When I first moved to Kansas City, I spent a couple of months going back and forth to Springfield to finish moving and to complete my last college class. Once I was done, I had planned to go to the shelter and adopt a kitten. I stocked the house with cat food, cat litter, cat toys, etc., then made my last trip to Springfield that Labor Day weekend.
When I returned, there was a little black-and-white cat sitting in front of my apartment door. I had to make several trips back and forth to the car, and she kept following me everywhere. I finally decided to take her in and put some posters up around the apartment complex.
I only received one call. A girl called and said that there was a cat that had been living in the basement of my building, and she and some of the other neighborhood kids had been going downstairs to feed her. She described my new roommate to a "T".
For several years after that, it was just the two of us keeping each other company in that apartment. She watched out for me too, I think. The man I'm about to marry is the only one that I brought home that she ever warmed up to.
She was small, probably never more than about 5 or 6 lbs. But she had all the energy and attitude to make up for it. She routinely beat up on David's nearly 100 lb. dog.
This past Sunday was my mom's birthday. I had planned to call her to wish her a happy birthday, but instead, I called her in tears. Being an animal lover who just lost one of her cats less than a year ago, she could understand what I was feeling.
David and I had stayed home to watch the Chiefs game, and I realized that I hadn't heard anything out of Oreo all day. After some searching, we found her lying under a chair, one of her favorite napping places. When I realized what had happened, I had to leave. David took care of everything else. He said that it appeared to have been something sudden, like a heart attack or something. It was as if she just went to sleep and didn't wake up again.
She picked me. She looked out for me. She made sure there was someone else to take good care of me before she left.
Rest in peace, my pet, my companion, my pocket-sized guardian angel.