June 30, 2010
That was the name that my sister had given to this little 2 month old furball that just happened to end up underneath the stairs in our backyard on a December morning in 1993. Somehow, this little dynamo with the familiar tortoise colors of the highly recognizable Calico species managed to infiltrate our pet-free household.
It's funny how this little thing caught the interest of a family that included 3 people that were allergic to pet dander and 1 that despised felines with a passion.
(Ahem. That would of course be Yours Truly.)
Yet, there was something about Juniper. I can't describe it and I doubt that I ever will.
I remember Dad telling us not to feed it because it will never leave.
He told us that she could never come inside the house.
She made it through the back porch entrance.
Dad made it clear that Juniper was not allowed past the kitchen area.
Finally he said that Junie was not permitted into the living room or near the furniture.
No such luck. She was now part of our family. haha
I was converted from a Cat-Hater, my sister had become her protector, my Mom loved petting her even though she had allergies and my Dad may have shown more affection towards her than me or my sister! lol
For the next 16+ years we watched her grow and she was also witness to many events in our family: Graduations, Relationships, Cancer Scares and L.A. Lakers Championships (hehe) to name but a few.
She kept my sister company during late night study sessions, kept my feet warm on cold nights watching television and she always managed to trick my Mom into feeding her after she had already been fed! =)
Junie had a special bond with each member in this family, but as irony would have it she connected with the one person who didn't want her in the house in the first place.
Juniper and my Dad had become best friends. What I will never forget, other than the fact that she loved watching my Dad practice his putting in the living room, is that she would wait for him to come home from work every night by the screen door at 10pm on the dot without fail.
She was a fighter since birth but unfortunately, she did not have enough of that strength to fight on in her twilight years.
In 1993, she found us.
In 2010, we lost her.
Goodbye, Juniper, Junie, Joober, Joogie, Boogie and Baby...
We will miss you and you are forever loved.
"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened."