When I was thinking of the title, it was like I had an angel and a devil on my shoulder. The devil side of me really, REALLY wanted to go with another word that’s used for a cat because I’m in that kind of mood but the angel won. Damn!
Not only is it my daughter’s 2nd BIRTHDAY!! in April, our cat is turning 15 around that time. My husband and I got our sweet little kitty about a year after we were married. I never reveal names on my blog but since I don’t feel like saying “my kitty”
not my, ahem, kitty. my actually kitty that’s furry and purrs… oh never mind throughout the rest of the post I’ll just tell you her name. It’s Zira. Like Vera but with a Z.
I was obsessed with the movie Planet of the Apes, the original, when we got her and the ape that helped Charlton Heston was Dr. Zira. I loved the name for a pet so there you go. I decided to drop the “Dr.” part of the name because obviously cats can’t be doctors but apes totally can. Wait, What?
On Friday a repairman came to fix a few things. We live in military housing and we’re able to just call the management office if something isn’t working which is a good thing because our wonky dishwasher decided to work perfectly while the guy was here. When the repairman came, I went into our office and just let him do his thing. I was tweeting about how annoyed I was because the little hummingbird was taking a rare nap and this guy came not long after she fell asleep and was making a lot of noise.
Later that night my husband and I were watching a movie and we heard our cat meowing. We called for her and I remember looking at the clock, seeing it was about 9 pm. Looking back, we’re pretty sure she was outside and by a living room window but at the time we just assumed she was in the house upstairs.
A little bit later we thought it was strange that Zira wasn’t around. For years her ritual has been laying with us on the bed at night. We looked around the house and couldn’t find her so we figured she’s probably still hiding because the repairman scared her. She’s very skittish around strangers.
On Saturday morning I woke up to my husband opening up closet doors and looking under the bed. We were still thinking that she went to hide somewhere the day before but since she still wasn’t out of hiding, we thought she was possibly stuck. By that afternoon we knew she most likely slipped out the front door when the repairman was going in and out.
My husband lets her go in the backyard every now and then since it’s gated but she’ll occasionally try to run out of the front door if we’re not careful. She has a microchip and I’ve called the company to let them know she’s missing but I just don’t know what the odds are that we’ll find her or that she’ll come back home.
My hubby and I have been sick with worry and I can tell he’s taking this a lot harder than I thought he would. Zira was our baby long before we had the hummingbird. Zira came to my rescue during the several years that my husband would be deployed. She kept me company and would cuddle up with me at night when the worry I had for my husband’s safety would be at its worst.
When my daughter was in the NICU and I was an emotional wreck, it was like our cat knew what was going on. She would lay not far from me while I cried, longing to have my daughter home with me, and then she would come up to me as if to give me a snuggle, then go back to her place on the floor. It seemed like her way of telling me that she was there if I needed her.
After we were finally able to bring the little hummingbird home from the NICU, our cat wasn’t quite sure what to make of this little person. Then when my daughter started crawling and made her presence known, Zira would be so patient with the hummingbird while she would pull on the cat or use her as a teether.
Recently the little girl has been understanding that she needs to be gentle with the kitty and even gives her kisses. Just last week she started saying kitty, in her own garbled toddler speak, and one particular morning she put on her kitty ears headband and ran around the house saying mew, mew. It melted my heart.
On Saturday morning the little girl even helped us look for Zira by yelling out “kitty!” and holding the flashlight while we looked in drawers, closets, and cabinets. Of course she would easily get distracted and run off to find trouble.
As of now we’ve done everything we can think of. Talking to neighbors, putting up flyers, calling the local ASPCA, etc. My husband has been going outside several times during the day and at night, calling for her and walking around the neighborhood. We live near a woodsy area so we don’t know if she’s gone into the woods or is possibly hiding out by a neighbor’s house.
I just hate knowing that she’s out there in the cold and without food. It has also been hard for my husband and I to act like everything is okay in front of our daughter since Zira has been such a huge part of our lives. So now we wait…..
*UPDATE. Our sweet kitty is still missing and I’m afraid it’s not looking good….