It is indeed a heartbreaking emotion to hear what you’ve been hoping not to hear. When you’re wishing that something won’t happen and yet still happens and you are unable to stop it as it comes towards you like a freight train.
The incidents that occurred are very silly, in one aspect; however, they made my heart just wilt.
Introduction to the History
There was a cat born in the very same college hostel I am now residing in. The owner, had raised him with lavish care and attention. One day, she had to leave the college because she got a job. She promised her neighbours that she would return to take the cat back to her home. She left the cat with tears in her eyes.
The cat roamed the hallways, searching for his owner. He cried and cried and cried, hoping that she was somewhere. Early in the morning, hearing his cries, numerous heads would pop out the doors and seeing his sad face, everyone used to empathise.
One girl couldn’t handle the lonely cry. She tried giving him some food. He ran away.
Again, the next day morning, he came searching, crying in that plaintive tone, and she again tried giving milk. He didn’t even look at her.
The third day, she was waiting for him. He didn’t bother coming that side at all.
A few days later, the neighbour of the previous owner and the hostel warden were talking about taking care of the cat and how they cannot do so, a girl passes by them and hearing this conversation, she goes running to the girl who had been putting out milk for the cat. The moment she gets this news, she goes to them and tells them that she’ll take care of it.
They look at her suspiciously, doubting whether she really knew what she was taking on. She said, “I will take care of him.”
They exchanged dubious glances and agreed half-heartedly, probably thinking that she would change her mind the next day.
The girl, next day, went to them and asked about the cat. They were surprised. They hadn’t expected this.
They find out she is serious about raising the cat.
They take her to the room where the previous owner used to stay and finds the cat cuddled in front of the door, waiting for the owner.
Her heart breaks a little.
She tries talking to him, but he runs in fear.
She started going to him every day, till he came to sniff her outstretched hand.
Slowly, she moved his bowl and things to her room and tried bringing him there. He hissed, scratched and ran.
She just shook her head, smiled a little and waited till next day.
The next day was a partial success. The cat came halfway, then scratched and ran.
At this rate, she was going to be covered in scratches.
The third day, she was sitting in her room, mulling options on luring the cat, when suddenly, he walked in oh-so-casually.
She sat there, dumbstruck, as he made his way inside and walked around in a regal strut.
She remained still so as not to frighten him. He greeted her with an arrogant meow and jumped on her bed and proceeded to sleep.
That’s it. He had become hers.
She had thought he was going to be hers for life.
They spent happy times together in that room, sharing secrets, laughing, playing around.
He would cuddle her so affectionately and nuzzle her every now and then.
I don’t know if it was to reassure her of his presence or himself of hers.
When she would fall into her bed tiredly, he would just burrow into her and provide her warmth and comfort.
Many months later, he suddenly stopped coming home after his night hunt.
She got worried – Had he got injured? Where did he go? Why is he not coming?
One evening he started wailing in that horribly sad tone. At first she thought she had been hallucinating, hearing things like she had been the past few days. She would go around the hostel, calling him and girls would look at her strangely. But this was no hallucination.
She bolted out of her room and saw him walking in the corridor. She scooped him up and hugged him close to her heart. He buried his head under her neck and she felt her world settle back into alignment.
At dusk, he left for his usual night hunt. She promised that the next time he brought a dead chameleon for her as a gift, she wouldn’t be mad at him. Because, she had asked God for a cat, and He had given her a cat.
He didn’t return for the next few days.
One day, she was in her room, again restless that he wasn’t with her, when a knock sounded on the door.
An unfamiliar face asked, “Is the cat here?”
She frowned in puzzlement, “No, he isn’t. Why?”
“I just came to see the cat.”
“But how do you know the cat?”
She paused, looking at her weirdly, and replied, “He’s my cat!”
For a second, the world narrowed and she gaped.
She stuttered “oh ok” a couple of times.
They spoke for a couple of minutes. It was very simple. She had come to take back her cat to her home.
And she, stupidly, gave advice on how to carry him safely so that he may be comfortable during the journey.
She left, wistfully glancing inside the room, once again looking for the cat.
She closed the door, let out a deep breath and sat on the bed, a little bit numb.
That evening, he came crying into the hostel. She ran for him again, lifted him up and this time, she held him tight.
She didn’t want to let go. However, he slipped away from her side when she had fallen asleep. And a couple of hours later, the old owner came again to see the cat.
The old owner asked if this girl had fed the cat.
The new owner said yes and that he’ll come only in the morning next.
The old owner said he will go to the old room where she had stayed.
The new owner said he never went that side.
The old owner said that he did because he had been sleeping with her last night.
Her world narrowed once again. She saw the old owner leave with a happy face. This time, she had to close her eyes tightly and count to ten. Then she counted to a hundred.
Then she wondered how many hundreds would it take to make the feeling go away.
This incident made me think, if tomorrow, you are faced with the decision of letting something or someone go, how will you know when to hold on to and when to let go.
Certainly, many times, the best option is to let go. Knowing that there is always another opportunity, a better prospect waiting for you around the corner. However, sometimes you feel that pull in your heart, that you know it might not be the best thing right now but you let go in the hopes that maybe someone will take better care of that precious thing than you ever did and can ever do.
Many animal adoption stories go like this. And I’ve always been the one supporting friends, and helping them stay strong in their decision to give away their pet. And now I’m in their shoes.
And yes, I can pull myself together logically, yes I can. And I will. However, the feeling will take time to abate.
Of course, it would. It’s only human nature to feel that profound sadness.
But yes, soon, he’ll be in a better place and so will I, for I know I can find comfort in the fact that he is loved!
So there’s another piece of advice – to myself and to you…
Stay strong. There’s always a reason. There’s always a silver lining.
I know it’ll help. Because it has helped before. It’s gonna help again!!!
Have a jolly good time people, enjoy life, give a lot of love, one day, you will find that it is these memories that will keep your smile still on your lips.
Good night folks!
PS: He’s the one in my avatar pic!!! 😛