Life on the farm is real life.
And with it comes ups and downs.
Luckily, the ups outweigh the downs...
by a mile....
maybe by a hundred miles.
But still, an occasional day comes along where we suffer a loss.
We shed tears.
We wonder if there was something more we could have done.
Christmas evening delivered a sad loss to us.
We lost our little Leo.
Our Leo the Lionhearted...
who arrived at our barn a few short years ago
as a scrawny kitten.
It was his picky tastes that determined what flavor would be served each day...
As a tiny kitten, he was quite adventurous.
As he grew, however, he seemed to prefer the barn over adventuring.
Most of his day was spent in and out of the hayloft,
and only occasionally out of the barn.
He preferred the cushy life...
keeping himself as spotlessly groomed as a house kitty.
Last week, he stopped showing up for meals.
We searched the barn to no avail.
Then on Christmas evening I found him in the feed room (an open stall with easy access)
huddled in the corner in obvious respiratory distress.
Dr. Becky came quickly and tried a few medications,
but none seemed to ease his distress.
Unable to watch our sweet kitty suffer like that,
we decided to euthanize him.
His lungs had filled with fluid, making it impossible for him to breathe.
The whys and hows of this condition are a mystery.
We have no idea what precipitated this little fellow's misery.
Through tearful eyes, we said our last goodbyes
and kept our hands upon him as he took his last labored breaths.
Goodbye little Leo... out time with you was way too short....
sweet, but short.
And now, as we go about our errands and drive through the countryside,
we keep our eyes open for "Free Kitten" signs.
With only two kitties left in our barn, it seems a bit empty.
There's room for more.... there...
and in our hearts.