6 February, 2007, 720 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Probably the hardest thing in the world is watching someone die.  I mean, they have life, and you think you can do something to help them–they still have a fighting chance.  There’s hope in those last moments.  But sometimes, there’s nothing you can do.  But if “What Sarah Said” is true…then I have experienced love.  Because he was alive in my hands one minute…and then he was completely beyond my grip.

Since counting helps me to focus, I’m going to listen to songs like “Accidental Deth” and number my points about his death that have been floating around inside my head for the past hour.   They’re not numbered in any order.  Just, I might be slightly OCD.

1.  From the standpoint of an animal rights activist (maybe I’ve done far less than many other activists, and maybe I’m underage, but I’m an activist nonetheless), it’s painful to see an animal suffering.  That’s the whole reason I went vegetarian–I watched thePETA videos, and whether or not I agree with every aspect of the organization, I do know that those animals are unhappy, and I know that despite what “The Fairly Oddparents” says (Mark’s planet, y’know?), there are universal standards for happiness.  It was an experience I’ve never had before–having an animal who has been very prominent in my life, to die in my hands.  I felt bad.  I knew I had tried to help him out.  It killed a part of me, though, to have him die in my hands.  I don’t feel like I let him know enough how much I love him.

2.  I saved him from dying earlier in his life.  My cousins didn’t want him anymore; they were just going to let him die, but me being an early activist, I took him in without my mother’s consent and pledged to take good care of him.  He would have died this summer if I hadn’t offered to take him.  I was really excited to have saved a life, even one of a small creature who liked to bite the hand that fed him.

3.  I feel horrible, though, because while I generally took good care of him, I slacked off sometimes.  I didn’t get him actual rat food; I gave him Kraft cheese and  fresh veggies.  I mean, yes, he loved it, but processed food probably wasn’t too good for him.  And although I’d read earlier on that rat food wasn’t too great either…I should have still gotten him some.  Occasionally, I skimped on getting him food and I forgot to get him water, but for no longer than a day on the food and an hour on the water.  I am being honest because it will make me feel better.  My mom had to remind me to clean his cage a lot, and the last time I did it, this weekend, I had a hissy fit cause it was too cold to wash it down outside.

4.  I’m afraid that either his dirty cage (it was not like “I’m rolling in my own feces” the last time I cleaned it, but I wouldn’t have licked the bottom of it or anything) or perhaps an unwashed stick of broccoli may have made him sick, and that just kills me.  Cause he was my responsibility.  He was old, but I’m not willing to throw the blame on fate.

5.  He liked to climb up his cage’s rungs and look at me at night, and when I let him run around, he would not come out unless I opened the top door to his cage, not the front door.  I suppose it has something to do with security and the top door resembling a burrow of sorts.  He liked to hide behind my TV stand and just chill out there, and sometimes find my feet and nibble them.  That kept me unnerved, and I tried to keep my feet propped up and out of his way, cause he was an explorer.

6.  Whenever the cats came into my room, which, I now realize that if I was a good caretaker (I hate the word “owner.”  I did not own him.  I took care of him.), I would have kept the cats out of my room to the best of my ability the whole time he was alive.  But he got defensive of his territory, and whenever they stuck their noses up to his cage to gaze at him hungrily, he’d take a swipe at them with his little claws, and they’d jump back a few feet, scared shitless.  What a champion.

7.  He was a really nice creamy white colour with extremely light creamy brown all over the place.  He had big dark eyes and orange teeth that chattered a lot when he was happy.  When I got him the humongous cage that takes up a good amount of my room instead of a little hamster cage, he kept running back and forth, and his teeth would not stop chattering.

8.  Sometimes, in the middle of the night, I’d wake up for no reason and then find him sitting right near my face on my bed, just exploring.  For a while, I was freaked, cause I didn’t know how he got on my bed (I knew how he got out of his cage, though–rats are nocturnal, so sometimes, I’d just leave his top cage door open so he could scurry around at night), but I’d always let him keep crawling around as long as he didn’t wake me up.  I later found out that he used to get on top of his cage, on the corner nearest my bed, and he’d jump like a cat or a sugar glider.

9.  Jordan and Tim and I think Derek liked him.  Well, Jordan was more amused by/terrified of him, and Tim loved him and he loved Derek.

10.  Talking to Alexis online about pets is helping me cope…a lot.

11.  Derek pointed out that I am using a lot of defense mechanisms such as false happiness and laughing hysterically to try and get through this.  It’s true.  And then other moments, I’ll find myself reduced to literally rolling on the floor, burying my face in the carpet, bawling my heart out.

12.  Connor not acting gushy is helping, too.

13.  Derek being here in general, as well as talking and listening to me and helping to distract me, is relieving.  I mean.  He’s not here.  He’s online.  And man, just thinking about the way Divya was when she found out Pepper died brings tears to my eyes, cause I know she’ll be infinitely supportive.

14.  I think I’m feeling a little tired from all this eventfulness.  When I said I wanted something bad to happen, to come in and fuck things up…maybe, maybe I should have been careful what I wished for.

I hope Louie’s happy.


2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

I’m sorry you lost your pet. I know how it feels, but then again my dog never died in my hands..he was just put to sleep.
I like to think when animals die, none of them go to hell [how can they? theyre animals] and theyre all happy and having a good time.

I would offer more condolences, but I know it probablly hurts to dwell on the subject…hope you feel better


Comment by laurrasb

:”””””( i am really really sorry that louie had to go. but i promise that it’s not your fault at all, so please don’t blame yourself. you took good care of him. i don’t think that the possibility of one brocolli piece or a short time without water would have killed that brave critter- maybe something was up with him medically that nobody knew about, that nobody could have helped even if they knew- but he’s out of any possible pain now. and he’s definitely in a better place, i’m sure he knew you loved him. your wish for something to mess up stuff didn’t cause this to happen!!! you didn’t want this specifically to happen, so there’s no way that louie had to leave for that reason.
i wish i’d read this sooner, like this morning or something. *giant blubbery whale of a hug* call or email or DO SOMETHING if you want to talk.

Comment by divya

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