#1 here. Who among us does not dread the time when we will have to write a post like this one? Sei-Chan left so quickly and unexpectedly. She became unwell on Friday, worsened on Saturday, was hospitalised on Sunday and left us on Monday. We are all still reeling. This post is going to be very long, so please bear with me.
The very first post which was titled SEIturday apeared on October 17, 2009. Sei-Chan was 9 months old and suddenly realised that she could have her very own day. She was such an extraordinarily happy and outgoing kitten, as you can see from the post. As she grew, she had the best friend anyone could have in Yuu-Chan. Just under a year later, Yuu-Chan died at 15 months and Sei-Chan never really recovered. From that time, she became shy and very reserved, and she remained that way for the rest of her life. People often came to visit and never saw my fourth cat. The other three would be all over my guests. Sei-Chan would sometimes put in an appearance and, very occasionally, she would fall in love with someone. She spent a lot of her time up in my study where she had three favourite spots to be. She was almost impossible to catch, except when she had decided it was snuggle time. Sometimes I would wake up and find her snuggled up against me in bed, under the covers. Other times, I would be sitting on the sofa and she would come and "do my hair" from behind.
Two years ago, at her annual check-up, she was diagnosed with early-stage renal disease. She was put on Semintra and renal food. There was an immediate improvement and her stats were almost normal a few months later. I was hopeful but it was very hard to medicate her. I would be able to syringe the Senintra into her mouth for a short while and then she would get wise and I just could no longer catch her. I then mixed it with her food, which was not ideal but seemed to work. Last November, she decided almost overnight that she did not like her renal food anymore. I switched her to ordinary high-end wet food to which I added the phosphorus binder, Ipakitine (Epakitin in North America). That worked well but it was much harder to make sure she ate her food and nobody else did. I fear that this is where things started to go wrong. Still, she seemed fine. She was even more social than before, often sitting in the living room or kitchen, instead of alone up in the study. At the end of last week, however, I noticed a decrease in appetite which very quickly turned into not eating at all. You know the rest. One more angel in the heavens.
It has been really hard to choose pictures for this post. First of all, I have so many, and she was so very photogenic. And it is so hard to sum up a life in a few photos. So, I have ended up choosing a few randomly. If you would like to learn more about her growing up, you can look at her last birthday post here.
Sei-Chan had a funny little face, a little different from the standard Aby but incredibly expressive, with beautiful green eyes. She had a tendency to scrunch up her eyes as her eyelids were very slightly turned inward, and I would help her clean her eyes as often as she would let me do it.
As most of you know, Sei-Chan moved to Poupounette Central, along with her Mama, Viña del Mar, when she was just 4 weeks old. Her mama stayed with her until she was three months old, and then returned to her breeder.
She was very laid back!
And had in Tama a great big sister to learn the ropes from!
And look after her!
Growing up, she loved to snuggle, first with me:
And then she discovered Tommy!
And there was her great love, Yuu-Chan:
That was a very special relationship and Sei-Chan never really got over Yuu's premature departure for the Bridge.
She also enjoyed hanging out with her sister, Tama:
She was extremely photogenic and her furs always glowed in the sun. I have taken so many portraits of her over the years. Here are just a few from the past few years.
Sei-Chan was also famous for her amazing pink pawpads, so here is a photo from her youth:
I could go on and on, but I need to stop somewhere, so I shall close the photo gallery with three stunning photos of her taken by my friend Hiroaki Ota, a professional photographer and great cat lover from Japan:
Just a couple more things to tell you before concluding this post. As I drove home the afternoon that Sei-Chan crossed the Bridge, I saw a rainbow just ahead of me:
Two days later, in the British countryside, there was another rainbow:
Sei-Chan let us know that she had arrived, and that she was reunited with Yuu-Chan.
I would like to say a very special thank you to those who made the beautiful badges for Sei-Chan, Ann Adamus and Ingrid, Pipo and Dalton:
Thank you also to all those who mentioned Sei-Chan in their posts, and who left such lovely comments both on the blog and on Facebook. The outpouring of love and support has helped a great deal.
And Sei-Chan brought me personally another gift as she left: My nephew, with whom I have been estranged for three years, read about her on Facebook and wrote to me.
Sei-Chan, you were such a shy little girl and you lived your life very much on your own terms, but you made a huge mark on all our lives and all our hearts ache not to see your beautiful sweet face among us anymore. We will never forget you.