Today is March 18, 2017. Today, my beloved little man, Jiji, died. He was 21 years old, going on 22. Let me tell you a little about him.
Jiji was a stray that started hanging around my parents’ house, back when I was still living at home. I’ve always had a soft spot for strays, especially black cats. They get a worse rap. So of course I started feeding him. When he showed up one day with bald patches all over him, I couldn’t help capturing him and taking him to the vet. Turned out the little guy had a bad mite infection. But from that moment onward, he was mine.
Jiji was a scrapper in his younger days. After the third time I had to take him to the vet for stitches (in three different legs, no less) I told him he was cut off, and from that day forth he was an indoor cat. Surprisingly, he took to it rather well.
When I moved out on my own, he of course came with me. He and my other cat, Tiger, weren’t exactly the best of friends, but I loved having the pair of them around. When she died, I hate to say that he became happier, but he always was a bit of an alpha male.
My home burned down almost three years ago, and Jiji was the only thing that I cared about. But he was there, in the wreckage, scared but alive. My little survivor.
Eventually, however, like all of us, old age crept up on him. Jiji’s reflexes deteriorated, and he could no longer control himself. He had trouble eating, and what he did eat melted right off him. I knew it was finally time.
We spent our final day together watching the movie that gave him his name, “Kiki’s Delivery Service”. He curled up into a tiny ball on my lap under the covers. I had trouble reading the subtitles. But it’s a memory I’ll always treasure.
His visit to the vet went surprisingly well. He wasn’t too scared, and it was over easily. He’s out of pains and cares now.
I’ve had cats in my life since I was ten. Today was the first time in thirty years I didn’t come home to a happy, purring face. It’s a rough time. But I loved him, and always will. Someday there’ll be another kitty in my life. I hope it’s sooner than I think it will.