Dear Humans…

SAM_0069

Dear Humans…

Hello WordPress peeps. Thank you for welcoming me into my Mommy’s life. 🙂 She has told me all about many of you, and she also told me I have many fans requesting photos of me as I continue to grow, and that I need to own up to my modeling contract. I don’t know what that means because I am still a baby and I just want to eat, play, sleep, bite people’s toes, and play some more.

I was surrendered to an animal shelter in the late summer months when I was born. I do not know why. Mommy says it makes her angry, but that she is glad “the idiots” at least had the foresight to bring me someplace safe where I could get proper medical care and the chance of a good home. Mommy has no patience for morons. I’ve heard her tell people off on the phone. I like to be underfoot when she’s on the phone, you just never know what you’ll hear! Mommy has one voice for me, all soft and sweet, and another voice for everyone else. Unless you’re a kitten or a baby, I recommend playing dumb, but you should also know that Mommy will see right through that.

I was put into foster care with my siblings almost as soon as I opened my eyes, which means I was taken away from my biological Mommy way too soon. Kittens need to be weaned, not thrown into shelters!

I shared a foster home with three “big cats”, a huge pitbull, and there were always lots of kittens younger, my age, or older to play with. I did very well with everyone, as I am very well socialized. I was there the longest of all my foster mother’s foster kittens because she loved me best. 🙂 She also wanted to make sure I got the very best home possible. She was strongly considering keeping me, I think, until she got a phone call inquiring about my availability.

One day “new Mommy” called “foster Mommy”, and in less than a few days, I had a new home. Imagine a tiny kittens’ shock and surprise!

On the day in question, “new Mommy” walked into the house. I was walking on the kitchen counter at the time and immediately greeted her. I like to be perched in places above ground, so that I can look down upon my subjects. She lowered herself slightly to my level so I could smell her. I thought “What kind of cat is THIS? Where is her tail?! Oooh, she has pretty hair. I bet she’ll let me bite it.” She spoke to me and gave me a little head scratch. Her nails are nice and sharp, and took away my kitty cat itches, so I let foster Mommy know that it was ok if I went home with her. I liked her coat and her purse, and even though she told me I couldn’t play with expensive things, she was kind and gentle, and I felt safe.

After a short period of time where the humans conversed and laughed, foster Mommy gave me kisses and told me I was going to have a great life. I was put into a kitty carrier that my new Mommy had thought to put warm blankets in, and away we went.

About an hour and forty-five minutes later (I had to ask Mommy about the timing. It was dark and the GPS got us lost. I know this because the heat was on and Mommy kept saying “Why is such an expensive part of this county SO FUCKING DARK AT NIGHT?! Can’t they afford lights?!”), I was brought into my new home.

Mommy showed me where everything was, from my litter box to my fancy food and water bowls, and my new “cat space”. I ate, I drank, and then Mommy put me into “my bed”. It’s a lot bigger than me, but I quickly learned I am meant to share this bed with Mommy. Who made this decision? Exactly who said this little kitten wants to share? I did not agree to this arrangement, so I bites toes for entertainment value. I can get away with this because I am “just a baby”. I heard Mommy say so.

After a few hours, I decided to settle in for a nap and where better to nap than my new Mommy’s lap while she tap-tap-taps on her computer? Occasionally, even now, I reach up and smack her hands to remind her that I’m here, and that the computer isn’t so exciting or interesting. And that my little ears need to be scratched. She will stop singing, writing, and doing whatever it is she’s doing that makes her laugh, and tell me how great I am, what a good kitty, such a sweet little soul, such a good little friend. She tells me that as I get older, we will be besties, whatever that means. For now, she is my warm cuddle buddy and my best playmate. I secretly believe she is a cat and that I cannot find her tail. I know, because I’ve looked.

I am happy in my new home, though I have already made it clear that I need little playmates, siblings if you will, or I will continue to attack Mommy’s feet, ankles, knees, socks, and anything else I can get my little baby paws on. Mommy is not amused when I climb on top of the vacuum cleaner and just sit there. She actually suggested I do some house work. I smacked my new Uncle’s feet recently, just to keep him in his place. Mommy encouraged me to do this, telling me it would make him feel “loved and important”. Yes, she’s silly, but she’s also very interesting to watch.

