pretty calico cat

Saying Goodbye

pretty calico catAbout 12 years ago, my precious kitty died. I was heart broken, and so my husband brought home a kitten.

Except she wasn’t really a kitten. It turned out that this cat had been turned into the shelter the day before we got her. She’d been given her shots, fixed and chipped, and was still somewhat sedated when my husband brought her home. She was stunningly beautiful. The only note on her chart was “likes to play rough.” Of course, I didn’t find any of this out until months later when I went back to the shelter and asked what was WRONG with this cat???

The guess? She was probably feral.

My dreams of another snuggly kitty quickly evaporated into scratches and tooth marks. I took her to the vet. He explained that cats who look like this one tend to be somewhat schizophrenic.

Being me, I didn’t give up on her. Her name was Elf, which I am certain was short for Evil Life Form.

For years, I worked to connect with that cat, eventually bringing four other cats into the house so that I could have feline companionship, because I wasn’t going to get it from Miss Elf.

My best friend made me watch episodes of My Cat From Hell. Self-proclaimed crazy cat-lady that I now have become, I went out and bought cat toys. The others loved them. Elf adored my husband.

And then a few months ago, I woke up with a cat snuggling me. I petted her and realized that the fur was MUCH longer than any nice kitty we had. I carefully turned on the light to be greeted with this face:

eek mad cat



To put it into perspective, here is her cuddling my husband:



From that day on, Elf cuddled me, too. She would sit on my lap for hours.

It didn’t take long for me to notice that she was ill. She lost weight.

Special food followed, which she would deign to eat if I’d hold the bowl for her.

She’d drink the special water spiked with pedialite — if I’d hold the bowl.

Yesterday, I had to say goodbye to my dear Elf. I was deeply touched that in the end, she turned to me for comfort and love.

She will be missed…

…except for the scratches.

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