________ is coming over. I am cleaning a large closet that one encounters when entering the house through the front door. This closet happens to be the place where I chose to put my cat Ozora's two litter pans (recently downgraded from three). This is why I am cleaning the closet. Some may think that cleaning two litter boxes and ridding the house of the odor that permeates would not be a difficult task. I would agree. I would agree if that were what I was doing. But I am not simply dragging the pooper scooper through the gravely wasteland to pick up turds and clumps of pee. I am attempting to conquer a magnificent feat. One that requires the dew of spray bottles spritzing chemicals on nearly every surface that I tread upon. As you know, what is tread upon is lived upon. And I am living in cat urine and fecal matter.
Ozora pees and poops in almost every corner of my house. It is irritating and disgusting. I am appalled at myself for living this long with pee pads strategically placed throughout my dining and living rooms. It is awful. I am embarrassed to have people come to my house because I am certain that as they cross the threshold, hints of cat piss will creep up to their nostrils. I do not want my house to be the house that reeks so badly that visitors talk about "the smell." But Ozora is old. She is nearly 20 now. I have known her all of her life. She was my pet throughout middle school and high school. She was there to cuddle with when I came home from college. When I moved to live on my own, she and her sister Fluff Fluff came with me. And so I ask you this: What am I to do with a beloved pet who is a part of my family, but who defecates around my house?
Ozora may be in discomfort. I don't know. I should take her to the veterinarian, but I am terrified that he will tell me that she is sick and should be put down.
My mother, who parented Ozora and Fluff Fluff when I was young, is visiting. She definitely has opinions about Ozora. They change frequently and with her mood. Her statement that I should, "go ahead and kill her," tells me how she feels about the euthanasia of Ozora.
I am even having difficulty finding an appropriate term for what I need to do. I am killing her if I ask the doctor to give her a drug that stops her heart. It is such an ugly word. K-I-L-L. I don't like it being attached to the subject "I". I guess "put down" is the euphemism that is currently used. Even that phrase seems derogatory to me.
Recently Ozora has been reposing in one corner of the living room. She has never released herself in this corner. A grandmother clock that belonged to my grandmother furnishes the corner. Ozora lays next to the clock so much that her fur collects on the carpet. I collect gray tufts of it as I pass by the spot. I cannot help but think that Ozora is some kind of connection to my grandma. When my grandma was alive and living in my house, Ozora would visit her daily. So many times I walked passed her room and saw Ozora, cozy as a kitten, lying on the bed next to Grandma. They would both be relishing the warmth provided by the cream blanket or the space heater, I don't know which.
Grandma will be gone for one year in September. It could be mere coincidence that Ozora cat naps next to my grandmother's grandmother clock. But I'm superstitious enough to take a step back and think.