Two nights ago we said good bye to our old cat and dear friend, Midnight.
We came home from our 3 week trip and found that she was purring madly. But after spending some time with her it was clear to us that something was amiss, so we took her to the emergency vet. They quickly did a physical examination and found a pretty large tumor by her digestive organs that appeared to be a bullseye for cancer. We could’ve put her through a barrage of tests but the doctor felt she wouldn’t survive more than a day or two, much less an operation.
So we let her go.
For those that knew Midnight you might’ve known her as a very chatty cat. Constantly talking if she felt the need. And she did. Quite often. She stayed away from people most of the time when she was younger, preferring the company of Mel and I to other folks or animals. That warmed up a little more as she got older but that mostly consisted of her showing herself to dear friends and family. She was never mean, she was just private, much like her parents.
She could also be quite elusive when she needed to be. So much so, a lot of folks who’d known us for years hadn’t even known we owned cat. In a lot of ways I think Middy liked it that way. Either, meowing her head off upstairs when guests were here, only to come downstairs after everyone left to be with us. Or simply going silent, disappearing when she needed to dissolve away and be alone.
I often envied her ability to do that.
She was also quite old. Mel got her full grown from a shelter when she attended college in New Hampshire. She had rented her first apartment and needed some company while I was away finishing up at UVM. Melinda picked Middy because she danced for her when she reached down to pet her. In fact she danced like that all the way until the end (I like to think she’s doing it right now). We estimate she was anywhere between 15 or 18 years old when she passed, so she lived a good long life.
Still, we feel her absense acutely. For such a small creature she had a huge presense. She slept with us everynight, joined Mel for yoga every morning, and always seemed to curl up next to me whenever I/we read a book, took a nap, or watched a movie on the couch together. She was slight, but heavy at the same time, constantly letting us know she existed in this big world. She also loved to play at the most random times. Mostly by herself, but also with us once and a while.
She was many, many things. But mostly she was one of our oldest friends and advocates. She was ever critical of the trivial things we did (moving around in bed, not paying attention to her quick enough, closing the bathroom door when we showered…etc), but she also was the quickest to forgive. For such a small package she seemed to have endless space in her heart for us and all of our faults. We’ll always love her for everything she was, good and bad.
She was truly one of a kind and as sad as we are with her absense, we are grateful for the space she made for us in her tiny world. We’ll miss you Midnight. I’m not sure where you went, but where ever it is, they got damn lucky this week.
Thank you for everything you gave us. I can only hope we gave you a fraction of the same.