Some of you know that last week our family said good-bye to our cat, Oscar.
It was a bittersweet time. It's always hard to lose someone you love, and we were very sad to see him go. But we were comforted slightly in knowing that he would finally be free from the suffering he had endured at the end of his life.
I think it would be an appropriate time to share Oscar's story.
It started in March of 1999. I was going to University and Scott and I were 2 months away from getting married. My roommate, Jessica, who worked as a Vet Technician, came home one day with a tiny animal in her shirt pocket.
I almost had a hard time recognizing him as a kitten, as he was only three days old, his eyes weren't open yet, he didn't have a lot of fur, and frankly he looked more like a drowned rat.
Obviously I hadn't had much experience with baby animals up until that time. But that was about to change.
This poor kitten had been abandoned by his mother, as she was only about 9 months old when she gave birth. His only other sibling had not survived the abandonment. But Oscar was a fighter.
He came home with Jessica and the two of us started taking care of him right away. We made him a warm home out of a shoebox, a hot water bottle, some soft towels, and a couple stuffed animals.
We bottle fed him every two hours around the clock. This was no small feat, as we were both full time students, Jessica also worked quite a bit and I was planning to move back to Ontario just couple of weeks before our wedding.
But we set our alarm clocks and took turns getting up with him at night. We ran home to feed and check on him in-between classes and during lunch breaks. We coordinated schedules and made it work. We saved our pennies to pay for his food and supplies.
Within a few weeks it was apparent that he was growing, thriving, and starting to get really cute.
However, in the meantime, we found out that the apartment we were living in had a strict NO PETS rule. And even though Jessica and I could most likely have kept him a secret from the management under ordinary circumstances, at least for a while, we had another problem.
There were two other roommates living with us at the time who despised cats and were horrified to have one in the house. They were constantly giving us a hard time about the kitten and threatening to have him evicted.
More about Oscar in Part 2, coming soon....