As those of you know who follow this blog, the cat I write about now, my sweet ginger ninja, is not the cat with whom I first shared this page. A boy of decided opinions, and strong personality, I’m sure had he been literate, the page would be called CatandIsobel. Or possibly, Cat.
He converted this dog person into a cat appreciator, kidnapped my heart and proceeded to conquer my friends and family, as well as making me new friends from his own large circle of admirers.
It sounds like a big claim, but he changed my life. He was a tie, a responsibility, a worry. All those things that people say when they tell you why they don’t want pets. Things I had agreed with. But he gave more than he took, even when he didn’t know it. A visit from Cat brightened Mother’s day. He sliced through her dementia to the animal lover she remains. She was proud that I could let him out of the car and he would walk straight up her garden path to greet her.
When she hovered between life and death last March, he slept on her bed, and she beamed to see him there.
Locally, he was voted the Mother and Toddler’s favourite cat, even by those who had cats. He was pushchair friendly, a benign ginger and white presence on daily outings. “We look for him every day,” mothers told me, as he rolled on his back, showing his white tummy, or rubbed his head against the pushchair.
One of the reasons I bought das Boot, was to have somewhere I could take Cat when I visited Mother. True to form, he adapted to his surroundings and gained new friends and admirers.
I told him he had to live to thirty, but he was around seventeen when he died last year.
Memories of him make me smile, though I wonder if the pain of his loss will ever completely pass. Still, I would rather have that sadness than to have missed him in my life. One friend called him a magic cat. Another, in the early days, told me sternly that he was a special cat, that not every cat was as interactive, as much fun. She also tried to persuade me he would be better off with her. I believe she thought she had a greater appreciation of his qualities.
He died 20th March 2011. A week later, I posted this, asking people to join me in remembering Cat, and all the other pets we have loved and lost. My personal list is pretty long.
Tonight I am asking you to do the same.
Lorely, of writingfromtheedge, had already told me she planned to join in, and then yesterday, posted this.
A while ago, she wrote most eloquently about what our pets mean to us, Four Legs and a Tail are Forever. As her husband said, “We don’t have them forever, but they have us for their-ever.”
If you write something of your own memories, do link it back here, and link my page to yours.