What can I tell you about my Mommy that you don’t already know? She loves me, hugs me, cuddles me, gives me kisses, feeds me, plays with me, talks to me, gives me yummy treatsies, tells me what a good girl I am, grooms me, cleans my ears, cleans my face, wipes my eyes so I don’t develop “tear stains”, and tells me NO when I climb things. She tells me “I am responsible for you. I have to make sure you’re safe and healthy.” She cuts my nails when I am asleep, so I don’t get agitated. Isn’t that sweet? Sometimes, but not always, she will spritz me with water to get the NO to stick, especially if I’ve been doing something I already know I shouldn’t be doing, like attacking Mommy’s books. I heard her talking about this the other day and she said it was a “cat behavior” trick.

Mommy has no idea how well trained she is. All I have to do is glance in her general direction and she’ll go and check my food and water bowls. If I want wet food, all I have to do is bump her legs when she’s in the kitchen and she will ask if I am hungry. She tells me I have to meow, but if I chirp at her or squeak, she accepts that. If I want my toys, I sit on the stairs and stare at her and give her “disapproving cat face”, and she immediately knows that I want my feather ball, or one of my other new toys. I bring them back to her and she’ll throw them back and forth for me while I run up and down the stairs. Secretly, I think Mommy really likes this game.

My favorite game, other than my feather ball, is the feather wand. Mommy will try to exhaust me with it, but often has to say “No more today baby girl, Mommy is too sick to play with you right now.” I don’t know what that means, so some days I cuddle into Mommy to let her know I am listening. I cuddle in and I purr, and I am rewarded with love, kisses, chin scratches, belly rubs, and praise.

A little over a month ago I was a kitten without a forever home. Today I am a four month old “little monkey” with a loving Mommy that is very attentive, with menfolk that show me affection (especially Uncle), a warm place to be, always, and full reign of the house. All I want for the new year is friends to play with. I do like being the sole kitty of the house, but I also miss Mommy when she goes away and she says it’s not nice to knock everything off her dresser. Apparently she is very attached to that perfume she wears and doesn’t like seeing “My expensive bottles on the floor, Verity!!” Sometimes I nap, sometimes I climb. Ok, so I climb more than I nap. I’m just a little baby.

Please encourage Mommy to find me two friends. They have to be my size or smaller, they have to like to play a lot, they have to like laying in Mommy’s lap with me watching movies or TV (Just because I am named after a Bond Girl that was only in one scene, that doesn’t mean I want to watch Skyfall. I don’t care how attractive Mommy finds Daniel Craig. What happened to her “No watching married men.” rule?” Of course, I realize this means she’d never be able to watch TV or movies ever again, but I am willing to overlook this if she gets me friends.), and they have to do silly things so that Mommy will laugh her musical laugh, and play with us, instead of saying “Does EVERY MORNING have to start with blood shed?” Even though Mommy clipped my nails, I really think someone ought to clip hers. I am pretty sure her fangs are bigger than mine too.

These are my tiny kitten observations. I hope you’ve enjoyed my story. And please, for the love of all that is holy, DON’T SHOP, ADOPT.

SAM_0070

Yes, I am REALLY this cute.

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Facing The Pain

Tomorrow I am going to lose my cat. Realization has sunk in, and I’ve been crying for days.

Last week was a bad one for her. She was throwing up, she had physically distanced herself from me. She sought no comfort, she ignored me, and many times she looked at me with no recognition as to who I was or why I was touching her. It’s like she’d developed Alzheimer’s, and it made me sick to the point of headaches and tears.

This week was worse. She fell down the stairs Monday evening and sometime between yesterday and today, she seems to have had a stroke. I don’t know if she’ll make it through the night, and I can honestly say I don’t know what in the world I am going to do without her.

