Friday, March 14, 2008

One year ago, my precious 18yo daughter died

My Sexy Sad!e: With Me Night and Day

She was there for my adult life, my Sexy Sad!e.
(Post written days after her death.)

Her namesake:

He's got a good ol' friend name o' "Texas Ben"
Tells him all the spots to play
And a sweet little lady, he calls her "Sexy Sad!e"
She's a' with the boy night and day
Brand New Country Star
By: Jimmy

She was there for me when I moved to this state all alone in August 1988 a few months ahead of my husband so he could end his job and I could start mine.

She was there in the pound only five weeks old. She sat sanely in the kitten cage amongst the melee, calm with her head cocked slightly to her right, huge lavender ears tilted askew, her watching me back with a tiny smudge of kitten goo on her forehead.

She was still there two days later when I decided to pursue the adoption, the smudge gone and her amongst the melee of all the other kittens. I knew the calm wisdom she was capable of, though.

She was there for Jell0 the 5+ yo stray I'd just moved up with me, in his transition to being an affectionate stray to being the sweet, wheezy purr you could hear throughout the house.

She was there on my shoulders quickly after I went to answer the door. I'd scooped her up in my hands to keep her from going outside, but I learned the hard way she did not like to be held, so she clawed her way up to pace around my neck. I learned. Do not pick up the Sad!e.

She was there for me as I worked third shift. Floppy, I could position my tiny pair bond how and where I wanted, she was always so easy. Her favorite place was curled up behind my knees as I slept on my side.

She was there on the stairs on the weekends, eyes swollen with tiredness as she tried to persuade me to go up to sleep my customary daytime shift and provide her the 24/7 bedtime co-sleeping company she enjoyed so much.

She was there with Jell.o as we bought our house the next year and they could go outdoors on the more quiet street.

She was there with me in the shower, making me buy clear shower curtains so she could sit on the edge of the tub inside the cotton curtain and watch.

She was there two years later in my deep, lonely sorrow as my husband left for what we thought was a one year tour to Korea in 1991, but painfully lasted 26 months until 1993, negative ground our marriage could never make up.

She was there when precious Jell.o was hit by a car days later and I was otherwise alone to deal with this added layer of sorrow.

She was there on my lap always. She didn't mind the ugly recliner that my husband insisted upon, then Sad!e and I commandeered.

She was there, jealous as many other cats and dogs filtered through our lives, yet retaining her status as Queen.

She was there sneaking in the living room where I spontaneously decided to store the foyer's oriental rug in there last thing before I left for Korea in 1993, still there when I closed tight the French doors.

She was there and alive, somehow, two weeks later.

She was there as I was ill with endo and depression, working full time and going to graduate school, stretched and stretched beyond my means.

She was there as I gardened, by my side and intensely interested. She always thought I did the neatest things.

She was there as I walked outside down the sidewalk, her crying and only following so far, fearful I was going to fall off the edge of the Earth.

She was there as my ex-SIL commented that Sad!e liked to play rough. Sad!e didn't mind a vigorous rubbing, even enjoyed hanging by her tail. [Note to self: sure wish I had videos of Sad!e swinging by her tail and purring, wanting to do it again.]

She was there as my husband left for a new job in Germ.any or Bos.nia in January 1997, there when I learned the next day that I was pregnant after eleven years of marriage.

She was there on that same recliner as I suffered otherwise alone, ill and gestating for the duration.

She was there, my runt of a cat larger than my runt of a baby, although they weighed virtually the same. [Note to self: find the pictures.]

She was there making room on my lap for the new addition, her nine years old by then.

She was there only four months later when we moved and I could only bring one cat, leaving four beloved kitties to be cared for by our friend-renter.

She was there and quite scared with the new digs, but she came to love it and how she could sneak out on the balcony and hop off to go for adventures - and to freak out the dog downstairs.

She was there as a pet for my son, him constantly lectured that other cats aren't so nice, so don't play hard with them.

She was there for me when we moved here in 2002, me heartbroken from my failed marriage and spending too much time in bed.

She was there in the sliding glass door, sunning herself and watching the birds.

She was there on the warm cable box; thank goodness replacing them is free.

She was there, hogging the desk.

She was there minding her own business, not able to hear conversation any longer, but able to hear if I shouted her name.

She was there, following the beam of the flashlight and comforted by it when she could not hear me.

She was there, waiting on me to finish a yummy food so that she could lick the plate of microwave dish. Her most recent favorite was TGIFriday's spinach and artichoke dip.

She was there at the entry door glass, staring at the world and entranced with the notion of the outside.

She was there under the lawn chair, secured by a shiny fuchsia ribbon as a leash.

She was there prowling behind the fences, enjoying both her freedom and her escorts.

She was there in the middle of the game board just last week, like a proper cat.

She was there talking, purring, and responding to me for almost two decades.

She was there by her water up on the bathroom sink, waking me up with her collar tag, drinking the day she died.

She was there by her food, wanting to eat, but couldn't.

She was there downstairs when I left, but climbed upstairs and onto the bed while I was gone on the day she died.

She was there as the daughter I never had.

She was there with such a big heart and wanting so much to live.

She was there peeing on my pillow as an extra, strangely appreciated gift.

She was there laying parallel with me on the bed and sharing my pillow. That's how I remember her the best.

I still love you like no other, my precious Sad!e. I'm sorry you're still in the freezer.


Well-heeled mom said...

Through the tears it was hard to read such a beautiful post.

jess said...

maybe it's time to have a little burial service?

or are you keeping her in the freezer for another reason?


Cricket said...

Thanks, Karen. You would understand.

Jess, J said he wanted to stuff her after we had her put her to sleep. I was not supporting the idea. Then he told ex and, without consulting me if I'd be agreeable, ex said he'd pay up to $500. It was a very difficult offer to turn down b/c of my son getting excited.

I found one guy charging $700 for more elaborate things and this old guy who does a curled up sleeping pose for $400. I actually prefer the latter. Told ex I found someone and he never came through with the money. Ex is very generous in his own head. If he has money, he will spend it. Problem was, we missed that boat.

So I must decide about pursuing it myself.

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful and special cat.
You were very blessed.

HotFudgeNubbins said...

she sounds wonderful!!
i had my old man cat for 15 years and it's sooo friggin hard. even after 5 years he's been gone.

i had wanted him stuffed at the time but my bf thought that might not be the best. after i thought about it i realized i'd be too sad seeing him but him not moving. but i wish i had gotten him cremated and put the ash is something special.
have a great cruise! i hooked up with our waited on one i went on 10 years ago. just for the story really :)
i love reading your blog.

Anonymous said...

oh my, that made me sob. my first lovely kitty is 18 this year. I have all the same feelings for her. She is an old lady, skinny and arthritic, but she still has good energy---I'm hoping she'll make it into her 20's. I have friend who had a couple of cats make it that long.

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful tribute to your Sadie.

Sorry I haven't been around for a while. But I'm back.