Please indulge me today because this post has absolutely nothing to do with quilting. Its all about love and loss.
Our senior citizen cat Ed went to sleep today for the very last time, curled up in a ball with my fist resting against his forehead. I whispered to him that he was leaving on a magnificent journey to a wondrous place and he twitched that beautiful tail one last time…then, just like that, quietly and peacefully, he became one of our family’s most treasured memories and the stuff of legends.
I’m all cried out right now; already I miss him terribly ; and because I cannot write a eulogy today, I thought I’d tell you all the story about how he came to live with us. Here is a recap of a blog post I wrote way back in 2005.
Our cat’s name is Ed. This was not my idea. I wanted to call him Mouse – Because when I brought him home from the breeder, he was just a tiny wee thing with blue eyes and a little pointy face. Grey of course with a tiny wisp of a tail. He sure didn’t look like a Maine Coon Kitten…and I still think that was a hunk of hooey. He’s as much a Maine Coon Cat as I am an elite runner. (NOT).
Anyway, my sweet husband did not want a cat. He was still grieving over a very bad pet year in which we lost our beautiful sheltie – Daisy and our regular tomcat – Luke – both due to serious and heart breaking diseases. So, last August when our granddaughter was visiting, she and I sneaked off one afternoon to the cattery and chose a beautiful kitten. He was a splendid specimen – beautiful plumed tail, green almond shaped eyes, tufted ears, everything anyone would want in a kitten, worth every penny of the $$$ that they wanted me to spend. Then just before I plunked the money down, I heard ”Awww, look grandma, isn’t he cute, he’s so little, he looks so sad. Is there something wrong with him, can we pick him?” In her arms she was clutching a little grey kitten. His fur was all wonky, his eyes just little blue slits, and he had these absolutely huge feet – looked more like a rabbit’s feet than those of a cat. Way too many toes…as it turns out, 6 toes on each front foot, and 7 on each back foot – 2 more on each foot than required. The breeder said No, he’s fine, he’s just had a rough start because he is so much smaller than his brothers and sisters were. He was the tiniest of a 10 kitten litter and had to fight hard to feed and for his mother’s attention. So, the granddaughter is looking at me with her big blue eyes and the kitten is looking at me with his little blue eyes. The breeder lady tried to talk me out of taking him of course, because she knew I wouldn’t put out the whole $$$ for this wretched little thing, but on the other hand, what on earth would she do with him if we didn’t take him. An equitable agreement was subsequently reached.
So, home we went, granddaughter cooing to her new baby, the baby all snuggled into her arms, doing his best to purr, something he had apparently never done before in his short life and me with a smug smile on my face. I had the perfect situation going on. I knew hubby wouldn’t be able to say no to the granddaughter, I knew I could be somewhat honest with him regarding the price I had to pay. (As always, there are some things that husband’s just don’t need kto know. Actually I believe I told him that they gave him to us for free…).AND I WOULD GET TO KEEP THE CAT, which by the way, was already getting cuter by the minute.
The only thing left to do was give him the perfect name. Granddaughter and I discussed this very important topic all the way home. She was learning towards Storm or Spooky because he was grey and kinda freaky looking (her words, not mine). As aforementioned I was pretty sure his name was going to be Mouse. Then, an epiphany struck, “we’ll get grandpa to suggest a name and we’ll put all the choices into a hat and pick one out”, I said.
Into the house we marched and placed the new baby squarely on grandpa’s lap. Grandpa looked at me with his stern (ha ha) blue eyes. I looked back at him, batting my baby blues, trying my hardest to look winsome, and at the same time, calm and determined. He looked at the kitten, the kitten looked back at him; he looked at the granddaughter, the granddaughter looked back at him…and he sighed… loudly and for a long time. And battle was over that quick.
We told him our suggestion about naming the cat. He looked at both of us, then down at the kitten and said. “No, if there is going to be another cat in the house, which I didn’t want by the way, I will have the naming of him”. We were in no position to disagree. Hubby took the kitten upstairs, placed a few drops of cream in a saucer, watched baby kitten lap it up…remember this kitten had never before in his little life not had to fight for his breakfast. Hubby watched him eat, saw how quickly his little belly got all plump and round and apparently had an epiphany of his own. Down the stairs he came to pronounce the naming of the cat. He said and I quote “from today onward, this fine young lad will be known as “Fat Eddy”.
And that my friends is how Ed came to be top cat at our house. He was a lovely big grey tomcat with a sweet disposition, an affinity for cream and purring loud and long into the night. We love him and will miss him forever.