Lancelot finally told us it was time, so we took him in this afternoon. I held him the whole time, and he just hugged me or stayed close.. He'd been having so many problems.... I'm having a really hard time with it all, right now. But I can't do any of that justice here, so I'm just... not going to try. But I thought I should let you know.
And I want you to know how wonderful a cat he was. I can't find words enough for that, either, but I have to try. There will never be anyone like Lancelot again. I only got to know him for the last three and a half years of his fifteen, but I love him very, very much. He was so deeply wonderful, and loving, and bright, and sweet. Lancelot the brave, the loyal! And for the last few days we were closer again than we'd been in a long time, since just about the beginning, and it was very special. I'm very grateful for it.
I miss him so much, already. I kind of can't believe it. I was there, but it's not... real, somehow.
He was so soft. He had wonderful red fur, and a strange tip to his tail, where one of the bones at the end was misshapen, and soft, soft paws he didn't want anyone to touch, and bright, huge eyes, and perky whiskers, and he was beautiful. And he was so sweet, when he wasn't being a total grump, and loved new people, and was friendly. He got me through the few weekends Chris had to be away, and I got him through them, too. He loved fellow redheads (lucky me!) but hated classical soprano singing ( =the source of a lot of our problems). But he didn't mind me singing "Old Deuteronomy" in my deepest voice while holding him (he didn't like being picked up, either, but that was okay).
He loved cheezits, and tried to steal them, even though they tended to make him sick.
He was pretty pukey all his life, to tell the truth. Nobody could figure out why.
He had a wonderful motorboat purr. He would trill his meows, by kind of purring through them? Like "Prrrow? Brr, brr, BrrrrAWow." Sometimes if he was trotting down the stairs, he'd make a little "Prrt, prrt, prrt" when he hit the steps. Especially if he was excited. He'd trot or stand with his tail straight up and bushy--fluffy, fluffy tail--and just trill. It is the sweetest meow you've ever heard.
He didn't like the song we wrote him, but we did.
A lot of nights, especially in the last handful of months when he hadn't been feeling as well, we'd all sleep like this: <<< Chris behind me, Lance curled up by my stomach. I never had the heart to move him if I needed to move the covers or anything. He also liked sleeping up on my hip, or up on my butt if I was on my stomach.
There's a lot more to say. I just don't know quite what all at the moment. But Lancelot had more nicknames than we could count, and I'm going to try to catalog as many of them as I can. He tended to respond--I don't think he knew them all (how could he?) but he knew us and he knew when we were talking to him. You'll see some themes--they were all said with love (even the ones you're not sure about).
Lancelot, Lance-without-pants, Lance with No Pants On, Lancelot-sans-culottes, Lance-apot, Lance-apotamus, Him, Bunky, Himapot, Bunkerpot, Bunkertot, Stinky, Stinker, Shtinker, Shtinky, Shtinkertot, Shtinkertoy, Bunkertoy, Bunkyboy, Lance-a-bunk, Lance-a-maphone, Bunk, The Bunk, The Boy, Our Bunky Boy, Our Bunky Baby, Hey My Baby, Bunker, Mr. Him, Mr. Bunk, the butt-cat, Mr. Stink, Mr. Butt, Shpoongy, Spunky, Shpunky, Spunky Winnebago, Nummy-Muffin-Cocoa-Butter, Butterscotch Pudding, Circus Peanut, the puppy-cat, My Whumpa, Whumpum, Bumpa, Stinkum, Stinkus, Wumba, motorboat, Lancey, Sir Lancelot, Sir Pukesalot, Sir Bunksalot, Punk, Punky, Punker, Binky, Monkey, Minky.
And there are some I'm forgetting. And there were some that rose and fell in moments.
But this is why his song says "and hold and love and cry out, all my names--many names" because we did.
Edit: Link to the wonderful entry about Lance that Chris wrote a couple days ago, about his younger life.