Everyone said I would know when it was time, and tonight was the night. Nurse Sis and I loaded Calliope into her crate, after Stat and Hero came in to say goobye to her. We went over Laurel Canyon, and we were both crying so hard I asked Brenda if I was going to die on Laurel Canyon (same street where the drunk driver hit me ten years ago).
Calliope always meows like crazy in a car, but tonight she purred and was so calm I opened the crate and pet her the whole way. Bren went in and arranged all the money and logistics, and kept telling the worried staff she was the calm one even while she was crying in the waiting room.
She came and got me and we went right in, and the vet tech started crying (the other vet tech yesterday cried when I couldn't get an appointment...I seem to have a way with these poor people...I could never do what they do so well and sweetly).
Everyone was great to us, even the new guy who walked in scared of us and told us nineteen years was a good long life for a kitty. Then the nice lady doctor came in and explained the pink shot. Nurse Sis and I pet Calliope and told her we loved her while she went to sleep. We stayed with her until they picked her up, and it was this other female tech who looked at what a wreck I was and told me "It was just her shell. She'll be back someday. My dog came back to me." Which was such a kind thing to say, and used to be exactly what I believed in before my car accident. And somehow in that moment it was something I could believe again.
Brenda and I drove home, and talked about how we knew it was the right time, and it was so peaceful and so much better than her dying alone in the middle of the night, or drowning in her water bowl that Brenda found her collapsed in yesterday.
And I said, "Don't think I'm psycho or need wish fulfillment, but I kind of feel like Calliope's on my lap right now." And Brenda said, "Well, she watched out for you for nineteen years, so I imagine she would want to check in and make sure you're okay."
We were stopped at an intersection and I looked at the car in front of us. I pointed at the license plate frame. Brenda read it:
"So Long, And Thanks For All the Fish."
Who knew Pissy had the Fies Family wit? That's one funny cat dancing up to heaven in the moonlight.
So long, Calliope. We love you.