "GoodBye," It's "I'll See You Later..."

We put Jugi to sleep last Tuesday. I looked at him on the previous Thursday and I realized that it was time. I told Ryan we couldn't wait much longer. We called the vet on Monday (after playing a bit of phone tag with the vet doctor), and they said that they could do it the next day. Ryan put the phone down for a moment and asked me, "Are you ready for this?" I told him, "How can I EVER be ready for this??" The vet came, and had to sedate him twice in order to get him to calm down enough for the euthanasia injection. With so much sedation, poor Jugi had a hard time breathing, and he couldn't see me because his eyes were so hugely dilated, but I talked to him and petted his forehead the entire time. When he stopped breathing, I said to him, "I'll see you later, k?" That was when I let myself cry. I had promised him the night before that I would not cry during the whole procedure, because I knew it would sadden him and he needed me strong. I kept that promise, though it took every ounce of determination...and the minute the vet and assistant left (because we had it done at home, in the livingroom, with him looking out from his favorite view point window), I started bawling into Ryan's arms. The vet and tech had cried when Jugi stopped breathing. I was actually immensely thankful for that - it was comforting to know that they had not performed this procedure so many times that they were immune to the heartbreaking sadness of it. We buried him in the middle of my herb garden, with a large stone marker. The house feels so empty without him now. I keep thinking/expecting to see my beloved Sun God, and then I remember that I no longer have him. After spending about an hour crying, Ryan and I opened up the best, most expensive bottle of wine in our pantry, and drank to Jugi's honor. I have not had a half bottle of wine at one sitting in years...I definitely felt its effects, but at the same time, I needed something to take the edge off of the pain. I spent the entire day with him before the vet doctor showed up. We sat together, and he crawled into my lap and I petted him until he fell asleep. We gave him a final day in his beloved Solarium. I did everything I could to make his final days so full of happiness and love. In some ways, this situation was a blessing - it allowed us to say goodbye. I will always be thankful for that.

I am including some pictures of Jugi in his final day(s). These pictures, though they sadden me because he is obviously ill and suffering, make me smile because I know he is happy in them - even if it was just for a moment. Elaina phrased things best when she commented on that picture of me, Ryan, and Jugi. Tuesday I put her words into actions, and I enjoyed every moment I had left with my kitty. I know there will be other kitties in my future, but there will only ever be ONE Jugi...

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