This has been a hard for year for us and our kitties so far. We lost sweet Charlene on Friday morning. We all could feel she had only a few hours left when we loved on her late Thursday night. GR took her to bed with her, and when she woke up at five, she could tell that Charlene was gone. I was awake and in the living room shortly after that and saw the two of them snuggled together on the recliner. GR had been calling Charlene her bro, and so SR gave her Barney Stinson's Bro code on GR's birthday . GR had read the first half of the book to Charlene that day, and on Friday morning she read her the second half. It touched my mother-heart, and not only did I cry for Charlene, but I cried for the loss my children would have. In a few minutes I woke up SR and JK, and we all said our last good-byes to her. G was already at work.
Charlene and a large male cat that G and I called her brother showed up on our lawn about seventeen years ago and never left. We named her brother Chuck, and he was definitely her protector. She has always been docile and timid, and so they were the perfect pair. We used to have an orange tabby that we had tamed from being feral, and we thought their resemblances were enough that they could have been his offspring. They were inside and outside at first, but G (and GR) are allergic to cats, so eventually they became outside-only cats. One day Chuck was under one of our bushes, dead, and we have no idea why, but poisoning came to mind. Shortly after that, Sparkly showed up, and the ladies grew old together. Whereas Sparkly never liked the indoors, Charlene was most grateful a few years ago, when she was brought back inside permanently. G and GR are still allergic, but everyone could see that she loved being indoors. (Now, G has completely given up, and so Cleopatra and Dennis are luxuriating indoors.) She adjusted quickly to the dogs and quickly became litter-box trained. She would pick a favorite spot and not move from it for months, except for necessities. Then, she would find a new spot. Lately, it's been in GR's and JK's room. She is buried next to Sparkly in our garden; JK added a toy, like he did with Sparkly, and GR put in a copy of the Bro Code's cover. SR commented to me yesterday that all her childhood pets, the ones that she had when she was little, are all gone now. I thought of that too, and it saddened both of us. We humans are sure lucky when we have such wonderful non-human companions. See below for some of the pictures taken of Charlene this year.