It wasn't so long ago that I was writing a very similar post for another furry friend. In that post, my friend Kim from Fill Your Well, wrote a comment about how in one native American culture they believe that animal friends stay around your feet once they've passed away which I find both incredibly comforting and heartbreaking. As I walked home from yoga last night, I looked around my feet and saw them all and sobbed for all my friends lost.
About two weeks ago, my dad emailed me to say that our indoor/outdoor cat, Carlita, hadn't come home in about three days which is the longest she's ever been away. Carlita is a food hound and so while in summer she'd go out at night to do some recreational hunting for squirrels, chipmunks, and mice, she'd always be meowing by the screen door in the morning to get her breakfast.
My parents have a flock of guinea hens which just hatched 18 chicks. The inability of the chicks to defend themselves means easy prey for predators like coyotes who have decided to lurk near our house in hopes to get some easy food. In fact, they've killed the two mama guinea hens. The fact they've been hanging out and our precious kitty has now disappeared is more than just a coincidence me thinks.
I've found this death harder to come to terms with because I keep hoping that maybe she's just taking a little kitty vacation in a tree house somewhere on our property. I emailed my dad daily asking if she had come home for days like a child unable to bear the news and the truth. And she was so young, only 11, and so funny. As a kitten she always used to walk around with a hook in her tail and we figured she just grow out of that, like kittens do, but she didn't. She wore it proudly, as she sat on kitchen counters as if she was royalty and demanded to be loved.
She had a fantastic sense of humour, slightly sick, but good. We had a dog that was completely blind, and she'd sit up on a chair and when the blind dog would walk by she'd swipe it with her paw with an evil smile on her face.
She was loving and cuddily.
When we adopted her, she was an abandoned by her mama, she stayed in my bedroom until she was old enough to handle being around the dogs. She slept under the blankets of my bed occasionally attacking my feet. She lazily chased string and as a wee kitten always got poop stuck in her paws, but strangely didn't seem to mind getting put in the bath to have it washed off.
It just doesn't seem quite real. I had big plans for going home this Christmas and opening up the kitty door on my bedroom door (cut especially for her) and letting her snuggle with me at night while I slept. For watching her enjoy playing with the decorations on the Christmas tree, and curling up on the green chair (a chair which is green...?) and reading Vanity Fair while she purred lovingly on my lap. For the first time since before I was born, there is not a cat at my parents' house and I honestly cannot comprehend it.
When Inspector Climate came to my house last year, he sat down on a chair and was totally and utterly shocked when Carlita came to sit on his lap for a cuddle. Having only grown up with a shy slightly mean kitty, Inspector Climate refused to move while Carlita was near him for fear that she would leave his lap. Carlita was a sucker for love and wouldn't leave unless you literally forced her off your lap. "take a picture, take a picture" Inspector Climate would insist when she'd cuddle with him made my heart bubble over that he was excited to be with one of my furry friends, but more importantly that she had given my love her furry stamp of approval.
And so, while I can't help but hold out a little bit of hope that perhaps now, weeks later, she'll somehow come home, I must finally say goodbye to the sweetest kitty.