Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Fuzzies

I have always had a cat in my house. Not having one would be like not having a bathroom in a house.

When I first moved from North Carolina to Michigan at eighteen, within a month I had adopted Chico. Chico was the feline love of my life. He was all black, sleek, and as he got older, he reminded me of a panther. To me he was perfect, even when he decided twice a year to get out (once in the spring, once in the winter -- he gave up that quickly when his feet touched snow).

Chico was extremely special to me. He was there as I struggled to settle down in Michigan. He was there through the years of abuse with my ex-husband, through the birth of Chase, and through the move to Indiana to live with my Mom (where we adopted Jessica-4 for Chase) and then a move down to South Carolina. He was a constant rock in my life. His wanderlust hit him in 2008, and on Valentine's Day he slipped out when Steve was coming in the front door. My heart shattered. We tried for days to find him. Jessie stopped eating, and cried for him throughout the house. I worried because he was declawed in the front and how he would make it. He was a big boy and he was almost 9. I never gave up hope that he would come home. I even worried when we moved later that November back to Michigan that he would finally come back and nobody would be at our house.I just could not let him go.

Since we moved back north, Steve always offered to go to the local shelter and we could find someone new to bring home. We'd go to the pet store and look at the kitties, and although they were all extremely adorable (and Chase would take them all home if he could), my heart was not ready.

After going to our Humane Society for a year to see the kitties, play with them, socialize with them, I finally decided that I was ready to welcome another fuzzy into our home. We went to the Humane Society with the mindset that we were going to adopt an adult cat (at least 2-3 years old) and a female. She would be close in age to Jess. We looked, we played, we snuggled. We skipped over the many kittens that were looking for homes ("No kittens.. I think we need an adult" I would say). The closest that came to my wants was a black and white young female who recently had a litter. She was sweet, petite, and loved to be held. She was lovely, but she just wasn't it. I finally said "Well, maybe we could look at the kittens. But just look."

They had so many kittens at the time. They were trying to adopt them all out under a "Adopt one, get one free" program. I looked at orange kittens, I looked at gray kittens. I stepped into one of the kitty condos full of black, and black and white kittens. I stood there and looked at all of those little babies and picked up a little all black girl. She was extremely sweet. As I stood there a very determined kitten started to climb up my pant leg. Steve and Chase watched from the window and laughed as this little guy climbed up to my hip before I scooped him into my arms. I put the little girl down in a basket and held this little boy who just purred. I cried. While I held this little boy another determined kitten jumped the 18 inches from the top of a scratching post to my shoulder. I laughed and cried and held them both. I had been chosen.

We brought both of those little boys home. Agent Spottynose is the oldest by 3 weeks so Sage (we changed his name to Lord Saggio of the Land of Spice -- hey, he needed a fancy name like his brother!) is our baby.

Jess was not amused at first with the boys. I kept reminding her that these were her little brothers and she had the right to treat them as so (she tolerates them now -- her true love is still Chase). And that little black and white female we were considering? It turns out that was actually Sage's mom. She was adopted out a week later. :)

Sage and Agent -- the first week home (2010)


During that first week when the boys were home, I had a bad migraine and took Sage to bed with me. I curled him on my head to sleep and I think the heat and the light pressure from him helped the pain go away. To this day Sage is there when my head is hurting. Thankfully he doesn't try to lay on my head anymore (he's eighteen pounds!), but he does like to lay on my back and knead my head for me.

Sage is everyone's baby. He's there for me when my head is hurting, he's a shadow to Steve when he's cooking pasta, and he's a back up kitty parent to Chase. Agent, however, is mine. He is the one who climbed my pants. Agent is a lover and loves everyone (especially my Mom). He is the one that will just sit in my lap whether I am knitting, reading, or using my laptop. He is part of my bedtime ritual and likes to be "made" into the bed. Trimming his toe nails is a game to him. I trim his, he nibbles on my finger nails. He is like a rag doll and will tolerate being dragged by a small child, carried around, and snuggled tight -- he just purrs through it all.

Agent sleeping on Chase's sweater while I was working on the sleeves yesterday. Yes, his feet really are that big! He has extra webbing between his toes!



Sage discovered the suitcase makes an excellent bed. He's a big baby and has many nicknames to reflect that.
It's been a year since we opened our hearts and home to two little kittens who are now growing up to be wonderful cats. I still get a twinge of sadness when I see pictures of Chico, but I am so thankful he was there for me when I needed him most. I hope someone adopted him and realized how special he is, just like I have realized how special our little boys are.

7 comments:

  1. I really enjoyed this post! They look beautiful and so happy :)

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  2. How sweet your cats look! I have not had a cat in many years, but this post make me want to adopt one! If I thought my little dog [Twinkie] wouldn't be heartbroken, I would. xx

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  3. @Swanski

    Thank you :) They bring me such happiness that I thought I should share.

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  4. @Tracey

    What kind of dog is Twinkie, Tracey?

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  5. I too grew up with cats and love them. however, my oldest daughter is allergic. it makes me sad because she loves cats too. when we go to my moms she always plays with the cats. after a couple of hours she gets welts ( guess that's what they're called), itchy red eyes, and sneezes :-(

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  6. @Freedom Three Ugh! That's too bad that your eldest daughter has cat allergies :( Sounds like she's pretty allergic, too.

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  7. Very sweet! I love that you took in all 3.

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