This post is probably more for me than readers of this blog, but today I lost one of my best friends. She was my cat Sammie.
We met each other while she was a stray that hung around the neighborhood. One day, she was injured in a fight (presumably a raccoon) and had one door step to choose in order to get emergency medical help.
Imagine my surprise when I left one day for the law firm to find a bleeding cat on my doorstep. I had been working hellish hours and was only a junior associate, but decided to take the cat to the vet and call in sick. (Sorry Uncle Cooley, I guess that I still owe you a vacation day).
The vet told me that the cat needed major surgery to survive and that they would put the cat to sleep as they didn’t expect a perfect stranger to spend $2000 on a cat whom he didn’t know. (In fact, I didn’t even know the sex of the cat, thus the name “Sam” that I called her on the way to the vet figuring I’d be good either way).
Something hit me when the vet told me that a financial issue would likely be the demise of this soul. At the time, I had no money. It was before the Gunderson salary wars and I was struggling to pay a mortgage. But something told me that in the grand scheme of things I’d never remember the money, but always remember my decision.
And I did remember my decision. Every day. Until today, she greeted me at the door every time I came home. She went to sleep in one of my arm pits most nights and certainly every weekend nap. She made herself the host of the house and welcomed in pets and people where she could entertain (and get some rubs in as well). She converted many a cat-hater to cat admirer. She managed to find that perfect spot of sunlight to lie in no matter how many homes we’ve had since.
Through all the good and bad days, she was always concerned more about me than herself. I have never seen an animal behave so selfless that way. In fact, I think she secretly liked when I had surgeries so that she would have me to tend to. She took care of me much more than I did of her.
And even today, after she had a clot that paralyzed her back legs and caused her tremendous pain, she waited for me to wake up until she meowed for me to help. Once again, she was thinking of me.
I’ll miss you dear Sammie. Here are some of my favorite pictures of her.