Sandy was affectionately called The Purrmeister. (Well, along with Fuzzbutt, Puddin’, Put-Put and whatever else fell out of my mouth that day.) But it was a well-earned title. You could sometimes hear her purr from across the room. She’d purr when you groomed her, even though she hated it. Sometimes she’d even purr before your hand was actually on her. Hence the other nickname, Lovebug.
I laid down on the couch and let her just lie on me for the better part of an hour while I petted her. She didn’t purr until the last 10 minutes or so. And I felt it more than I heard it. She purred for a few minutes last night when both Tim and I were petting her. But mostly she lies around. She looks pretty content, if you ignore the rate that her diaphragm is moving… and how hard it’s puffing to push out the breath.
Tim and I are both acutely aware of how it feels to be unable to catch your breath. He has had severe asthma all his life. Plus a couple of instances of pneumonia and some pleurisy. I had the ventilator in the hospital — with a tube that slipped out twice while I was paralyzed and unable to do anything — and, more recently two bouts of bronchitis. Just in case I needed a refresher course, I guess. So we have a pretty good idea of how she must be feeling. It’s not good.
She’s also super lethargic. She’s gotten out of bed of her own accord once today. It was to walk to the water bowl. Otherwise, she sometimes sits up, but mainly just to take a few bites of food. After which she turns 180 degrees and puffs some more. She’s propping her paws up a lot on the edge of her bed. We think it’s to take pressure off her lungs.
In short, this is no life.
I had hoped to have more time with her — a week, at least. But it hurts me to see her like this. So tomorrow, I’m going to try to suck it up and take her in after work. Then at least I’ll have the weekend to get over the (initial) mourning.
I desperately want more days with her. Hell, I want years with her. But if we don’t take her in tomorrow… we’re just selfish. And I’ve always promised myself I would never put my needs above hers when it came time. Unfortunately, that time is far sooner than anyone hoped.
So tonight and tomorrow there will be lots of lap time and petting. So we can make sure she knows just how absolutely and utterly we love her when she closes her eyes for the last time.