I’m not sure anyone really knows how old Marley is. My brother can pull a year out of the air, but he never seems quite sure he knows the right year. The vet has an estimate based on her mouth, but she emphasized that it’s only an estimate. I only know when she came to me.
Marley has had an interesting life. My brother, I think, got her as a kitten. Then when I was I college, he handed her off to me. When I went to the Peace Corps, she moved in with a friend of mine for a year, and then with my parents for the second year. With the friend, she lived with I think 5 other cats. With my parents, she lived with two dogs. After I moved out of my parents’ house after Peace Corps, Marley came with me and she was an only cat for a time. Then last year, we moved in with Ellie and Tilly and now Marley will live out her years with Tilly.
Marley hasn’t always been in good health, but she’s made it through it all. There have been two big scares in recent years. Nearly all of her teeth rotted out and she had to have them removed. She got very thin because she couldn’t eat leading up to that. With the teeth gone, she ate again. Then, she started puking multiple times a day and she got thin again. The vet said she had inflamed bowels. So now she’s on a pill for life, but it keeps the food down and she’s plump again.
For me, Marley is more than a cat. She’s a friend who has been through a lot with me. She comfortable me when I’m down and I comfort her. She knows when I need her and she’ll give me some extra attention. It’s such a complex relationship that I have with a cat, it’s hard to explain and it feels weird to say, she just gets me.