When Grant and I got engaged, we were both 19, and decided we wanted to be at least 30 before we had kids. Well, we all know how that worked out, but it was our plan! Instead, we acquired a few pets and spent our time caring for them.
One of those pets was a tiny kitten, found inside a cave. Grant found a litter of kittens while hiking one day. He checked back all day and the mom was nowhere to be found. He came home, told me, and we immediately went back to get them. It was difficult, and we were only able to rescue two of the kittens. We chose one of the kittens to keep and a friend adopted the other one.
Baby Phat became part of our family. She lived in three different houses with us, and greeted four new family members. She lived a long, happy life with us.
Baby Phat was the last of the pets we adopted during our childless years. All of the other pets passed away years ago. About a month ago, we noticed a tumor on her belly. It rapidly turned into several tumors over her body. Cancer. There wasn't anything we could do.
We knew we would have to say goodbye soon. As I watched her decline, all the memories kept popping into my head.
We had to feed her and her brother with a bottle because they were just about a week old. The kittens slept curled around Grant's neck. One night, just a few days after we found them, Grant woke up and freaked out because he smelled poop. I turned on the lights, and Grant was horrified to discover the kittens had diarrhea all over his neck and chest. It was repulsive, and turned into middle of the night showers, baths, and laundry. I'm actually laughing as I type this, because it was horrifyingly hilarious, and we still tease him about it!
She preferred to stay in the basement when we moved to our new house. Her favorite spot was the rafters in the laundry room. She would sleep up there, and would peek down at people as they walked below her. She would even leap out of the rafters and land at our feet. She scared so many people that way!
When she finally ventured to the main living area, she decided she loved to sleep next to our babies. She was usually found sleeping in their cribs or bassinets with them. Liam was her newest cuddly friend. They slept together in his bassinet almost every night. Once she got sick, she chose to sleep at the foot of Lexie's bed and that's where she stayed until a few days ago.
She loved to race through the house at top speed, chasing nothing, and she was terrified of her tail. As soon as she would see it move, she would jump and run away from it.
She hid in our bedroom, and only came out after the kids went to bed. People didn't even know we had a cat! She had the same routine every night. As soon as they were silent, she would come out, jump up on the arm of the couch next to where I usually sat, and sit next to me until we went to bed.
Yesterday, we said goodbye to our sweet cat.
As our entire family gathered to bury her in the backyard, Grant and I struggled to keep our emotions in check. It truly was the end of that part of our lives, and it really hit us just how quickly 14 years flew by.
I'm happy she is at peace, and I'm happy we were able to provide her with a good home, but saying goodbye was so difficult.