“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”
It’s okay to be sad. After all, without sadness, there can be no happiness. On April Fools’ Day, 2001, my crazy next door neighbor knocked on my door and summoned me outside to see the mysterious contents of a smallish cardboard box. I peered inside to find two tiny little balls of black and white mewing fur. I pushed the box away and started to back away shaking my head. I already had two cats of my own and was fostering a silvery-white mama Siamese cat and her litter of kittens. I certainly didn’t want or need any more cats in the house.
But my next door neighbor could be quite persuasive. He told me a friend of his found these two kittens in a dumpster and they needed mother’s milk. Heck, they were only a day old, still had their little umbilical cords attached, and I already had a mother cat who was nursing her kittens right inside. So I reluctantly agreed to take them in.
It quickly became clear that my family of three was going to grow. It was official: I was going to become the dreaded “cat lady” and was doomed to die alone or at least surrounded by all my cats. How could I possibly send little Sugar Ray to live with anyone else after ManRay had taken such a shine to him, constantly cleaning him just as his own as his adopted mama had done? I fell in love with the little pink pads on the bottom of his paws and the white tip on the very end of his very long skinny and swishy tail. If it’s possible for a cat to prefer members of his own sex, then Sugar Ray certainly did. I don’t think it was any accident that it wasn’t until a few months into his life that I even realized he was a boy!
In July, Sugar Ray became very ill and I had to do the unthinkable. On July 8, I had to say goodbye to my darling little man forever. I miss him terribly but am comforted knowing that somewhere he and ManRay have been reunited and he’s happily getting groomed by his favorite buddy in all the land. Safe journeys my little man, safe journeys to you.