November 4th, 2019

Adventure, Just things, Uncategorized

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You will be missed so much…

Today we lost a long-time family pet.

Kona had a great 16 or so years. Or, I should say, WE had a great 16 or so years being lucky enough to have her in our lives. She was always there and with her unconditional love she helped us get through some tough times in our lives. She loved hiking and road trips and she went off-roading with us every time we went – she just enjoyed being with her humans no matter what we were doing or where we were doing it.

And we really loved being with her as much as she loved being with us.

When we went to look at her as a fuzzy little puppy we got there early to be first in line. Some other people tried to do an end run and get her first. There was literally almost a fight over her but Meghan and I prevailed and took her home. She was part of our family and along with Lakota we were her pack.

When Meghan went off to college I kept Kona at my house since she couldn’t live with her in the dorm. That dog followed me everywhere and always kept me within eyesight (much like Rider does). She would even circle wide and herd the cat out of the kitchen. So many stories and fond memories of her.

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Kona on one of our last four-wheeling adventures together

I may have written about this before (I’m not really in the mood to go back and look…) but want to say it again if I did. I thought about how, and how much, pets are entwined in our lives when Lakota died the day I lost my job nearly eight years ago. They are always there, quietly supporting and living us through life’s highest of highs and the lowest of lows; from the moment we bring them home until the very end they transcend all of the events in our lives for the short time they are with us whether events are happy or sad – the relationships beginning and ending, the new jobs and new places to live several states away, loss of family and friends. And, much like the loss of family and friends, the loss of a pet is also a loss of a loved one as well as another link to our past.

I will miss seeing her when I visit but she will always be there. We were so lucky to have you, Kona. You were a great companion.

Thanks for having us in your pack.

R.I.P., Toonces

Just things, Uncategorized

We lost our cat today. I would have to say that this sucks.

Toonces, who came into our lives about 21 years ago, used up all of her nine lives down to the very end. One day we were walking in the park near our house in KS and this scruffy black kitten walked up to Meghan. She was two at the time, and said “Can we make her mine?”. She was kinda cute as kittens usually are – that is what makes them so damned addictive. She must have figured “my job here is done and I now have a place to live so screw the hygiene!”. She never really grooming herself much. Ever. You could brush her and she just didn’t look that way for very long.

She was a good cat, but with an attitude… never really friendly until my cat Bob died a few years back. After that she seemed to come out of her shell since she was then the only cat in the house. She would sleep next to me after he died, seemingly trying to fill that void as best as she could.

Like most pets, she asked for little in return – a sunny place on the carpet to stretch out, a butt-scratch here and there, some food, water, and the occasional treat. She had lost some hearing and vision the last few years but was still the same scruffy, loveable cat who wanted attention… albeit on her own terms.

She and Kona (the dog) went to live with Meghan a couple of years ago after she was settled in and I was moving out of CO. She was doing okay, but starting to show signs of age. Recently, she started to decline rapidly, and “The Decision” had to be made. It is a tough decision to make knowing what the final outcome is; it has to be not only what is best but also the least selfish, and that is a tough line to unblur.

They say you should never have to bury your kids. Our pets are, for the most part, our “kids” and we usually see them through from start to finish. They are also a link to the past… of old times, tying us to certain events or people in our lives. It is so hard to not see them and know that they are now gone, yet we now know that their suffering has gone away. Not only have we lost someone we love, but a little bit of our past is lost, too. Our previous pets that we lost had been around for quite a stay as well. Bob the Cat was about 15 when we lost him, and our dog Lakota was 16. Toonces was the last one of that era of our lives.

It is with a very heavy heart I bid you farewell, Toonces.