When I was in 1st grade, I remember seeing a girl crying in the cafeteria. I found out that she was crying because her dog had died that morning. Now I, being seven without fully developed empathy, did not understand her tears. In my very limited opinion, it was only a dog. It’s not like it was family.
I didn't fully get why she was crying that day until I was 18 and my dad and I were at the vet’s office with our family dog, Jack. He had been sick for a while, and the vet had told us that he was in pain and they would have to put him to sleep. We had gotten him as a puppy at the end of that same 1st grade year, and over the years he became my best friend. Jack got me through a lot of difficult times. And as I stood there holding him in the office, petting him gently, I understood why the girl was crying on that day so many years ago. And, with my dad crying in a chair in the corner, I watched Jack close his eyes for the final time.
There were other pets, but there would never be another Jack.
But there was a Pants: the most wonderful and quirky cat, who was perfect for our most wonderful quirky family.
A few months ago, after a long and glorious life, Pants died. She was 18 by then, and she’d been sick for a while, but we always assumed she would get better. Because she always got better. She was just that stubborn. I mean, she beat kidney failure. What cat beats kidney failure? But one night as I held her, I noticed that she was little more than a mound of fluff and could barely open her eyes. I knew then that I wouldn’t hold her again. None of us would.
She died early the next morning, and we were heartbroken because Pants was a freaking awesome cat.
I meant to write this blog a week or so after her death, but nothing seemed right for a cat named Pants. She was the cat at the animal shelter that would never have been adopted if Maggie hadn’t come in when she first moved to Madison. Pants was loud, unattractive for a cat, and quite ornery. So of course, Maggie was instantly smitten with her and brought her home, and they lived as roommates for Maggie’s first year in Madison.
Then we got married, I moved to Madison, and we began a life together. The three of us. Then along came Chloe and Zoe, and our family was complete. With the cat who redefined what it meant to be a family cat: Pants.
There are so many things that I will remember about Pants, but I thought that here, I’d rather share some of the lessons she taught our family about life. And maybe, just maybe, you can learn something from Pants too.
Pants, you were our perfect thing. Thank you for everything you taught us. We’ll miss you forever.
Here it is. Steven's blog, where his thoughts about things are revealed. Good luck.