Saturday, April 01, 2006

In Honor Of my Beloved Companion for the past 17 years: Mercedes Valentine

We had to put my 1st baby, Mercy, to sleep yesterday because he had diabetes. He hadn't been looking good for a few months and we thought it was still an allergy he had. Once we realized it wasn't the allergy, we thought maybe he had worms. We had him tested this week and it wasn't worms either. So, Michael took Friday off, figuring what was probably going to happen, and he and Mercy went to the vet and only Michael came back. It was a really rough day for me. In honor of him, I am making a Saturday Seventeen.

1. He was born on Father's Day of 1989. My college roommate and I went to get kittens from an ad in the paper. She got an orange cat and named him Micky and I got the runt and named him Mercy. They had identical markings but one was orange and white and the other was black and white.

2. I took him to get spayed but he ended up neutered. It took me quite awhile to get over calling him "she."

3. I named him Mercedes because he zoomed around everywhere, as a kitten. His middle name was Valentine because he had a heart shaped black mark on the back of one of his legs.

4. I used to take him to work with me when I worked at UNM. I helped migrant workers' children earn their GEDs. He was their "mascot."

5. One time he got scared and ran away from work. I found him by his extremely loud cry. He had burned part of his paws on the hot pavement and had to wear bandages on his paws for about a week.

6. When he was declawed, they messed it up really bad. His paws were sensitive forevermore. You could really tell who he trusted, by who he would let touch his paws. They also left one partial claw in there.

7. I had only had dogs before him so I trained him like a dog. He would sit, stay, and fetch. He used to meet me at the door everyday too. And, occasionally, when he was in a good mood, he would walk on a leash.

8. Because I was in college when I got him, he had to work hard to get my attention away from my books. He would lie on top of my books and papers to get attention. He kept up with that for the rest of his life, loving to lay on filler paper or open books.

9. When I got another cat, he didn't purr for about a year. I guess he forgave me after that.

10. He didn't like to ride in the car. He would curl up where the passenger's feet would be and meow the whole time.

11. He once saved my ex husband and I from a fire. We lived in an apartment that was long with one hallway. I got up one morning to start some water boiling and got back in bed to keep warm. A potato chip bag accidentally caught on fire and then spread up a decorative towel on the wall. The whole wall went up in flames, but David and I had no idea. Mercy came in meowing frantically. We tried to ignore him but he started biting us and trying to pull at us. We got up to see what on earth was up and saw the fire. We were able to get past the burning wall just in time before the hallway was completely blocked off and we would have had to jump from a 2nd story window. He was our hero. :-)

12. He used to sleep on my head. It was very cozy in the winter.

13. He used to be very big (about 20 pounds and it wasn't fat, he was just a BIG cat) and my friends would all tease me by saying he was a fat cat. I always said he wasn't fat, he was just fluffy. :-)

14. The last few months he had started becoming very hungry, to the point of ravenous. Although we understand why now, and it isn't really funny that he was so hungry, a few of our favorite memories were because of this.... One day we were eating pizza and we had the pizza on the coffee table. He picked up a whole (large) piece of pizza and tried to sneak away. The pizza was bigger than him and it was so funny watching him try to be sly.

15. His favorite place to sit was on the back of the couch. If I was eating on the couch, he would put his front paws on my shoulder and try to climb onto my plate or take food out of my mouth.

16. He was very friendly. He didn't have the usual "uppity cat" attitude. He always came to see whoever was here visiting and see if they wanted a lap companion.

17. He ruled our roost. Even though Madison (our lab) was 10 times bigger than Mercy, Mercy would keep Maddi in line with a quick slap on her nose. Shooky quickly learned who was the Alpha Male in the house and, although he tried to test him, Mercy consistently proved he was the "bigger man." Our little, old man cat, kept our two, silly, dumb dogs completely out of his way or would remind them with a little whooping. It was actually quite comical to watch.

I had him 1 year shy of half my life and I miss him terribly. I hope he knows how much he was loved.


The Zandi Zoo said...

I'm sorry, friend. :-( Thank you for sharing your kitty memories with us. I was laughing at the thought of him carrying the pizza. LOL! Funny cat. Glad he saved your life too. :-) ((HUGS))

NeeCee said...

I am so sorry for your loss! I know that our animals quickly become family, so this is like lossing a valuable family member. Thank you for sharing a piece of his life with us.

Melanie said...

I'm so sorry.. and I know you will miss him... but I bet Jacob is having fun playing with him right now! I can just picture him laying on top of the Book of Life!

Heather said...

:( I'm so sorry.....

Email me sometime...we still need to get together!!

Amelia Antwiler said...

What great memories you have of this cat. It is like losing a family member - so thank you for sharing your memories with me.

An Ordinary Mom said...

I am sorry for your loss. I remember having to put my black lab dog down in high school - it was so hard to do, but he was suffering so much. I still don't like to think about it.