Taking care of animals is always equal levels of pleasure and sadness. You have the joy of first getting your pet. You spend years of happiness and enjoy an immense amount of jubilant memories together. Then that day comes when they need your help and it’s time your beloved pet crosses the rainbow bridge.
The emotions are there for taking care of animals outside as well. You root for them in different ways. They don’t have the same advantages and good life your pets share, but you can still provide a level of comfort for them that they can still maintain a certain quality of life that is a great life according to them because that’s the only life they have ever known.
Over the years, my family and I have raised dozens of cats both indoors as pets and outdoors as part of feral families. It is one of the most rewarding, yet heart wrenching things one can ever do. Today was no different. Among the chaos of the day, we were informed that there was a kitten in our backyard that was not moving much and looked to be in pain. Upon further investigation, my mother had assessed that the kitten appeared to have a broken leg. We called our local vet and took the kitten in immediately. The cries from this small creature pierced through our souls and we knew the poor animal was suffering. X-rays were taken to confirm what we already knew. The little guy was doomed. He has crossed over to the rainbow bridge way too soon. He was a beautiful animal. So young, but three weeks old. Never got to know the joys of being an innocent, playful kitten. Its life, though short, was filled with pain and suffering. It is a comfort knowing he is out of pain.
I am notorious in my family for giving eccentric names to our pets. I cannot help it. I look at the animals and I just know their names already. I looked at his little face and I named him Magenta. At first, it appeared to be an ode to Blue’s Clues or the wickedly evil character from Rocky Horror Picture Show. Then I realized what the significance of the name meant to me. There’s a certain feeling we feel that sits in the pit of our stomachs. We don’t really know what to call it. Blanche Devereaux from Golden Girls stated it perfectly.
She said, “Magenta. That’s what I call it when I get that way – all kinds of feelings tumbling all over themselves. Well, you know you are not quite blue, because you’re not really sad. And although you are a little bit jealous, you wouldn’t say you are green with envy. Every now and then you realize you are kinda scared, but you’d hardly call yourself yellow. I hate that feeling. I just hate it. And I hate the color magenta. That’s why I named it that.”
So here’s to you, our little Magenta. To an indescribable sadness for a life cut much too short. May you rest in peace.