While I have mentioned my wonderful kitty, Carmen, on several occasions, I haven’t yet talked about the first cat that I had as an adult. The main reason I have put off writing about her is because her death was so hard on me. I was with her when the vet permanently eased her suffering. (Thank you, Barbara, for going with me.) I figured it was the least I could do so her last minutes weren’t spent surrounded by strangers. I still cry when I think about it.
But there was so much more to Kiki than her final moments. I think it is finally time to share her memory with the world.
Kiki was a challenging cat to love. She never fully recovered from the mistreatment she received before I got her. For the first six months I had her, she lived under the bed. She only came out for attention when it was dark and I was in bed. But, the older she got, the more loving.
The major turning point in her affection factor was when she went with me to England. That meant spending six months of quarantine. The quarantine law there requires that cats remain in their cages 100% of the time, so they were essentially like dog runs: 3 feet across and about five feet long.
It took me an hour of public transportation to get to her – including a train and a bus. I made the trip once a week. I was locked in the cage with her for our visit. Fortunately it had a cement ledge at the back where her bed was. I sat there, pulling her onto my lap, and telling her about all the things that had been going on in my life … so she wouldn’t be confused when she was finally sprung from kitty jail.
The ladies that worked there knew my schedule, so they gave her an extra special brushing the day before I came and let her know that I would shortly be there to love on her.
My landlord was wonderful and let me keep living there with her, even with her elephant-like wind sprints in the middle of the night, running up and down the stairs.
I was so surprised when I sprung her that I had a lap cat. She wanted to be on me, just as she had been during her jail time. I joked with friends that if I had known that would be the result, I would have put her in quarantine years earlier!
She was with me during some really rough patches in my life. I’m glad I had that companionship, especially with the older version of her!
Has anyone else ever had a pet that helped them through challenging times? or Why do cats suddenly need to be in the other room?