This little cat has been with me through some of the darkest days of my life, she has seen me through things I never thought I’d get through. She is one of the only living beings that has known me longer than anyone else that has come into my life since. Losing her will kill an immense chunk of who I am, and yet I know that after she is buried and the crying stops (if it ever does), I will adopt again. Because I may not be “a crazy cat lady”, but I do thrive on the love and attention both given and received from these magical creatures. I raised her, and she knows me better than people who were in my life long before she came along. What does that say about people when animals see more substance than they do?!

I remember the first day I met my soon-to-be kittens. They were to be a birthday gift. Surrounded by so many animals in cages, all needing a forever home, I went straight for the kittens. I had talked about nothing, but kittens at that point for three years. Initially, a few showed interest in me, but it was mild. One kitten went right for me with his claws, as if I might harm him in some way and he needed to defend himself. That or no one had bothered to clip his nails, who knows? My best friend at the time was with me and said “Look how sweet these two are.”, and he proceeded to show me my babies.

The first was the larger of the two kittens. Grey, white, cream, and smoke colored with big golden eyes, huge ears, and paws. She was part Egyptian Mau. I said hello and gave her my hand. She sniffed at me and gave me her paw, no claws, just her paw in my hand, gentleness, and her sweet little face. I was in love. Resting behind her was her litter-mate, a tiny Tortoiseshell who would become my complete and total mini-me. She had the darkest of the Tortie colors all over, a smattering of color here and there, what some people would probably refer to as “Dilute”, but she had this amazing tail with a great big orange stripe running through the middle and bits of cinnamon shading. She had pretty grey eyes. She was unimpressed, and scared. Her sister was bigger and was the protector. She wouldn’t let anyone touch “the baby”, as we were calling her in that moment.

I had to have them, those were my exact words.

A couple had been following me from cage to cage in a very eerie way. I heard them say, in another language, “Is she taking them? If not, we only want the pretty one.” The cage was marked DOUBLE ADOPTION, everyone who had inquired about “the pretty one” was informed that you had to take them both, you couldn’t just have one. Many had walked away. I called someone over to me and said “Can I see these two please?” The couple then asks “Are you taking them?” to which everyone with me immediately responds “YES!”

Two little kittens are brought to me inside the meeting room. The sweet one immediately turns into hell on four paws. She doesn’t want to be held, she doesn’t want to be kissed, no, she doesn’t want to play, she wants to RUN. She allows me to hold her for a few seconds, and then proceeds to jump off of me around the room. I sported so many scratches from this cat throughout her life that I’m lucky my hands and feet bear not a single scar (I do have a few scars from longer, deeper scratches when I was holding her and someone scared her. It’s possible I am the only one that can still see them, but they’re definitely a part of me, a part of my life with cats.). God Bless the inventors of Neosporin.

Her tiny companion is very quiet, shy, reserved, very scared. My Mom picks her up so she can look in her eyes and says “Ok little girl, what’s wrong with you?” All of a sudden this little spitfire of a kitten looks right down at her, sticks both of her front paws into my mother’s mouth, and gives her the perfect expression that says “I don’t know lady, what’s wrong with you?!” That spark of fiery personality let us know that she was shy & healthy, and we would soon learn she had the biggest mind of her own.

I’d made my choice, and the second they were moved into a “holding cage” (#26, the same day as my birthday) I KNEW there was no way they weren’t going home with me. I knew they were mine. It took several hours for the adoption to be approved (North Shore Animal League is no joke, they call ALL of your references to make sure they’re not handing an animal over to someone that shouldn’t have a pet. I was lucky they didn’t ask for a DNA sample.), but once the approval came through, I was given two kittens in a traveling box, a huge supply of the Iams diet they’d been eating since arriving at NSAL, and I was also given the opportunity to bring them back to have them spayed free of charge as part of the adoption fee (They were both spayed several months later at my local vet.).

Their first night home was a bit much. After several hours in the car, they were ready to be let free to run, to play, & go to the bathroom. I decided to keep them confined to one room in my apartment since they were so small and gradually let them into the other rooms as they got a little older. Being kittens, they jumped over the gate I put up countless times in their efforts to explore. They didn’t like to be confined in any way, they both thrived on freedom. Once they were no longer tiny and in danger of serious trouble, they had free reign of their home.

