Thursday, December 03, 2009

Aveatque Vale: Midnight Kitty

I'm sure you've probably already heard from Doc that our kitty, Midnight, was struck by a car sometime Tuesday night and died, we are sure, instantly. Those who have met us know that I wasn't crazy about this old cat. We adopted her as an adult cat in 1999 from a wealthy family. I remember going to the door of their HUGE house and waiting for the lady of the house gather up Midnight's gear while her many priviliged children stared at me.

I got Midnight in the car and she curled up shivering at my feet as we made the 45 minute drive home. She was scared at our house and she tried to hide in small places, which was tricky because she was HUGE too. Fortunately, she had a bell on her collar at that time and we could usually find her. One day, while we were at work, she got behind the dryer. I couldn't find her, but Doc did. He tipped the dryer towards him and she hopped up on it, then up on his shoulders. Ever since then, Doc has been her favorite.

Don't get me wrong, she could be nice to me if I were feeling sick. She'd snuggle up on my side or back and keep me warm. She was especially fond of me when I was pregnant. But once I had Riley and then Lucy, she and I didn't see eye to eye. I became averse to her and she to me. Every now and then, she'd attack me for no good reason. She'd just be walking past and something in her little kitty brain would just SNAP and she'd jump for my head.

But since the kids are no longer babies, she and I developed a kind of detant. Since I'm the first one up in the mornings, she would make sure I was up at least 10 minutes before the alarm went off. I'd feed her and let her out and go about my day. She'd greet me in the driveway sometimes when I got home or she'd look up and nod "hey" to me if she were in the house. She returned to snuggling with me on my puny days and we grudgingly pressed on together.

Originally, Midnight was an indoor cat, but when we got her, we lived in the country. She was itching to get out and see it all. She'd stay close to the house and was content to sleep near the bird feeders. But eventually, she'd get brave and she started crossing the street to head up the forested hill. We worried about her crossing the street. It was not a busy street, but when someone came down that road, they flew. But she survied and never got hurt.

We eventually moved to a town house in the suburbs, where Midnight didn't get to go out. We tried putting a harness on her, but she would just melt to the floor. It was very strange. She would not stand up if you put a leash on her.

Eventually we came to our current house, which has a great big back yard but is on a busy street. We've been here almost four years and all that time, Midnight has gone outside. One time she left and didn't come home for three days. But other than that, she's stuck close to home and never ventured to the front yard...that we know of.

Sadly, she must have found her bravery or curiousity drove her to try to get to the other side of the street. Adventure lured her and she took the bait. Only to be struck down on the street.

I was punched with a fistful of grief in the gut when I saw her remains. She's been a part of our family for 11 years or so and the girls have never known life without her. We've fed her, cleaned up after her, pet her, endured her moods, and tripped over her in the middle of the night. I blamed noises in the house on her rather than get scared by creaks I couldn't rightly explain. But I will miss that old girl.

Hail and fairwell, Midnight. We'll miss your imperious presence and your warmth on days we feel puny.