Friday, May 13, 2016

#A-TO-Z CHALLENGE 2016 – LETTER ”M” FOR MAMA, CAT MATRIARCH, IN MEMORIAM


It's with sadness that I write this post and highly ironic, for I've sung Mama's praises to the skies since the day she allowed me to be her friend and it took a long time for that to come to pass. Mama died recently after a long and fruitful life. She originally adopted JC, and actually, it's been one year today, since JC's passing, so that too is ironic. I'm not a person who believes in coincidences, or anything of the sort, but she had been JC's cat, and I worried about her after he died. Alex said she's with Jim now. Yes, in some highly disordered form, I guess.


Speaking of highly disordered form; there is no perspective here, but near as I can figure out, I am behind here, on my bed, and that's a map of the us of a on my computer monitor. I have no clue what I was going for here.

Yet, she was so affectionate and even closer to me than she was to him. However, about six months ago, she came down with Distemper and being elderly and having lived most of her life on the streets, she never really came back from it. Outdoor cats have a hard life and she really could not adjust to becoming an all-the-way indoor cat, which is what I would have preferred and once JC died, I had to keep the doors locked all the time – even THAT didn't stop two idiots from getting in, while I was sleeping, woe unto them. Mama ended up crafting her own little pet door in a window screen, so she could come and go as she please. It was perfect.

She spent lots of time indoors, and followed me all around, and when I sat on the porch, she sat on the porch with me. She had two older sons that would come and visit; they looked like her, just so much bigger. Mama was never a big cat, but she had such distinctive markings; such as I had never seen on a cat before. I guess as old Leonardo da Vinci said, “The smallest of the felines is a masterpiece!”, I take it to mean both in the general and the specific. But all of the felines are, big and small.


Gotta love essential tremor. I was asked "is it REALLY essential, why is it called that?" I thought for 5 seconds and my head exploded. Some dumb neurological term. "Dystonia" is muscle cramps. Every picture I take looks like art from the Impressionist Period.

She had her funny ways and ways to drive me crazy. When she was healthier, she played a lot with her toys and would tear around my little apartment and she could literally bounce from the bed into the kitchen, or from the bed into the living room. A friend, Nancy Cooper sent her some artisanal catnip mice and she went crazy over those. One disappeared, as such things often do.

She could be a little con-artist, too, as most cats can be. I was trying to get her to eat a good dry food and for the longest time, she acted like she hated it. So, I was buying her Friskies and feeding her this stuff, which wasn't really that good for her. This went on for a couple of weeks and I cut back on the Friskies, because it was getting expensive. I walked into my kitchen one Sunday and here she was, happily munching on her dry food. She looked up and the look was priceless: “Oooh, I am soooo busted.” I turned and walked out of the kitchen and she came running after me, hollering about how lousy that dry food was.


This looks like a graphics "feature" in Runescape3, where everyone's head melted for a few weeks. Good times. Good times. She shook her head JUST as I clicked the clicker.

But, she had a really wonderful thing that she did. I have 2 towers made out of milk crates on either side of my blogging chair. One holds a board and a mousepad on the right, and the other, on the left, holds a land-line phone, or a laptop. I have two computers in front of me, side by side. Mama would jump up on the right-hand side and “rest” on my mouse pad, or hand and gradually creep her way up my arm.


She's just starting to work her way up my arm. . .

Now this is a cat that I couldn't even look at without scaring 4 years or so ago, and we had gotten to the point, where she had to have some part of her on me, at all times, while she was in the house, or would lie down between my feet. She also slept with me, sort of.

What she mostly did was walk around on my head, knead in my hair, or with her tiny, less-than-dime-sized feet, stand in my ear. Or I'd feel little feet walking all over my face. But, her most endearing quality was when she would sit on my mouse pad, and reach out with one dainty paw and make me look at her. She would look into my eyes and she seemed to show such love and gratitude that she had a home. I will never forget that, ever. Animals grace us with our present and I was gifted with that grace beyond anything I ever hoped to see from her.


. . . Slowly creeping upward. My only regret is that I never was able to get a decent shot of her reclining on my entire forearm. That was pretty funny. She will be missed. Rest well, Mama, my heart!

I haven't said much, only very close friends like Jeremy Doll who is a fellow Leader of SpiritZ and horse enthusiast and all-around animal lover and such a good person, and Alex Cavanaugh and my Aunt Lande. “She was such a nice cat.”, Jeremy said. And that she was. In all the time she was with us, she never scratched, or bit and never got angry or irritated, she was just such a wonderful being. It was hard for me to fathom that someone had abused her, but she was blind in her right eye, and it wasn't from a cat-fight. I know what that looks like. She would occasionally get scared of the kids playing next door and hide behind the toilet and I'd go and take her some sardines.


Alex and I knew she was going to die and I was in West Palm Beach when it happened. My better 2/3, was all for packing up and driving to Tampa, when Alex called. I thought on it for a while, but said, “No. The offer is so lovely, but it's okay. You care. That is all that matters.” I called Alex back and he agreed. She was put lovingly to rest and will never be forgotten. The really wonderful thing is this; Her progeny gave birth to some more of her progeny, and I will have two little great x infinity grandbabies to keep me busy. Kittens are fun, but these will be indoor kittehs, except for playdates with Oso!
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