Minkey’s Gone to Heaven

It’s taken me a long time to write this. Minkey died at age 17 on September 21st, 2012.

I was unavoidably away from home at the time. My little chocolate Siameasle had cancer, and I decided not to have him euthanized because he was still very happy and cuddly and talkative. I was living with my son at the time; the only person Minkey ever really loved, besides me. My son used to hold him up to my apartment pegboard ceiling when he was a kitten to see if the ceiling “spots” were bugs, so he was special to Minkey ever afterwards.

And when we moved in with my son in 2010, he was very kind to Minkey — who actually used to cuddle with him.

I was away from home but did not realize there would be no cell phone coverage in the place I was staying. As I left the next morning, I got a text from my granddaughter telling me that Minkey had died at midnight.

I called my son and found out that Minkey had become disoriented and unable to walk some hours earlier. My son couldn’t find a vet that was open or that would return his call, so he nursed Minkey on his chest, wrapped in a towel. He soothed and petted Minkey, speaking to him gently and calling him all his favorite names. And at midnight, his little buddy “Minkey-kins” slipped away.

My son and his children made him the most beautiful grave in the garden. My oldest granddaughter dug a flower bed on top of it and planted herbs and perennials. My son placed an ornamental garden bench there so I could sit with Minkey when I visit (I now live over 1,000 miles away from my family). And my youngest granddaughter painted a headstone.

I am very grateful to them for making Minkey’s last hours as comforting as possible, as well as making such a lovely garden.

But my heart will always be broken that I was not with him when he died. After seventeen years, my little Minkey-mings deserved that.