pets

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We have a new cat! Well, not new in the sense that she’s new (she’s 2 years old) or even particularly new to us (we adopted her around Thanksgiving last year). But, she’s new to Jeez-o-petes. Of course, considering I haven’t posted anything since October, I guess a lot of things are new to Jeez-o-petes. I mean, babies have been conceived and BORN since I last wrote anything here.

Whatever. I’m back. With a cat. (You know how I roll.)

So, sure, I could just tell you about her, but I figured, hey! I’m a journalist, right? Why not do an interview? Happily, she agreed to participate for a small fee (wet food for dinner instead of kibble), and so, let me present our newest addition: Trixie.

Me: Thanks for agreeing to the interview, Trix!

Trixie: How long until dinner?

Me: Hahaha, that’s funny. So, why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself.

Trixie: I wasn’t actually joking, but fine. Um, hi, I’m Trixie. I started out on the street and still totally have all my moves, so you best not cross me, woman.

Me: Noted.

Trixie: And those dogs? Tell them, too.

Me: Will do. Now, how do you feel about your roommates, Rudi and Hollie? What’s your relationship like? I’ve noticed that you’ve actually rubbed up on Rudi a time or two recently.

So close, yet so far ...

Trixie: The black one, Rudi … she’s okay. But Hollie? *mumbles under breath* Where did you find her? She’s … got a lot of energy. And good grief, is she loud.

Me: This is true. But, it must be said, Trixie, you’re quite the talker. Why do you have so much to say?

Trixie: Why is my bowl empty so much? And why do you get to eat all the cheese? LIFE IS UNFAIR.

Me: Umm, your bowl is empty because you throw half to the ground while eating it. What’s up with that?

Trixie: Lady, I’ve watched you eat pizza. I don’t really think you have any room to talk.

Me: Hey, let’s change topics! Trixie, what’s your stance on laps?

Trixie: I don’t trust them.

Me: So, the other night when you actually laid on my lap for a minute …?

Trixie: It was a mistake. Let’s never speak of this again. Now, seriously, woman, where is my tuna? And could I get a nibble of that cheese, you think?

 

Trixie was adopted from Puppy Hill Farm Animal Rescue, an organization for which I’m a volunteer and a board member. Trixie was found behind an apartment building with a litter of kittens and was available for adoption for months before Jared and I found her and brought her home. She has a few quirks, but she’s been a great addition to the family. She loves hanging out in the kitchen and chatting us up when we’re making dinner. She bats at Hollie every chance she gets, and I give it another six months before I find her cuddled right up against Rudi. It might be another six months before she’s totally comfortable cuddling up with Jared and me, but that’s okay. We’re not going anywhere. And Rudi is the best snuggler in the family, anyway.

 

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This weekend, we had to say goodbye to our cat, Meeko. She was, as Jared put it, “the best foot-warmer, sink drinker, and bathroom buddy ever.” She was all those things and so many more.

Jared already had Meeko when I met him, and his obvious love of her was one of the things I immediately dug about him. It took a long time before I ranked anywhere near him in her eyes — I could be petting her, feeding her treats, but if he got up and walked away, she’d jump off my lap and trot on after him. Nothing personal, I know, he was just her world.

Little by little, she came to love me — not as much as Jared, of course, but I think I became a very close second. In the last few years, after he started traveling more for work, she started falling asleep over on my side of the bed. A purring cat is better than a warm glass of milk when it comes to facilitating relaxation and sleep, let me tell you.

In addition to loving those of us who fed her and scooped her poop, she also loved sunbeams, balls of paper, chewing on plastic bags, running water, and curling up on available laps.

If you’ve been following this blog for a while, you might remember that we almost lost Meeko a year ago. Her kidneys were failing, which is pretty common in older cats, and she was having some crazy thyroid problems. We got her stabilized (although she continued needing a pill twice a day and fluids injected a couple of times a week), and, well, we got an extra year. We knew it was borrowed time, but that doesn’t make it much easier when you see the end coming.

We spent her last morning petting her, feeding her tuna, and memorizing her sweet little face. She died very peacefully in the arms of the person she loved most in the world. For that, I’m thankful. I’m also a little surprised at the different ways she made herself part of my day, and all the ways I’m missing her.

I knew it would be weird to work without having her lay on my desk, batting pens off the side and drinking out of my water glass. I assumed it would makeĀ  me sad to look over at where her cat tree and litter box were. I didn’t realize I’d tear up every time I went into the bathroom and didn’t have to wait for her, or how I’d turn the sink faucet on — just a trickle — for her to drink and then realize she wasn’t there.

She was pretty talkative, too, and every time I hear a strange noise, I look around to see what she needs. The kitchen is sad because she’s not standing in the middle of it, staring at us and willing us to give her food or a new water bowl or attention or who even knows what she wanted. When I let the dogs out in the back yard, I realized I could leave the door to the screened-in back porch (which we got for Meeko) open, because we didn’t have to worry about her getting outside.

The first night I slept in our bed without her, I kept thinking I felt her jump up on the bed. Jared found himself being careful when he moved so as not to kick her.

The dogs know something is up — I don’t know that they really realize she’s gone, or, if they do, if they, like, miss her, but they definitely had their own little dynamic. Mainly, Meeko was in charge. They could come up and sniff her, and even put their noses right on her, as long as she wasn’t looking at them. If they approached her head on, forget about it — she’d let them know who was boss and encourage them to find another route. They always listened.

This is going to take some time to get used to. And even though it hurts, I’d rather have the pain that goes along with the memories than forget about her easily. She was just a tiny little thing, but the hole she left behind is bigger than I can explain.

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I’m thankful that our families came to stay with us this Thanksgiving. I’m thankful that I don’t have to work today. I’m thankful that nobody expected me to go shopping with them (or for them) on Black Friday (oh god, I’m shuddering just thinking about it). I’m thankful that there’s plenty of wine leftover, though since I bought a case, I’m not exactly surprised.

And I’m still thankful for my fun new camera.

I'm thankful that Jared handles the frying of the turkey.

I'm thankful for CityMama's jalepeno corn pudding recipe (and I'm not the only one).

I'm thankful that my family and friends don't give me a hard time for having lots of veggie-friendly side dishes.

I'm thankful that there are leftovers in the fridge.

I'm thankful that everybody had a great time.

I'm thankful that my parents have a new kitty. Meet Tebow.

I'm thankful that Mom and Dad get to dogsit for this sweet lug, Zach. He and I went running. I'm not sure it was pretty, but it was a good time.

I’m also thankful to have this little blog. I love the outlet it provides me, and I love that it allows me to share with those I know and those I don’t. And I love that it’s little enough that it doesn’t really matter that I haven’t posted every day this month.

What are you feeling thankful for?

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