When I was in 5th grade, my class put on a play. My mom was actually able to come watch and afterward she told me she had a surprise for me in the car.
We went out to the parking lot and I opened the car door to see nothing. After some searching, I found a tiny black and white kitten hiding under one of the back seats. My dad has always HATED cats so my first thought was "my mom is in so much trouble!"
But kitty stayed and we loved her. She was rescued by a teacher with her other siblings on the street. We named her Smudge and the very first day she got stuck behind the washer and was feisty as heck with our dog. It didn't take long to realize that this cat was the Kim Kardashian of kitties. She was spoiled, whiny, annoying, high maintenance, and would cuss you out when things didn't go her way. She wasn't always fun but she was our cat so we loved her, even when she bit into my inflatable chair and popped it.
She's given us several scares over the years from getting into fights with other cats and even what we believe was a raccoon. We made my parents pay lots to fix her because somehow, we loved that spoiled thing.
Amazingly, that cat has lived in our family for 17 years. It's always the crotchety ones that live forever. My siblings and I have been out of the house for a long time now but Smudge has been a joy to the grand kids. It was always a fun game to chase the kitty and see if you could force her out of her hiding places. She wasn't nice about it, but she put up with it, especially from Kennedy.
Today I went to drop Kennedy off at my parents house. Kennedy immediately saw the kitty and ran after her and my mom said, "Enjoy playing with the kitty, Kennedy, today is your last day".
"Um... What?!" I said.
"We're putting her down today," she answered.
I've known for a while that Smudge isn't doing so well but I didn't think this day was coming so fast. I looked at our cat who has begged and whined and never let you hold her or pet her and has pooped and thrown up all over the carpet and destroyed furniture and started to cry. I'm not sure how a cat who gave so little could have such a special place in our hearts. But she does. But it's also time to let her go and put her out of her misery. She's been whining a lot lately like she's in pain, she can't see, she's old, her pee reeks which is a sign of kidney infection, and she's getting skinnier and skinnier. It's time to let her be free.
We're all pretty sad about it and I think it's kind of surprising to us all. I think part of us will miss her. It's sad to see a family pet go.
Goodbye, little hair ball. We loved you.