I'm so sorry Tom. Thinking about you and your family.I know I'm baring my feelings to a group of people I've never met, but my heart is absolutely crushed right now. I feel as if a giant hole has opened in my chest and is sucking me in. Unless the vet gives us reason to hope this morning, we will be saying goodbye to our precious 14 year old Tasha. It turns out she has been sick for a lot longer than I thought, but since she was still eating, playing, and socializing, I just didn't see it . . . or maybe I was in denial and didn't want to see it. I don't know.
After she started showing signs of being really sick week before last, we've been furiously working to get her better. I had hope Thursday and Friday, when she ate 11 small meals in a two day span. But Saturday she only ate once, and yesterday I was able to get her to eat twice. She was awake at 2:30 AM today, crying over and over to be let into the back yard, a place she has always loved. We don't allow the pets out there without one of us present, and I'd never let her out at night, out of concern for predators, and that she might be so sick she'd leap the fence and disappear into the woods. Even as sick as she's been, she still has impressive leaping ability. Although it is not good for her, I gave her a couple tablespoons of milk early this morning. It seems to be the only thing that satisfies and calms her.
I've slept very, very little recently. I think I am operating by sheer force of will, just trying to keep my mind busy. We've been through the illness and death of other pets, and I'll get through this, but right now I just feel like all of the joy has been sucked from my existence. Those of you with pets will understand.
Here are a few photos. The first is Tasha in much better times. Playful, ornery at times, curious, and you can just see that sweet personality in her face.
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Tasha as a kitten.
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Tasha and Oliver could be real rivals at times, but when it came to nap time, they often curled up together on a chair, a bed, or the back of the sofa.
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Tasha and Gerta, who passed away on Martin Luther King Day 2015.
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Katie, Tasha, and Molly. Katie passed away 8 years ago this July, from the same renal failure that has overcome Tasha. Katie was a bit over 20 years old. Tasha is 14. Molly, 16 years old, is still active and feisty as ever. A recent blood screening on her showed no signs of illness.
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A couple of Molly and Tasha when Tasha was just a kitten. She and Molly used to be really close, but that changed as Tasha reached adulthood. They were both jealous over me, often wanting on my lap when the other was already curled up there. Odd though, over the past year or two I've sometimes seen them curled up together on the love seat in the previous image, and they would sometimes go out that far kitchen door above to our elevated screened porch and both curl up for a nap.
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Finally, an image I call "Our Girls", with Molly, Katie, Gerta, and Tasha sacked out on the screened porch. For some reason, they loved it out there when it was hot outside.
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If you have followed this far, thanks for your patience. I don't have much hope that the vet is going to give us any good news. I think I have been grieving Tasha for about 10 days now, desperately clinging to any sign that she was getting better, sinking into despair when she went the other way. Even yesterday, she went into the back yard with me and our other pets, and several times came and snuggled into my lap. The house - and my soul - already feel much emptier. We are both going to miss that sweet baby.