The Glue That Put Family Back Together
by Lea Custer
BluePearl Veterinary Partners
June 1, 2012 – My husband and I were both busy with high pressure jobs struggling to raise two teenage sons.
During a heart-breaking period of problems, our son had a near-death accident on his motorcycle. During his long and painful recovery at home, our adventure-seeking son was bored and lacking in purpose.
One day, he told us about a neurologically challenged kitten that was about to be euthanized at our local animal hospital. He wanted to adopt the kitten and was certain with proper love and attention, the kitten could survive. He seemed invigorated by the irony of one very broken creature taking care of another.
We brought the kitten home and our son named him, “Amos, He Who Sees The Invisible,” because he seemed to paw at things in the air that weren’t really there. His eyes were crossed, he couldn’t walk very well and he couldn’t sit very well, which caused a posture we called “the kitty lean”. He walked sideways and couldn’t go up and down the stairs. How could we not fall madly in love with this adorable little black-and-white bundle?
For the next few months, the biggest argument in our family was over who would get to hold Amos and rock him to sleep. We enjoyed a period of tranquility the likes of which we hadn’t seen in years! Our family was bonded by our love for one helpless little kitten who made us laugh and enjoy spending time together again.
I wish I could say that we all lived happily ever after, but sadly, Amos began to have seizures. When we knew it was time to let him go, my son asked if I would take him and Amos to the veterinary clinic. The doctor was kind and reminded us that Amos wouldn’t have had any life at all if it hadn’t been for us. He comforted us by telling us we were doing the right thing, but we still cried for days together.
As sad as it was, the real beauty of this experience is that Amos was the “glue” that put our family back together again. We learned that our son has a kind and gentle soul.
I believe we all learned things about each other that surprised us during our months with Amos, and those lessons have helped us to remember that families are imperfect, but in the end it is family that matters.
Oh, and our son, the one who nearly died? He graduated from Georgia Tech with honors and a degree in aerospace engineering. See? Our story really does have a happy ending.