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07 September 2013

to Eric the Joy-Bringer

This is a difficult post to write.
On Monday morning last week, the morning after my 32nd birthday, my son found our cat's body. His soul had parted his body; I won't say he was gone, because I don't think he left right away, but he was dead. He is dead.

...I've been trying to write this post for the entire almost-two weeks since Eric died. Maybe I'm just not ready. Or maybe I've just been focusing on the wrong parts. Let me tell you a little about Eric.

First of all, I didn't name him. He came with that name, a 6 year old, formerly feral, three-legged kitty boy. He had lost his right hind leg after being hit by a car during his feral days. He was rescued and taken to a vet who tried to save his leg, but during the healing process he developed an infection in that femur. They had to remove his leg. He was still a very lucky kitty.

When he came to live with me, he was pretty scared. He'd been living with a who'd had him - I think - since he had first been rescued. He got along with her other kitties and was perfectly happy where he was. Unfortunately, she had a family situation come up and was worried that he might not be happy with the new living arrangements she was going to have to make. So he got to my house - already unhappy with the car ride - and clearly did not understand where his home had gone and why are there huge slobbering dogs trying lick me?! He spent the first few months in my bedroom, and most of that time under my bed.

During that time, I called him Eric the Wonder Kitty, because he caught a mouse and I was amazed that he could do that, considering his reduced mobility.

He played with that poor dead mouse for hours before eating it,
but when I bought him toy mice, he ignored them. Figures.

It wasn't until we moved into a new house, in a new town, that he really came out of his shell. The new place did two things. One, it had better energy than the old place, which had never been a happy place for any of us. Two, the layout was such that he was kinda forced to socialize a bit more. He blossomed like a spring flower.

He didn't care for the collar idea.

Eric the Explorer,
back from checking out the new back yard.
The dirt has met his rolling approval.

This past spring and summer, I took to calling him Eric the Joy-Bringer, because no matter who you were or how little he knew you, if you on his couch, he would come love on you. And when I was really depressed, he would find me and snuggle my face. He just wanted to be loved. And he was.

Are you awake yet?

I love you.

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