It’s been a long time since we talked to George (Harrison), but he showed up today. Just when we needed him.
Sweetie and I have made the very difficult decision to help Sunshine leave her body, which will be at noon(ish) tomorrow, PST. We would appreciate your love and prayers.
Sunny is not in pain, but is very weak and sleepy. We want to spare her the experience of organ failure. We’re two hours from the nearest vet, and should she need emergency assistance, we’re four hours from the only emergency vet. We’re risking a painful experience for Sunny if we allow her to go on as she has been.
She’s ready to go and is stoic and accepting about it, much in contrast to her humans who are heartbroken. Our grown-up selves know it’s time, our inner children want her to live forever. It is never an easy decision to choose humane euthanasia for your animal friend.
George came to visit just as we were processing our emotions after calling our vet to make the appointment for tomorrow. I wanted to jot down some of the things he said, so I don’t forget them.
You are not “killing your cat.” In life, we may grant each other suffering, we can grant compassion. Watch the timelines. Here is one long, where Sunshine experiences a prolonged death brought on by her refusal to eat. Here’s another one, longer, where you fight death with all possible treatment. Here is her timeline where her life ends tomorrow. See how it folds? You are taking the conclusion, you are drawing it nearer.
When it was my time to die and my family stood around me, they withdrew all means to support life artificially in my body. They stood around me and did not think “We are killing him,” they knew it was my time to die.
We (Buddhists? Hindus?) Meditate on and in preparation for death, so that we may experience organ death, even painful death, with peace. Others rehearse death songs which they sing when they know it is their time. Sunshine is a master of meditation. She has made her decision, and see how she chooses not to eat? She likes her treats, but she doesn’t eat enough to keep herself alive. She refuses medication, and she accepts the decline in her body.
Why doesn’t she simply leave her body? Well, if it were that easy, with life so hard on earth, we wouldn’t bother to live through strep throat or broken bones! Our consciousness is tied to physical bodies securely, and it must be peeled away. Where death is protracted over time, the body itself will fight for its continued existence, while the soul lies waiting to be released. That’s why we meditate in preparation, so that our passing, although painful, may not be distressing to us, should it occur over a long period of time.
We grant each other kindness, compassion and sometimes suffering. Even love can cause suffering, there’s no avoiding it! The transition you are arranging for your friend tomorrow is a kindness that will be considered a human right in two hundred years. Humans of the future will look back on the barbarians of this century and wonder how on earth a loving people would treat even the unwilling, even those fading inevitably towards their end.
Love is holding on, love is fighting for, eh?
Thanks George. The conversation went on from there, with metaphors for heartbreak and Sunshine chiming in about how she will stay in our house until a kitten body is ready for her. She can teach the kittens in spirit, and live in our house as Mocha (the big dog) does.
During this conversation, Rupert sat on Sweetie’s chest and said, “I will fix your heart.” He stayed there for an hour, then left to wrestle with Mikey and then passed out, asleep, in the sunlight. Recharging after some hard work.
The timing of this, as usual, seems oddly perfect. I had vacation planned for this week, so there is plenty of time to be present for Sunshine and for each other. Mocha passed away on the last day of a week-long vacation I had with her, and Leo passed away on the last day of a long weekend.
Send us some love, please. Especially Sunny.