Saturday, March 19, 2016

Finnigan & Lavinia

My sweet boy Finnigan had to be put down this Friday. Possibly the saddest thing I've had to do in forever. I don't think I ever shared any of his pictures on the blog, so you'll be seeing them today! Along with a little history on the story that is Finn and Lavinia.

We found Lavinia on a Friday afternoon September 18th of last year. A little 4 day old calico kitten, with helpless little mews and adorably soft fur. I was supposed to be attending a baby shower that afternoon and when I got home from work my sister showed me what she had found in our yard and she immediately got me to take her to the store to get some kitten formula. She was adorable and so tiny, I quickly agreed and away we went. We then spent that night bottle feeding her (what baby shower?) and keeping her warm in a box.

Let me say, we have never had any real pets before. I've had my share of hamsters, fish, rabbits, and birds, but never an actual cat or dog, so this was very exciting for us! My mom was not too keen on us keeping a cat, especially not indoors, and she convinced us to surrender her to the animal shelter before we accidentally killed the kitten (since we obviously didn't know what we were doing). I agreed and on Saturday morning we took her to the shelter, where they asked for my license and didn't even take a look at the poor thing in her box! I immediately thought that if it was too much of a hassle for them, they would probably let her die and they wouldn't care too much; but if we took her home with us, we could try and help her, and if she died with us, at least someone would mourn her! So back home she went. Much to our joy, and my mom's displeasure.

While we were on the porch telling our mom the new and improved plan and just how responsible we were, our neighbor came out and found another kitten under his car tire! I told him we had just found his sister the night before and he plunked it down in the same box...and suddenly we had two kittens! This was definitely a good thing, because I don't think Lavinia would have made it all alone without any other cats to interact with. Finnigan had one eye half opened when we got him and he was oh so adorably cute with his gray fluffy fur! A perfect little pirate cat. Finnigan was the smaller, weaker looking kitty, and I was not very sure he would make it. We established that Lavinia was Evelin's, and Finnigan was by default mine (even though I still had to pay for everything...). Every morning I awoke, I was surprised they were still alive and still doing okay! They started playing in their box, and walking around with their stumpy stiff tails, eating wet food, and learning how to use the litterbox.

 I could not have taken care of these kittens without massive amounts of googling and youtube videos, as well as my sisters daily prayers! (we really actually prayed for them) We learned how to feed them, clean them, help keep them warm, and what developmental stages they were in as they grew each day. Every step of progress was a cause of celebration in our home, and the short evenings were filled with kitten cuddles and family laughter at their antics. Instead of hiding out in our rooms for the evening on our phones, we would all gather in the living room for a while and play with the cats. Seems funny to say, but our family is closer because of them. We all have something we agree on that is cute, and funny to talk about. Fast forward to last week, and both kittens had been fixed, gotten their shots, and growing into entertaining little fur balls who can't get enough pats and laps to sit on, and loved venturing outdoors.

Finnigan had to be put down on Friday March 18th. One day before his 6-month-aversary with us. He needed a surgery that was very expensive, and was obviously in a lot of pain. His last two days were heartbreaking to watch, and we decided that it was for the best. I don't have any children, but that is the closest thing I have ever had to one, and it was a very hard thing to do. I'm sure I'll sound silly, but that's okay. Now watching Lavinia alone is very disheartening, the first two days she kept calling out to him, and looking for him outside. We are giving her many treats, extra attention, and all the loving she could need. I think it's important to love, and yes, pain may result because of it, but usually there are good things that come from it, and lessons learned. The good parts are the in-between parts, the times shared together.