As the title says, why does doing the right thing hurt so much? I'm young, 20 years of age, and I certainly am not knowledable about the world. There are many things that I still need to learn, and expereriences and obsticles I still need to face. However, I'm not completely ignorant. I know that life is full of ups and downs. That at some points in our lives we have to sacrifice something to do what is "right." I know that life isn't fair, which I've known since I was young for reasons I rather not touch upon. But, I ask you all now, why is it that sometimes when we do the right thing, we end up feeling more hurt than joy?
The reason I ask this is in regard to two events that have happened in my life. Both of these involve my pets, which were both cats. Now, quickly, I'll tell you guys a quick backstory. When I was five, my mom brought home two feral kittens that were from the same litter. One was a male orange and white tabby, who we named Tigger. The other, his sister, was a pure black and we named her Precious. I loved both of them very much, but Precious was more my baby, just as Tigger was more my mom's. We had both of these cats for over a decade. Tigger lived to be 12 years old, and was the first to die. When he died, Precious took it really hard. She ended up mimicking his meow, and would cry throughout the night, probably mourning Tigger's death. It was hearbreaking, and she was never really the same. I guess one could say that she entered a state of "depression." She was already a timid and skidish cat, but after Tigger's death, it was almost as if she didn't want to interact with anyone or anything. I think my family and I tried to pass it more off that she was just getting old.
So, fast forward to last December. Precious is now fifteen, and showing her age. She is limping when she walks, not moving much, and has lost a lot of weight. Well, the weight loss as actually from an incident of when she got out of the house, and was gone for two weeks. When we finally got her back, she had lost a lot of weight and never gained it back. Well, many red flags went up when she started peeing on the couch, which was very unusual for her. The only other time this has happened was when we were watching my uncle's cat years ago, and she was so terrified of another cat in her territory that she wouldn't go to the litter box. However, this was not the cause. The only other animal we had living in the house was our dachshund, Copper, whom she had no problems with. In fact, when we got him as a puppy, Precious terrorized the heck out of him. That was the first time my family and I had ever seen her so active and playful with another animal. Copper is now four years old. So, knowing that was not the cause, we took her to an animal hospital.
My friend had taken me that day, in case we got bad news and I was too upset to drive. When my friend and I arrived at the animal hospital, I had convince myself that Precious' problem was treatable. However, the vet told me devastating news. Precious had kidney failure. Treatment for such would have been very expensive, and not really helpful, since she did not have much longer to live anyways. The vet told me the one option that I really did not want to do, and I knew that we were going to have to do; we were going to have to put her to sleep. I knew this was the "right" choice because if she lived, she would just end up suffering until she died naturally. I could not stand the see her suffer, not much more than was she already had. So, I called my mom, and told her my decision, in tears of course. They took her away, since I did not have the heart to go in there and watch her die. Though it probably would have gave her more comfort, it was already taking everything I had to keep myself standing as they took her away. While they were carring out the procedure, my brother called, yelling at me to go in there and get her out. But it was too late, and all I could do was answer him in sobs. My friend had been looking around the room, shedding silent tears.
When everything was done, they gave me Precious in a nice box, one that almost looked like a small coffin, and a round clay tablet with her name and pawprint on it. From that day on, there was a hole in my heart. Yet, I tried to tell myself over and over that I made the "right" decision. That I did the "right thing." However, it caused me so much pain that I cried for three days while holding that clay tablet in my hands.
Now, I promise this will not end sadly. Though the ending will be bittersweet. This next story is acutally very recent, that starts about a month ago in the middle of June. One night, I heard a strange sound over the TV. I muted my TV, so I could listen. I didn't know what it was, only that it was coming outside. I went to the front door, opened, and saw a small black and white kitten at the bottom of the steps. The kitten was all alone, crying, and there was no sign of the litter from which it came from or the mother. I opened the door, so I could try to catch it, but it ran off into the bushes. It was dark, so there was not chance of me finding the kitten. The next night, it was back. However, this time it was before it got dark, so I was able to see where it went. I followed it into the bushes, where I trapped it deep into the branches. The kitten hissed and swatted at me. I decided to go back inside and bring some food out. I threw food at it in order to distract it. While it ate, I was able to catch it. I took it inside, and showed it to my family. My mom, at first didn't want to keep it.
After taking a trip to Wal-Mart to buy it some food, I watch over the little kitten all night. I had no idea how old it was, just that it was small. After the first night the kitten was with me, there was an instant connection. The hole in my heart that was created by Precious' death was slowly filling back up. I took the kitten to the vet the next day, and found out it's age and that it was female. I ended up naming the kitten Angel, because I believed she was sent to me from God to ease to fill the hole that was in my heart. I also thought that maybe she was Precious and Tigger reincarnated, since she had a personality similar to both, and she was black and white (Precious' black + Tigger's white).
However, this bliss was not going to last. I had Angel for a month, and over that month, I realized that there was no way we would be able to keep her. Financially, we were not doing well. If she ever got sick or hurt, we could never be able to afford the vet bills. So, again, I was making the "right," yet hard decision of giving her away. I found somebody who would foster her, and then eventually find her a new home. I cried the night before I gave her away, the day of, and the day after. It was painful for me because I had grown so attached to her. Yet, it was the "right" decision. My family could not afford to take care of her. There was a couple of other reasons, but money was the biggest one. I try telling myself that I gave her a new start at life. I saved her, since she would have definitely would died outside, and gave her a new start. Now, she had a chance to be with a family that can probably take care of her.
Even now, as I'm writing this, I still feel the pain of losing both of them. I know for both, I made the right choice, but I've only felt pain from making these decisions. So again, I ask, why does doing the right thing hurt so much?