We’ve done it again, we’ve gone off and became quiet again. The past week in the Kremer household has been strangely quiet and a sad state of affairs. Last week Monday was one the hardest days I have ever been faced with in my life. The whole notion of what I had to decide on still leaves my heart with a throbbing hole that will never be filled but thankful leaves my mind full of fond memories.
After coming home from our trip last year and stepping back into the routine of everyday life, we came home from lunch with our wonderful house and cat sitter, Jenny, to find that our baby boy, Ralph was not acting like himself. The night was filled with constant worry and blank dreams and we tapped fingernails against the wood table waiting for Ralph’s vet appointment.
The vet sent Andy and Ralph home with a tough decision that hung heavy on our shoulders. Ralph was diagnosed with acute pancreatitis and chronic kidney failure. Andy was told that Ralph could come back and stay the night at the clinic hooked up to IV’s for fluid that would flush and hydrate his kidneys and help with the pancreatitis. Heartbroken over the decision because this visit would eat a huge chunk of our savings account, but we knew we were not ready to say goodbye to our best friend and sent him back to the vet with high hopes.
Over the course of ten months we tended to Ralph needs, Andy was taught on how to give Ralph his weekly IV fluids at home, and I fed Ralph everyday with his wet food and Epakitin powder (kidney supplement). Some days were much better than others and in the back of our minds preparing ourselves for when we had to say goodbye. Only I didn’t know that goodbye would come so fast and that I would be so alone.
Andy had left last week Sunday to head back to Vegas for more work training, and that day Ralph had just seemed different. We noticed when he got sick the first time he would do this weird thing with trying to get a drink of water, just pawing at the bowl, and barely skimming the bowl with his mouth. I knew something was wrong. Later that night a storm came through, and Ralph had never been a fan of thunderstorms, he startled me by relieving himself our bedroom floor, and Ralph (for the most part, besides his spite shits) had great litter box habits.
Monday morning came and Ralph was not getting any better. He wanted nothing to do with the basement where the litter boxes are kept and threw up the milk that was left in my cereal bowl. He had also started this strange constant lip smacking and drooly mouth. I called the vet and had an appointment for later that day.
The vet came in and said that his kidneys were most likely done for and that Ralph was extremely dehydrated. I honestly cannot recall what was said next because tears turned into sobs and I ached for Ralph and I to be anywhere else. I knew it was end but didn’t want to believe it, the vet left to give us some time. I called Andy and let him know what was happening.
It’s been a week and a half and everyday I yearn to hold Ralph on last time and to tell him how much he has changed me. Ralph wasn’t just a cat, he was part of the family who had emotions and a personality that made you wonder if he was a human in his past life. It was especially hard to even be in the kitchen because he loved human food so much. Cutting up chicken will never be the same. Plates and bowls will remain dirty. His meows still echo in my head, and my eyes playing tricks on seeing black shadows creeping along walls.
I know it gets easier as time goes on, but I also know that a void in my heart will always be there because that was Ralphie’s spot. I’ll never forget my little buddy.
I love you Ralphie cat and cannot wait for the day we can be together again!