I am a huge believer that animals come into our lives when we need them. Minou arrived in our home like a fabulously furry whirlwind four years ago and has now left us in a sea of tears.We’d lost our beloved Hank after thirteen years and never thought anyone else could replace him. He was such a character who’d joined our family as a tiny kitten the very same week as my daughter Idgy was born seventeen years ago and shared her cradle and her life until they were teenagers. We were devastated when he died and a few weeks afterwords my lovely friend Madge took matters into her own hands and told me I just had to look for another cat as soon as possible and promptly started searching cats looking for homes on the internet. Lo and behold there was Minou with a little advert saying ‘Her name is Minou and she loves chicken’ and there was this beautiful ten-year old Bengal cat looking straight at me, how could I refuse.
When I saw her I fell in love. A town cat not used to sharing with other animals it came as something of a shock to her to find ferrets and other cats in the immediate area.
Like the star she was she soon rose to the occasion and swiftly achieved a queenly position of authority over both four and two-legged residents.
Country life of sheep, mud, streams and snow took a bit of getting used to and her antics and little mishaps made us laugh, smile and fall more and more in love with this little leopard like cat.
She took Idgy through those traumatic teenage years where life seems shitty and only your best furry friend can possibly understand you.
For me she was my furry rock, a true friend who held no judgement whatsoever and loved me unreservedly when my life spiralled out of control and I was lost in a sea of depression and anxiety. Minou was the sponge to dry my tears, the ears to listen to endless woes and the fabulous furry little friend to cuddle and hug when I thought I couldn’t take any more.
She saw me at my worst and has been there every step of the way on my long drawn out recovery. I owe darling Minou a huge debt of gratitude.
Minou had kidney problems for the past two years and just over the past couple of weeks had been getting thinner and slowing down. Last Sunday she had a hideous seizure and although she recovered she started to go downhill fast.
We shared the sofa by the fire and sunshine in the garden for her last precious days. Every single minute a gift to be clung to and cherished. On Friday she lost the use of her legs and we knew it was time to say the dreaded goodbye.
We’ve all cried so much this week I didn’t think there could be any tears left. Oh how wrong I was. It is so very, very hard to say goodbye to someone who has given so much love and support and asked nothing in return.
I look at these photos and all those wonderful memories flood back. Her stealing chicken from the fridge when we first got her, her love of running water and always having to be ready to turn on a tap, even drinking hot bath water as if it were the best cup of tea. My proudest moment when in February this year she walked for two miles with me in the snow all the way to my friend Ali’s house and back talking cat chat all the way.
My heart is full of memories, love, sadness and so much gratitude to have been blessed by her precious presence for four wonderful years.
Minou I love you.