Ever since she looked up at me, staring straight into my eyes, meowing with as much enthusiasm as all the other adoptable kittens around her, Russ and I have shared a special bond. We learned about the world around us together, played together and moved to Florida together.
She would hiss, growl and run away from visitors. Who can blame her for speaking her mind? If only I could tell people what I really think of them; she really had the advantage. When no one else was around, Russ was the sweetest cat you could be lucky to have as a companion. Other people grew-up with brothers and sisters. I grew-up with Russ.
It was foremost in my mind that moving to Tallahassee would mean moving away from my closest friend, but it would have been wrong to relocate her away from her home. Just as soon as I was settled-in here and Mom and Ross set out on their trek around the country, Russ came and lived with me. Those two months were the best. It was like old times again.
Russ was diagnosed with kidney disease a while back and we were able to keep her comfortable with antibiotics, pain medication and special food that would accommodate her delicate digestive system. We knew that it was only a matter of time before her kidneys simply stopped working. But she fought it and fought it well for quite some time.
I hope she knows that I would have done anything to have been with her today. Anything. I hope she forgives me for not coming down to visit more often. And today, I hope she remembered all of the good times we had together. I will never forget.
I love you, Russ. And I miss you.