I'm sad to say that we lost Sadie in the early hours last Saturday. We knew she was dying, it was just a question of when and how. It was our greatest hope that she would go at home, as she hated going to the vet's office. Thursday her breathing seemed to get worse and she had stopped eating. We had made an appointment Saturday afternoon to possibly have her put down. Gentle to the end, Sadie spared us that terrible decision. We were with her as she drew her last breath, sending her off with as much love as two people could carry.
We miss her terribly, and the boy seems to be continuously on the lookout for her. Betty, even, who barely tolerated the two other cats, seems especially tender lately. I keep catching bits of shadow or shapes in the corner of my eye and turning, expecting to see Sadie there. The mornings are lonelier without her badgering me for her scoop of Fancy Feast. My feet are colder at night.
Here's a picture of the real Sadie, cleaning the boy. I've never felt that my scribblings of her really ever did her justice. She's the first of the cats I ever included in my little cartoon adventures, and over the years I tried to develop and improve the pale approximation of the real thing. The real Sadie is far more complex than I could hope to describe.
Secretly, she was my favorite. I love all of them, but Sadie was the only one that made you earn her trust and affection. It was apparent to Kirsten and I that Sadie had been mistreated before she reached us. She was friendly, but was always ready to bolt. She hated to be handled or picked up. She peed in the bathroom sink. She was a challenge to love, sometimes, but the reward: one evening you'd be tucked into the couch, feeling low, and she would find you, jump up onto the couch with you and curl up around your feet. She'd then look up and give you a look that seemed to say "Yeah, I know." Then she'd purr that beautiful, ragged purr of hers.
Goodnight, Sadie. Sweet, Sexy Sadie, Mighty Huntress. Adopted mother to Darcy and Hutch. Shredder of paper, eviscerator of dirty socks, biter of fingertips. We'll miss you, but you've earned your rest.