A month ago I shared some photos of my family with you. I want to tell you all a little about my cat, glaring primadonna that she was.
I don't have many good pictures of her, she's pretty sour in all of them.
When she came into this world she was dead. Her mother left her laying there and tended to her brothers and sister but I picked her up and I got her breathing with the breath from my own lungs. We've been inseparable for just under twenty year. I'm only 26, I've had her as my best friend, as my cohort, as the inspiring creature in music and art and writing. Last week she went off her food, since she normally does that when she's going into heat I didn't pay much attention, Last night she came to me and curled up in my lap. She was purring and nuzzling me before she met my eyes and just left us. It was painless, utterly, we found blood on her nose so I'm assuming her heart just gave out.
There's an odd intimacy in watching her take her first breath, and watching her take her last, both in acts of love and connection. I haven't really cried as much as I expected to, I promised her I was going to be fine. I've watched pets die before, but this was different. I know it might sound silly but she was less like a pet to me and more like a sister. We got in trouble together, we egged each other on. She could carry a grudge and enact her revenge in wonderful, creative ways. One day when Wes stomped on her tail by accident she waited until he had laid out his pants for work, smugly trotted over, wormed her way inside them and defecated. That was her, the irate and wonderful queen of our house.
My mom never believed in buying the cats beds, or anything other then the cheapest food from the dollar store near our house, but ever since I moved out I've been spoiling Kit rotten, and her attitude went with it.
The first time she was pregnant she was too young. She lost the litter and it did something to her, she didn't go into heat again for 12 years but that didn't mean she didn't have kittens. When she lost her litter she 'adopted' two grown tomcats. She made them nurse, she made the stay in the kitten basket and would smack them if they tried to get out. She'd wash them vigorously and sit on them for hours.
I loathe taking animals to the vet, not because I don't think they deserve the care but because when they're hurt or sick every cat I've taken to the vet has gone back in that little room and I never see them again. It upset me greatly as a small child. I didn't trust vets, or doctors in general because of it. Two years ago I had to swallow that fear with Kit. I'd noticed that she was doing her 'the floor is lava' impression. I never knew why she'd suddenly decide she couldn't touch the floor but it had been going on for years. I'd have to carry her into the kitchen to her food dish and then she'd cry until I walked her back across the 'fiery' linoleum or else... she'd find her own way across using hanging plants, the good china, and my picnic basket collection as her stepping stones. This 'lava time' was different though, she went to the highest point of the room and just sat there, like the Raven from Poe's work. I thought it was weird and went about my daily business until we got back from shopping and she was still up there. Okay, I fed her up there - weird cat. She was pleasant, purring, and smacked me when I petted her - that meant she was fine right? It took five days to coax her down from the ceiling with tuna, only to have her reveal that she couldn't stand on one foot once she was down. My darling cat had managed to put a nail through her paw and hide it and it was terribly infected. Cue one trip to the vets that had my anxiety for this so high I was shaking. A very expensive vet bill later she was back and fine.
I miss her, very much.