Mister Man came into this world under violent circumstances. Almost 14 years ago or so he, along with his siblings, were put in a pillowcase and dumped into a snow bank. Miraculously, the kittens were spotted and brought to the Watauga Humane Society. Mister Man, dubbed 'Stormy' by the kind shelter volunteers, was massaged back to life. His siblings were not as fortunate. He lost about 3 inches of his tail due to frost bite but I don't think he ever missed it. In fact, Ialways got the feeling he was more grateful to us for saving him from a life within the confines of the shelter's cat room.
Monsieur Man was an outdoor sort of fella...forever on the hunt of the errant chipmunk. His scars included a notched ear, missing teeth, and more the loss of a handful of his nine lives. He was happiest posing on his favorite rock, nesting in my lap or curled up tight against Harley.
He was a lover and a fighter. But this afternoon he lost his final battle while embraced by our love. My little buddy had an advanced stage of lymphoma in his chest. A pitiful amount of fluid was drained from his chest while a tumor took up the rest of the space. Every breath was a struggle. We made the family decision to not prolong Mister Man's agony.
As we pet and cooed and cried our good-byes to Mister Man, my eldest sobbed, shrugged her shoulders and asked, "Didn't we just go through this with Harley?"
Yes. We did. It was a hard weekend and a suckity-doo-da day but as I sit here writing this post tonight, I have to believe that somehow, Mister Man is just a wee bit happier tonight snuggling up to Harley...just like back in the day.