We first saw you at the small farm that borders our neighborhood. You and your brother were the friendliest kittens. A few months earlier, we had said goodbye to our 14 year old cat, Kiwi. NO MORE PETS, we said. Ha!
Together, I called you and your brother The Mango and Loki Comedy Hour. You were so entertaining, and so different from each other. You were small, with the softest orange tabby fur. You loved to be held and when you wanted attention, you would roll on your back and show your belly. And you had the sweetest face: Mango Kitten Face. Your brother, Loki, is long, tall, and big, with white and grey tabby markings. He doesn't want to be held and you better not touch his belly: Loki the Lemur.
The two of you were always together, whether outside or wanting to come in to eat and sleep. When I was in the garden, you would come to greet me, followed by your brother. Or, when I walked under the wisteria covered pergola, out would pop two cat heads to greet me from above.
Sweet Mango, I will miss our early morning walks around our neighborhood. I would get my coffee and you and Loki would be waiting by the front door. As I slowly walked, the two of you would explore every shrub, tree, and drainage pipe.
You were only 14 months old, Mango, when we said goodbye. First came the fever. Your tempature got as high as 106.9. We thought we'd lose you. After two weeks, you started to recover. Your tempature was normal and you appetite was back. You were hungry and wanted to eat, but would start gagging and couldn't swallow. The doxycycline prescribed for your fever had caused a stricture in your esophagus. We paid for three "balloon" procedures to open the stricture so you could eat. A month after the third procedure, you developed aspiration pneumonia, and that's when we knew you'd been thru enough.
The night before, you and Loki had a wonderful time inside, stalking and chasing each other, playing in the cat tunnel. Like old times. The next morning, we had a great walk. Your appetite wasn't good and, as the day passed, I could tell you weren't feeling well. When the vet took your temp, 105, and diagnosed pneumonia, we knew it was time to say goodbye. You hated the purreed food and you wanted to be outside with your brother.
It was right the decision but we miss you so much. Every time I see Loki, I still look for you. Out of the corner of my eye, I'll see something orange, like a terra cotta pot, and for a micro second, I expect to see you. I've been thru this before and I know life goes on, but it still hurts so much. How does such a small creature become such a big part of my life?
RIP Mango Kitten Face July 2016 - 28 Sep 2017