I had to put my cat to sleep this morning. She was 13 years old and that's the longest relationship I've ever had (or probably ever will).

I did ok at first because I knew it was the right decision, her kidneys had almost completely shut down. And I did well the whole time until they brought her back in the room after the sedative had been given. Then the vet asked me if I wanted a few minutes before the injection and I said no, please just go ahead. I was petting her and she started to give the injection and then the vet said this prayer for my cat the whole time. . . and that was it, I started crying. I'm not religious or spiritual by any means, but something about this vet saying such kind and wonderful things about my cat touched my dark black heart. Then she gave me a hug and I usually hate being hugged, hugs can feel so fake, but this one I appreciated.

It was over quickly, she didn't move or make any noise, it was peaceful. Her eyes stayed open. They told me to take as long as I wanted with her.

She was lying on this fluffy purple blanket and I petted her and kissed her forehead and told her she was a great cat and thanked her for letting me be her owner. Then I covered her up and the vet came back and she picked her up so very gently and took her away.

I paid for a cremation and they are disposing of the ashes. I wanted to take her home to bury her, but I live in an apartment now and I will be moving soon so it seemed disrespectful somehow. I also wanted her ashes to take home, but it was so expensive and I feel pathetic for not being able to afford it, but it is what it is.

Now I am home and her tufts of fur are still here (that cat could shed!) and food is still in her bowl and her litterbox is still here. I will take care of all of that today, of course, but right now, it just feels like she is in the other room and . . . she's not though.

Her name was Daisy, my cat. I always called her orange angry cat when I talked about her in my diary, but her name was Daisy. And she was with me for 13 years, a dozen apartmets, jobs, relationships, friends, cities and other pets. She was my constant. And she will be missed.

2010-09-11 at 12:27 p.m.