She liked to lick bare toes, although not mine.
She chirped instead of meowed, just like a bird.
She took six years to accept me.
What did acceptance look like?
Jumping on my lap when I sat on the toilet, allowing me to scratch under her chin.
She’s gone now.
“It’s likely cancer,” the veterinarian said, setting our swaddled Thea on the table.
Hunched and heavy-eyed, a mournful yowl that sounded like yow-ow-ow.
There’s no more toe licking. Or bathroom scritches.
But I hear the birds chirping and think of her.