Though I don’t quite know the exact day Luna was born, I know it was some time in late August of 1999. This means a cat I adopted shortly after I graduated from college is now 21 years old.
When I stop to think about it, that’s a staggeringly long time. Up until now, the oldest cat I’d ever seen was my grandma’s cat Boo-Boo, a beautiful Russian Blue she found playing in one of her wood piles one day. I fondly recall her sleeping in my lap when I visited, mainly because I was too tired to play because it was before my heart surgery.
She’s been through her own heart problems as well. Sometime in the last 7 or 8 years, she also developed some kind of seizure disorder. Each one makes me think it will be the end of her; how well can such an elderly animal survive repeated seizures, after all. But it only happens every few months, and she always recovers.
She still seeks me out and sleeps in my lap whenever she can. She still follows me to bed at night and curls up between my arms as I read before falling asleep. She still trusts me to take care of her.
Though she’s stiff, and she can’t quite walk right anymore, she’s still somehow able to get to the top of our large cat tree. She even jumps over Salem when he’s in the platform below her, when it’s time to come down. The age charts tell me she’s about 100 years old as a human equivalent, but it’s hard to believe. Show me a 100-year-old gymnast who can still do a balance-beam performance.
Yet I see her sleeping more than usual now. I’ve seen her grow weary walking across the house, laying down to rest in the front room in what looks like a fairly awkward position. I feel like I’ve said this several times in the past, but I think she’s finally starting to wind down. I’ll be sad to see her go when it’s finally time, but she’s had a long and fruitful life.
So here’s to Luna! Long may she reign!