If Only

by Ynez Luna, Gr. 7 - St. Pedro Calungsod
Dimitri the cat. Photo by Ynez Luna, Gr. 7A

People say that the number 13 is an unlucky number. I never believed them.

It was April 13, 2014, Sunday, around 10 a.m. I was at home and on my Mac while my close friend Lovelee, who was sleeping over for two nights, played on her Acer laptop.

I never really believed in superstitions and I still don’t, but now, I loathe the number 13.

We were playing computer games until Miriam, one of our house helpers, called us. She said that my favorite cat, Dimitri, looked… ugly. My cat was a Persian, so how could he be ugly? On our way downstairs, Lovelee and I laughed because we thought that it was a joke. That is, until we found out what Miriam meant.

We gasped in shock as I saw my furry brown angel under the table with blood dripping out of his mouth. I teared up as Lovelee ran back upstairs to call for a vet. Problem? It was Sunday–no vet clinic nearby was open. I called my parents, who were out of town that time, and my only sister who was on a road trip with friends.

I cried at my cat’s poor state. It was horrible. His left eye was bulging out of its socket and there was blood on the floor, in his mouth and on his beautiful brown and white fur. My mother told me she had a friend who was a vet and she made me call him. Luckily, he replied and told us to meet him at his clinic near Laguna Bel Air 1 and 2.

Afterwards, he examined Dimitri.

I got terrible news.

The doctor said that a car most likely hit him and it was a “hit and run”.

He said that Dimitri’s jaw was broken and that he wouldn’t survive. I issued him permission to put my cat into a deep sleep.

An endless sleep.

I didn’t go to the burial. I didn’t want to. For days, I just stayed home sobbing, watching television and wallowing in my own self-pity and… guilt. If only I didn’t have a friend over. If only I knew what would happen and I would’ve spent more time with him. If only I made sure that he didn’t go outside. If only I was there.

I just want to go back and forget it.

However, we can’t live our lives with ‘what ifs’. We can’t go back. I guess I couldn’t change the fact that I wasn’t there for him. That day, a part of my heart was torn out. That day, I lost all my luck. That day, I felt like I lost everything.

If only, huh?

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