Sam the cat died almost 4 months ago. Well, "died" indicates that she did it all by herself, but we helped her along a little bit. She had lived over 18 years and in her last days she couldn't even sit up by herself. So, we had to make the decision we always knew we were going to have to make eventually and had her euthanized. It wasn't a pleasant thing to watch, and for days afterwards, we both felt like we had murdered her. That passed and then there were the weeks that I kept looking up at the landing when I came in the front door, expecting to see her sitting in her bed, looking at me.
Then that passed too. Sam now resides in a small box in the hall closet. I haven't opened the package to see what her ashes are contained in. I hope when I get up the nerve, it'll be something nice. And now that a few months have passed, we're getting used to not having her around.
Except Sam still lives on. Her memory lingers in a physical sense. The sense of smell. Now that the weather has finally become warmer, it's become obvious that Sam left us a gift to remember her by.
When I climb the stairs in the afternoon when I come home, house warm and stuffy from being closed up all day, the unmistakable odor of stale cat urine slaps me right in the face.
Apparently, in her final days, Sam was pissing everyplace on the landing except in her cat box. And since it was dark when we came home, we never saw the evidence.
Febreze doesn't work. Arm & Hammer Pet Odor Cleaner doesn't work. Next up, we'll trying renting a rug shampoo machine. If that doesn't work, it's new carpet time.
I'd like to think that if Sam had human characteristics and believed in the afterlife (would she have been Catholic or Protestant?), that she'd be looking down on us now from kitty heaven and saying "Kill me will you? YOU FUCKERS!"