I’d spend countless hours throwing bouncy rubber balls against my closet door which they would then chase all over the room since the hard wood floors allowed them to really get into this game. As they got older they took to bringing the balls to me whenever they wanted to play. I’d wake up sometimes and there would be three balls in bed with me. Once they tired out, they’d settle into their cat beds or my bed and sleep for what seemed like very short periods of time back in those days. They weren’t big meal eaters, they both grazed, so I always left food and fresh water out for them.

After a few months I tossed their cat beds (The oldest had decided they were better litter boxes than cat beds! I’m not sure why she disliked it so much, but I think it was the simple fact that as she got older, she got more territorial Gone were the days of two kittens sleeping together and showing each other so much affection.) and they slept with me. One at my head, one at the foot of the bed. These positions didn’t change much from kitten-hood into adult hood, but they did switch places at times for territorial reasons.

They were both extremely unique in personality. The oldest kitten had to meet everyone and be social and loving, but my mini-me decided that she only loved me. By “loved me”, I mean she was downright obsessed with my comings and goings, followed me everywhere, and had to be with me no matter what. I’m pretty sure that when she decided I was going to be her person when she was about 5 months old that she had someone install some kind of kitty Lojack on me when I was sleeping and unaware. This should be helpful for future cats that may find they need a tracking device on their new Mommy.

In May of 2008 I lost my part Mau little girl when she threw a clot and died in my arms. My mother died two weeks later. It was an awful year, truly. Now here I am in the beginning of another year, a year that was supposed to be better, and I am losing another baby.

Tomorrow I will put my beloved little girl to sleep. I didn’t want to have to make this choice, but I cannot allow her to suffer for a single moment longer than necessary. This week has torn me apart.

I was asked this morning if I wanted one of the other vets to handle this (Believe it or not, I’ve never met any of the other three vets that work there.), and I said no, that I cannot do this without my vet. That might seem silly, it might even seem selfish, but this woman has cared for my macaroon since I moved here in 2009. She has been kind, attentive, loving, compassionate, caring, real, and it was her diagnosis that saved my cat in May of 2009. That diagnosis and the subsequent treatment have kept her alive ever since. Many times she would say to her “You love your Mommy very much, I can see that.”, and she’d always hold her and kiss her like she was one of her own. How can you not love a vet that good? Believe me, they are rare.

I once got into a massive fight with a vet. He was a moron, and my reaction was to put him in his place. I’m a little over 5.3 ½”, and this guy was a good 6.8″ or so. The more I talked, the further he backed away from me, until he was hitting the rear door. I can see he wants to argue with me, but he wasn’t going to win, not that day. The way he kept moving away from me was hilarious. It got to the point where my brother said “If you’re going to hit him, I’ll be outside.” I apologized to this guy’s boss the following day and he said “Don’t apologize, how else is he going to learn?!” Finding a good vet is definitely a priceless thing.

Last night I was reminded that I have given this cat a life so full of love. My brother said to me “I have never seen anyone be a better cat mother than you. You are nurturing, committed, devoted, she has never gone without love and the things she needs. You’ve gone above and beyond, she adores you, that little cat just plain worships you. Don’t ever think you haven’t done enough.”

Sometimes we need to hear things like this from the casual observer, especially when we don’t think that person is really paying attention to anything.

In closing, I know I will get through this. I will cry, I will hurt, I will mourn, and I will rise up out of the ashes once again like the phoenix that I am.

My little girl will be in the backyard in a spot the sun always gets. She has always loved laying in the sun and whenever she did, our eyes would be the exact same shade of green.

Keep me in your prayers tomorrow. I will need it.

UPDATE: My little girl passed away tonight as I slept by her side. At about 7:40 PM or so I told her to stop holding on for me, because she was suffering. I told her to follow the light, that my Mom and her sister would be waiting for her. I fell asleep holding her paw, and sometime between then and waking up at 11:00-11:30 PM to check on her, she had passed away. I’m devastated, but I will eventually be ok.