(Warning if you aren’t an animal person this post may cause you to get your eyeballs stuck in the back of your head due to excessive eye rolling…don’t say you weren’t warned.)
I haven’t talked about Reba lately. That’s on purpose. Anyone who’s hung out with me here knows that Reba is the stray-feral cat that adopted us last November. I wrote about Reba lots…check out some of the past posts here.
Reba, if you remember, had kittens in May. Two of them. (Here are a few pictures) One of my sweet readers warned me not to name them, knowing I’d have to give them up(The Husband has asthma and is allergic to cats) and getting attached would make it so much harder. Boy was she right. Magnolia and Savannah were names I gave them. And I fell in love with them. The vet told me I had to bring Reba into the garage along with the kittens to keep everyone safe until they were ten weeks old. We did. Reba especially did not appreciate this. She’s a wild cat and never been “contained”. I spent hours downstairs with the three of them making sure the kittens were socialized and Reba was adjusting. Always it was bitter-sweet knowing the time was coming when they’d have to go.
After weeks of watching the kittens grow it was time. The Husband took the kittens to the shelter two Saturday’s ago. You’d think I was giving up my own children. Reba and I had a terrible weekend.
Then, per the vet, we waited a week before taking Reba to be spayed. For eight days I went down and sat with Reba three or four times a day. She was in such distress without her kittens. Her nipples were hard and I knew she had mastitis. I fed her tuna and all manner of smelly treats. I played with her. I sat in the floor while she lay right next to me, touching my leg, but never in my lap. I let her take my hands in her paws and knead them, she tries to be gentle but I have scratches all over my hands from those little shows of affection. But I don’t care. To be honest that week (last week) was a particularly hard week for me anyway, so Reba and I sat in the floor and cried a lot. Her, for her kittens and me for … well for whatever reasons.
This morning was the morning I had to catch Reba in a carrier and take her to be spayed. I went downstairs earlier than usual. She met me at the door excited and talking up a storm. I’ve had a big carrier in the garage with her for days. The door to the carrier is open and I’ve been putting bits of tuna inside. She goes right in and nibbles with no concern of being locked up. This morning I went and pretended to put something in the dish inside the carrier. She purred as if to thank me and marched right in. Like usual. Except this time I closed the door and locked her in.
I can not adequately describe for you the look that little thing gave me. It was a mix of hurt, shock, terror, betrayal.
It broke my heart. I started to sob, telling her I was sorry. “I had to do it. It’s for your own good. It’ll be much better soon.”
She didn’t even make a sound. She just looked at me, right in the eyes.
All the way to the vet I cried. I cried for Reba and for the fact that I couldn’t explain to her what was happening. I cried because I’d worked so hard to get this wild cat to trust me and now maybe I’d ruined that trust… And I cried because it was a God moment. I knew God was showing me something about how He feels when I’m confused and hurt or terrified or betrayed by something He’s allowed in my life. Like now.
So this is the God- lesson Reba taught me today. I’m still crying. She’s downstairs still locked in the carrier very drowsy on pain meds. I’ve been with her lots since I picked her up and I’m going back now. She’s helpless and confused. She needs me. I know how she feels.
Love and prayers for each one of you today.