Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Kizzie the Queen of Cats

Our black and white kitty, Uh Huh crossed over the Rainbow Bridge and I missed her terribly. I felt that she was too young at age 8 to have died.

Then Kizzie the cat, AKA Queen Kismet, came to me in a dream. In the dream I went out to our back porch where a tiny kitten Uh Huh sat smiling at me. "Uh Huh what are you doing back here?" I asked. To which she replied, "Now I am Kizzie! I am your next cat" and she leaped into my arms. Needless to say I was comforted by the dream but didn't tell anyone else.

Fast forward a few weeks to a knock on our door. There stood a young boy holding a kitten covered in grease and oil. "We found her in our house, we don't know where she came from but my Mom says you are a cat lady and would know what to do with her" he said extending her to me.

I took her and looked at my husband and said, "We need to take her to the clinic and get this oil off of her before it makes her sick. BUT we are not keeping her!"

At the vet clinic where I worked, I gave her several baths in Dawn Dish Detergent to get the oil off. She was perfectly well behaved, purring the entire time. The next day she checked out as healthy and I began to waver. The seal the deal moment was when I was talking to my husband and told him I might want to adopt her. "Yes, I know" he chuckled, "it's Kismet." At that point I realized Kismet = Kizzie. I told him about my dream and she became our "little orphan girl".

My good friend Dr. Alan Ross was her vet. During the spay surgery, I was assisting him and screamed because  a spider was lowering itself from the surgery light toward her incision. He jumped, I jumped and he swatted the spider towards me. Despite all the chaos, her surgery went well and we shared a laugh at the end. It was just one of the many memorable events with Kizzie.

She was a very regal and mature kitten. Once someone told me she wasn't just a cat, she was too regal and beautiful and must be some exotic breed. She photographed beautifully, her gray fur was shiny and a lovely shade in all her pictures. Over the years I took many pictures of her, she seemed to enjoy posing.

She was a solitary cat for the most part. There were rare occasions when she consented to cuddle with the others, Buddy, Mo and Sniffy. She was probably closest to Mo. They were only a year apart in age. She and Mo would groom one another, bathing each other's faces and ears.

She loved to sleep on my husband, crawling onto him in bed and purring her and him both to sleep. She was a good patient the few times she became ill, easy to pill and give fluids to. She was never one to bite or scratch. All in all the perfect cat.

Over the years she got thinner, quieter, less active. She loved to curl into baskets and boxes. She loved to look out the window and chatter at the birds. She stayed by Maggie the Cat's side when Maggie was dying. She saw many animals come and go and yet she hung on.

I had a vacation scheduled this month and dreaded leaving her. She had begun a slow decline and at her last visit, her blood work was good except for a really high white blood count. The veterinarian deduced cancer, specifically leukemia. We discussed options; chemo would only buy her weeks or maybe months. I opted not to put her through that. I opted to do palliative care and keep her comfortable. I left her in care of a friend with vet experience and laid out plans if she should deteriorate. The ex husband would take her to the vet and make any medical decisions.

The day I was leaving for FL she came out and scratched the scratching post and flicked her tail as if to say "Don't worry, I will be fine!"

I got back from a week in FL to find her about the same, eating, walking about the house. I had a good weekend with her, brushing her, giving her treats, but noticing her slowing down more and more. She would walk a few feet and lie down. She curled into her bed and purred. I knew the signs, I knew what was coming...

On Tuesday I woke up with my throat hurting, I got up and texted my staff that I was taking the morning off. And then I found her lying in the litter box. I set her out on her feet, she tottered over to the cat basket, got in, turned to look me in they eyes and let out a loud "meow". In that instant I knew she was telling me goodbye. I called the vet, got dressed and took her in her basket to the clinic. When we got there her breathing changed and I laid her on the table. I stood there petting her, seeing her struggle to hang on and told it was OK, to let go, to go on to the next life. I kissed her on the nose, she took one deep breath, sighed and passed.

The thing my animals have taught me is that death is not a fearful event, it is just a breath away from Peace. It is the living struggle that tires us. They have taught me to appreciate Life and all its blessings. Being with Kizzie at the end was one of the holiest of holy moments. Fare thee well sweet Kizzie, Queen of my heart. I love you so.