The journey yesterday was horrible for the girls, which made it all the more difficult. We rigged up a secure space in the back of the car so they didn't have to be stuck in their cat baskets - they could move round, have water and dried food, and their litter tray. The M25 was chocker and the heat unbearable, and they wouldn't eat or drink. The longest journey they've ever had proved to us that those odd thoughts we'd had of getting them micro-chipped and their own passports and taking them with us just weren't feesible.
Saying goodbye to the cats forever wasn't something we'd planned but in the end we had no choice. There were tears on the way back, but it didn't really hit us until we got home. I'd forgotten what grief could feel like, and what it felt like to really cry.
Daft as it may sound, I feel pleased with myself for the doing the grown-up thing and do what was best for them. The journey may have been unkind, but they have gone to a good, safe home, and it won't be too long before they have recovered and are settled. The lady they are with now is really nice, and is so happy to have them. My gut feeling was good, which helped loads. Even though staying with my dad would have meant we would see them occassionally, I'm glad they're not with him now... he wouldn't have been very attentive to them or their needs, and they wouldn't have been as happy. They're with someone who wants them as much as we do.
We are friends on Facebook now, the lady and myself, which a great way to see how the cats are doing from a distance. It's really tempting to keep asking how they are, what have they been up to, have they eaten much, has Minky being talking etc etc... now though, I need to do the next grown-up thing and let go. They need to get on with their new lives, and us with ours. It's best for a while, methinks, to keep my distance and let them get on with it. In time it will be easier and I'll be able to see new photos and read tales of their antics without the overbearing sense of guilt, mothering and loss that I'm feeling right now.
Aran is doing his best to cheer us up, although even he keeps looking to see where they are. Bless him, he doesn't understand why mummy and daddy are upset.
Hope the stupid passport office sort Aran's application out quickly, as I can't bear to stay here any longer now. The flat feels horribly empty and unhomely. We have to go now, because there's nothing really left to stay for, y'know?
Between us we've taken in rescue cats, have rescued other cats and found them good homes, we've paid out small fortunes in vets bills to help previous cats, but we've never given our cats away, and we never want to do this again.