Thursday, June 16, 2011

Goodbye to our boy...

Our boy, our Sidney.  I remember the day I brought him home...he was one of several kittens being given away. I'd seen in ad in the paper, called and arranged to pick one up in a few days.  I had my wisdom teeth removed and was recuperating at my parents' house.  Mom drove me to the house and the woman led me into the garage where there were were six or seven orange & white kittens scampering about. The little boy of the house had his heart set on keeping all of them...he pointed and said, "I want this one, and this one and this one...".  I asked him which I could have and he pointed to a kitten and said "that one".  I leaned over and picked up the softest, trembling ittybittykitty.  I held him to my chest and put him in a box with a blanket for the ride home to my apartment.  He was so scared, I'd just taken him from his mother and all of his brothers and sisters.  The next day, I was on the phone with my mom and we were discussing names.  At this point, I had no idea if the kitty was a he or a she.  So I was thinking of names that could go either way...Frankie, Charlie...then Mom suggested Sidney.  "If it's a boy, you can spell is Sidney and if it's a girl, it could be Sydney".   Well, a few days later at the vet, Sidney it was.

He was the best boy ever. He was so sweet and fluffy and wanted to play for hours. He kept me up at night trying to "catch" my fingers.  He'd fall asleep in the middle of wrestling with my hand.  He loved riding in the car to my mom & dad's...where they would babysit on a Saturday or Sunday while I worked.   When my parents moved to San Antonio, Sidney and I moved with them. We lived in a great big, very old two-story house. Sidney adored the hardwood floors, where balls of paper moved with lightning speed, as he chased them under the buffet in the dining room. He lived for racing down the stairs and talking to the birds outside the floor to ceiling windows.  One of his favorite toys was an old handkerchief that had belonged to my father, I had knotted it in a few places...and Sidney would carry it around in his mouth.  I could throw the handkerchief down the stairs and Sidney would run and get it. Then carry it back to me and ask me to do it again.  Sometimes he wanted to do this at 2am. He'd have it in his mouth and make this funny moaning sound that echoed in the large empty hallway.  A few nights of this and I'd have to "hide" his toy at night.

Sidney and I eventually moved back to Kansas, where we lived with my friend Brenda and her cat, Casper.  Sidney and Casper never became best friends, but they co-existed nicely after an adjustment period.  Eventually, I met John and John was a dog person and a little allergic to cats. But John and Sidney became friends.  When we got engaged and the lease ended on the home Brenda & I shared; I moved in with my parents for the two months before our wedding.  At this point, my parents had a dog and a cat of their own. So Sidney moved in with John, in the house we'd purchased that spring.  Something wonderful happened in those two months.  Sidney and John became the best of friends, they formed a bond like nothing I'd ever seen.  John became his Daddy and the two of them were quite the pair.  John could pick him up and hold him like a baby...and Sidney would let him do this forever. He would tilt his head and bump it against John's head, asking for kisses, and John would oblige and shower kisses upon Sidney's head.  And the naps they would take!  They could cuddle and nap for hours, especially if golf was on the tv.  I loved seeing them together like this.

We were a family.

Sidney loved living in Topeka the past 5 years. He loved escaping outside to eat some grass and discovering new places to nap. He loved seeing John everyday at lunch.  He loved sleeping in our bed during the day, tunneling his way under the covers.  He loved drinking from the faucet or from the shower floor.  And prowling the garage, lying on the cool concrete.  Getting the mail with Daddy and searching the wind for new and different scents.  On Sundays, he was all about hanging out on the sofa in the family room and watching movies, wanting only to lie near us...and if we moved and disturbed his slumber, he let us know.  "Sunday Sidney", we would call him.  We had songs for him, John and I would sing, alternating verses.  When we'd leave for a little vacation...we'd miss him so.  John would ask me, "what do you think Sidney is doing now?". Sometimes I would play along and tell him that Sidney was getting ready to watch some tv or he was messing with our dvr.  Other times, I would ask John, why was he trying to make me sad?  We'd come home and Sidney would purr and purr.  He'd walk into the dining room and roll onto the carpet, "Look how cute I am? Don't you want to pick me up and hug me?"  And we would. And we'd give him kisses upon the head, dozens of them.

In the past couple of years, Sidney started showing his age. He would've been 18 years old this summer. Each visit to the vet made me realize how precious our time together was. I would hold his little head and look into his eyes, trying to make sure my heart never forgot his face.  This last visit was the saddest, it was time to say goodbye.  Dr. Trupp and his staff were amazing.  They left us alone in the room for 20 minutes or so while we held Sidney and loved him.  When the time came, John held him in his arms and I stroked his head. He went peacefully and our hearts broke in two.

Sidney was one of the best things that ever happened to me. He changed me and made my heart grow in ways I didn't know were possible.  I know John feels the same way.  We all had each other and we were the luckiest.


  1. What a good memory of Sidney. Made me cry here at work with good memories. He was the best boy in the world! A good compliment to my blog located at ( We will always remember our Sidney!

  2. I'm so sorry to hear about your Sidney Carrie. It is so hard to lose our beloved pets as they quickly become such an important part of our family! I hope all your wonderful memories help ease the pain.