Pet tears

I accompanied Sita to the vet in a tearful farewell to her beloved cat Mooshi. The end of 2016 would also be the end of Mooshi.

Mooshi first showed up as an adorable peachy white kitten in Sita and Jim’s life in Salem. They lived with a bunch of friends next to the ‘real-cream-Bismarck’ donut shop on Bridge Street. I did buy the Bismarck once to make sure it was real cream (it was). I ingested its delicious 1000 calories. It resembled what is known in Holland as a ‘roombroodje.’ I used to consume these often when I was a high school student in Haarlem. I biked to and from school every day so those calories were used up daily – the Salem variety would take longer to burn up.

Mooshi traveled across the country when Sita and Jim tried out San Francisco. I remember the phone calls home along the road with Mooshi whining in the background. He stayed in their tent on some nights and on others was smuggled into cheap hotel rooms. The three of them then lived in their pricey one room apartment in the Castro section of SF. Half a year later they traveled back East, Mooshi still not liking road trips, and Sita and Jim preferring the East Coast after all.

Over the years Mooshi, always an indoor cat, moved less and less.  He messed up some nice couches sharpening his nails (for God knows what) and interrupted his sleep only to find a more comfortable (sunny) place and for taking care of essential body functions.

He didn’t care much for humans, especially not little ones and was very particular about who could pet him. Still, all those years, before the real babies came, Mooshi was Sita’s baby. Jim eternalized them in a lovely portrait.

Mooshi’s hairs and dander made it hard for Axel to stay overnight. He had to take special pills to manage the allergens.

Over the last few years Mooshi had developed diabetes which Sita and Jim valiantly managed with costly daily injections, making overnight trips more complicated as caretakers were needed who could do the injections. I remember the first time I did those and gave Mooshi 5 times the prescribed dose by mistake. Whether he got the injections or not, and in the right dose or not, they showed no visible difference. He kept peeing and pooping all over the place making life very difficult for everyone in his household. The cat was old and sick, and the decision to let him go seemed obvious to all but Sita and Jim.  They just couldn’t ‘play God’ as Jim called it.

Eventually, as 2016 came to an end, Sita and Jim had come to the same conclusion as all the parents that Mooshi had had a good and very long life but that it was time to go. I accompanied Sita to Mooshi’s final visit to the Northampton cat hospital. It was very sad; all those memories. We hugged and left Mooshi with the nice lady who gave Sita a box of Kleenex, understanding how hard it is to say goodbye to a beloved pet. On a happy note, Mooshi will never know what it is like to live under a Trump administration.

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