When I tell my friends that I now have three cats, they all want to know why I decided to get a third cat when I've had two cats for over 13 years. I say, "It's a really long story. My new cat is famous."
"Uh huh, " they all say. "Yeah, right."
So I have to tell the story. I start with Jasmine's illness three years ago, and then launch into the story of how I discovered Malcolm and little No Name Yet from Max's blog. I tell them how I read the blog, and contributed. They all say, "Wow, what an amazing story!" But it isn't over. No Name Yet got a new name, Millie. Millie needed a home, and ultimately I decided to adopt her.
I have read some snarky comments about "the cat who got hit by the car and was rescued by a guy who couldn't afford her vet bill..." but obviously this person didn't read the story. To me the best part of this story is that a community of cat lovers rescued a female feral cat. Millie is one cat that won't be adding to the feral cat population. She is in a good home, where she will live a good life, and enrich the life of her owner.
Of course, the story continues. I had to start a blog so Millie's wonderful extended family could follow her adventures. I'm a fairly private person, and I don't buy into the idea of keeping a personal journal out in public where anybody can read it. And to blog as a cat? That idea just struck me as so ... juvenile. But Malcolm had expressed hope that I would start a blog for her, so I emailed Max's mom for advice. "Stay true to her voice..." was the excellent and most helpful reply.
When my friends actually look at the blog, they all express amazement. "I can't believe how many comments... omigod, your cat really IS famous."
You are all part of this wonderful story, and I am profoundly grateful. Millie is too, I am quite sure.
Let's celebrate all the Formerly Ferals who've overcome many obstacles and settled into a life of domesticity.
-- the Lady
update at 8:00 pm on Friday...
I did not anticipate what telling Millie's feral story would bring. It never occurred to me that other Formerly Ferals would tell their stories as well. As I read through them today, I was often brought to tears.
Certainly I have benefitted from the generosity of Millie's benefactors. But what amazes me each day is the outpouring of love and affection from people all over the country and the world. Millie has received gifts, and I have received tremendous support and many helpful suggestions in helping "domesticate" Millie from the cat blogging community. I have been thrilled to read comments from bloggers who say, "I read your blog every day, I look forward to it." And I feel I deep responsibility to do the right thing with Millie, and to keep her extended family "in the loop."
The comment from Anonymous this evening -- who recently adoped a Siamese cat from a horrific situation and thought of Millie and Gizzy when things got tough -- just takes my breath away. This cat is now learning to be a lap cat!
All I did was agree to adopt a cat and tell the story of her life.
It just reminds me that the most important thing we do in Life is to be good to each other. We often do not know how that can change the world.
I may have started out to tell one cat's story, but I find now that I continue because I truly enjoy being a part of this incredible community.