site index
                          [Picture of the Day logo]

Picture of the Day
January 9, 2022


for most of her long life, miso's had free outdoor access, but since we got back from philly she's chosen to stay mostly inside, which is good because she's too frail and addled to wander about unsupervised. now she wants out again and has been keeping us up all night meowing in the hall or scratching at locked catdoor. our usually tightlipped kitty is suddenly vocal and demanding. so this is what it's like to have a baby, i guess--sleep depriving wails all through the night. i'm reminded of my mother on her deathbed, who, drugged and limp, suddenly leapt up and said, eyes glazed and unseeing, "i've to get out of here!" it took all my strength to ease her back down, whispering, "yes, yes, you can go now." and she did. miso, too, seems ready for her final exit. she still has some spark but she's in late stage kidney disease and we don't want her to get to a point where things get ugly. we wish she would tell us in no uncertain terms, but we're left to guess how she's feeling. we're halfway hoping to wake up one morning to find her on the couch no longer breathing, wishing she would just let go so we don't have to make the decision for her. her decline has been so gradual we keep readjusting to the new normal, lowering the bar fractionally, deluding ourselves that it can't be that bad because she's still doing the baseline things--eating, pooping, getting excited for treats; she's a little stiff and gimpy but ignores the booster step we set by the couch; can still jump from chair to table and then straight back to floor. but she's become withdrawn, and more telling than her broader motions is the difficulty with which she lies down, the awkward postures she settles for. we keep begging her to speak, to give us a sign, and maybe she's thinking: what the hell do you think all this meowing's about? it's so hard to say goodbye, to have to decide, but it looks like we're going to have to make that dreaded call any day now.