This morning I opened my email to find a lovely letter from my oldest daughter, Shannon, who is back in the states with her husband Sam. Towards the end of the letter, she gives me the sad news that one of our beloved family cats, Meeney, is dying of cancer, and will probably not live to see his 22nd birthday, which is coming up shortly. His brother Miney passed away last year.
I am so sad today. The tears just won't stop falling. I know. 21, almost 22 years is a ripe old age for a cat! Although I knew these guys would not live to be 100, it never occurs to me that they will not be with us always. And now the time has come that I have to reconcile that both of them will be gone. Where did those 22 years go??? I distinctly remember bring these little tiny kittens home , they were 5 or 6 weeks old, little scrawny things. They came from the horse farm where I was taking lessons at the time, from a litter of 5: Einey, Meeney, Miney, Moe and Xerox ( who was the carbon copy of his father Ditto). They were in danger of being trampled every day by the herd of horses coming and going, so the owners were trying to find good homes quickly, before some untimely event occurred to one or more of these little creatures. I am not a cat person, but I had 2 little girls at home who needed a pet (that was my idea, not theirs!). So two of them came home with me- almost identical orange tabby little kittens.
Meeney and Miney have been faithful companions to my girls and myself over all these years. When I got divorced 11 years ago, the cats also moved out with the girls and me. When the girls moved to live with their father, they took the cats along with them. There has always been a special quality about Meeney and Miney. I find cats to be aloof, which doesnt suit me, but these two are not. They are people cats, Meeney in particular. Rather than be off on his own, he perferred to lounge around your neck. Or be right with you, whatever you were doing. There were even days when he wanted to drive the car with me. The girls and I often made long trips to our beach house in Delaware, with the cats along in our Dodge caravan. On the first few trips, we took them without cat carriers, loose in the car. Meeney insisted on handling the gas peddle for me. It wasn't long before they learned to make that trip in a carrier - safer for all of us!
And now today I have to face the incredibly sad news that this dear dear family member is suffering from cancer. I'm mad at myself that I am here having the adventure of my lifetime and my pet is dying at home without me. But I have solice in the fact that he has had a long happy lifetime with us, we have wonderful memories of him and his brother, and that Shannon is home with him making his last days comfortable.
Thanks, Meeney, for being a special part of our lives.