Every time I see a cat picture on Reddit or my facebook feed, I get the urge to go out and get a new cat. But all I have to do is think of Desco and the pain that fills the hole she left in my heart for that desire to vanish. I’m still mourning my Desco. My kids are still mourning my Desco. It’s not just the cat herself that I struggle with letting go, it’s the fact that she’s gone because of me, because of my decision, a decision I’ve come to greatly regret. Story time.
First the good. Desco came to us as a kitten, an abandoned kitten, fending for herself in the backyard of our apartment building. She’d jump onto our deck, meowing at the screen of our sliding glass door. Her mews for food were greeted with the excited cries of two young children and their cat loving mama. We fed her tuna and gave her water and she came back. Even after being shooed off the porch by a broom swinging grandma, Desco came back, this time to our front door.
Now you have to realize we lived in an apartment with security doors. So somehow this magical cat found her way inside and then found our door out of all the options in front of her. She turned down the right corridor and mewled out at the right door, how in the world could I not take her in after that?
So she became ours. She was not malnourished, nor was her thick fur matted or dirty, she looked like she’d been recently taken care of. But even after posting found kitten posters around the two apartment buildings, no one claimed her. I’m of the opinion someone moved and unable to take their cat with, left her. But we really had no way of knowing. So we named her, Desco after a video game character and we loved her. She loved us back. She let Evelyn, at the time a toddler, nearly suffocate her with hugs. I have tears in my eyes just thinking about her. She was ours for over a year.
So now I’ll get to the point of how we lost her. Management at the apartment building changed and we had issues with the new management. Some of it was our fault, and some of it theirs but ultimately we decided we needed to move. We found a place but we couldn’t bring Desco with. And so, even though it grieved me, even though it caused pain to my children, we let Desco go, bringing her to a no kill shelter.
A few days later, regret already filling my broken heart, my husband found her on the shelter’s webpage, a picture of her beautiful face filling his phone. They had renamed her some ridiculous name (like marshmallow or something, I don’t remember) and remarked how lovable she was. I desperately wanted to go get her back but doing so would be financially irresponsible as well as making our move to the new place impossible. So instead we checked back often and a couple days later she was adopted out again.
The kids still talk about her, a year later. They talk about her new home, and the new family that will love her like we did. While they hold no ill for my decision, they say they still miss her. I do too. And so now every time I see a cat, I ache. I want another cat, I want Desco back even more, but I do want another cat someday. I just don’t feel that I deserve one.
What are some of your pet regrets?