Last Sunday I received the fright of my life. Having spent the night before partying heartily I was hardly a picture of good health. I soldiered through the day verging between sleep and whining like a girl. By the time it got to late evening I was beginning to feel better. For example I could stand up without feeling a blistering white pain behind my eyes. My flat no longer seemed to be on a boat. I was doing my level best impression of a cucumber(the reason being that I had never seen a cucumber with a hangover) on my couch when I realised that our house rabbit looked like she was having a stroke. She was laying flat on the ground, her legs painfully contorted, breathing heavier than the winner of the Nobel Prize For Perverted Phone Calls. It was hard to tell whether she was shaking or it was her breathing, all in all she looked like she was on the way to check out. We decided that the best we could do was to observe her closely as it wasn’t totally unexpected, after all, she will be 7 in December. After about half an hour we decided to take her to the night vets, and that is when it began
My mind was racing. In my head I was saying goodbye to my evil little fur ball. I was already planning the funeral, deciding upon the vol au vents and the hymns. I knew the day would come, death is inevitable to us all. I felt like my eyes were watery. My heart had sunk. Just the idea of having to call our families and inform them made my voice wobble. As we sat in the car, I peeked into her travel cot and looked at her. The strangest thought struck me. I don’t know whether she was just putting on a brave face(I am not really sure what her brave face looks like.) or she really didn’t give a fuck, either way her courage was a lesson to me.
To some degree it’s possible that I was projecting. I will be thirty-one next month. Since I turned thirty I find myself more and more often thinking about mortality. Not just mine either. The horrifying fact is that death is terrifying. The fact that the human mind was built with the knowledge of it’s own mortality is a horrifying design flaw which in itself takes a massive crap on the intelligent design theory. It’s been around 800,000 years since the human race became masters of fire, yet we still haven’t become masters of our own destiny.
I am scared of dying, therefore I assumed that my rabbit would be to. I have no idea of her position on religion. Rabbits in the afterlife are sadly not mentioned by any of the mainstream religions. I tried to imagine what heaven would look like for a rabbit? It would probably be a place where you are safe, and warm, and the food is good and there are plenty of craps tables. Perhaps I am exaggerating a little. Perhaps she is a buddhist and will be reincarnated as a wombat. It’s impossible to be sure.
What I do know is the rabbit does not display any outward signs of pain, as they fear showing weakness to a predator. I once gave her a nipple cripple and she didn’t even flinch(that last anecdote isn’t true. She would bite my arm off if I tried.). However she did once cut the inside of her mouth up and proceed to sit by her water bowl drinking and cleaning herself. Despite the fact she was hurting she refused to show it, and I admire that. The fact that she is so horribly independent that she is a terrible pet. I admire that. The fact that she lives her life instinctively, that she is a punk rock rabbit, and she lives her life in her way which most people would be afraid to. If something so small can be so fearless why can’t I?
When we arrived at the vets it took approximately 4 minutes before the vet identified the problem. She was constipated. All she needed was a good shit. They gave her some paraffin to get things moving. Now she seems much better. There is a life lesson here, one which we should all take heed of. It might be that life goes on all whilst you still have shit to do, it may be that death doesn’t take any shit or it could even be that you should live your life without giving a shit. Whichever it is, never forget it, in case it comes in useful one day.