|Birth: ||Dec. 1, 1994|
|Death: ||Aug. 15, 2005|
"When I'm discouraged, he's empathy incarnate, purring and rubbing to telegraph his dismay." ~ Cathryn Jakobson Ramin, American journalist, magazine contributor, and author
My friends who'd known me for years and years were beginning to call me the "Cat Woman," my neighbors were rolling their eyes with each new cat while my wonderful vet was loving it and my family still couldn't believe I had four cats after decades of being such a dog lover. As a single working mom to my four, the vet and food bills for them was enough for me to handle at the present count.
My boss gave me a call late Christmas Eve of 1994 as I was getting ready for Midnight Mass, telling about her sister just finding a kitten on her front porch minutes earlier. It was meowing pathetically and she felt she had to let it in. I understood the kitten appeared to be about eight weeks old and was seemingly healthy looking. She said her sister was going to look for its owner the day after Christmas since it obviously had been looked after.
By the end of the week after Christmas, the sister and family had tromped through the streets of the entire neighborhood and ventured into other neighboring areas with no luck in finding the kitten's home. It was pretty tough to think that someone would dump a little fellow on Christmas Eve, but I've long ago begun to believe that a select part of mankind is cruel and evil. Christmas Eve of 1994 was very cold. All of us who knew the kitten's story was glad the kitten had found a caring household to cry for entrance.
In the meantime, the sister fell for the kitten deciding she was going to keep him since she'd been unable to find out to whom he belonged. She had one happy-go-lucky dog and a crotchety sixteen year old cat who wasn't too fond of much in this life. Maybe, and sometimes that was debatable, the exception was the old cat's love for the dog. She'd more or less raised him, thinking he was her kitten when he was a puppy. The entire family loved the little kitten, but Ole Bear, as the cat was called, refused to make friends with the little one.
One evening after the first of the year, my boss called to beg me to take the kitten. Life was miserable for Ole Bear. She was crying frequently, hiding and refusing to eat. The sister could no longer take the headache and hassle as badly as she hated to give up the kitten. For Bear's sake, she had to find a new home for him.
Oh what to do, what to do??? I didn't really want a fifth cat, but maybe I could provide a foster home until ... who was I kidding? I knew in my heart of hearts I was going to have a fifth one - no matter what. I told her to have her sister drop the kitten off at work the following day about fifteen minutes before I would be leaving.
Oh what an adorable little male kitten! He was just too cute! He was a black and golden brown tabby with beautiful whorls on his flanks and large almond shaped honey colored eyes. He was so friendly. As I was holding him, he reached up and put his arms around my neck. My heart all but melted. All my coworkers knew for a fact I was already hooked by this little fellow. And I was. I didn't even bother going to the house. Just simply drove straight to the vet.
I named him Lucky Jax, for at the time, I was the vault auditor at a gaming company. One of the two locations I worked at was Lucky Jack's.
When Dr Steve examined him, he told me the kitten would grow to be a big, big boy. I noticed for the first time his feet; they were bigger than KC's, the largest cat I had waiting at home. We gave him the birth date of December 1st.
During the examination, I told Lucky's story. Dr Steve disagreed with the eight week guesstimate for his age. He believed Lucky was probably just shy of six weeks old and that someone had to have left him on the doorstep. Not one flea was found on him nor did he have any type of intestinal parasite. Every little kitten I'd dragged home had been infested with both. He had been taken care of, though with his little round belly, he'd probably been fed table scraps rather than a good kitten kibble. He was a perfect picture of health with his shiny coat, pink gums and bright, clear eyes.
When I arrived home with the newcomer that evening, everyone except Cudz (of course!) immediately checked him out. Dani and Spook sniffed him all over, turned around, walked off and observed him from the sidelines. Cudz peered around the corner at him and when he spied her and bounded over to greet her, she shot under the bed like greased lightning. He momentarily appeared stunned that she refused his friendship, coming to a dead stop starring in the direction Cudz had gone until he noticed KC had ambled over.
It was one heck of an introduction to each other with many feline rituals taking place. KC repeatedly circled him, finally moved in to touch noses. Lucky, obviously remembering the recent snubbing from Cudz, sat back on his haunches and only watched KC. Suddenly the little kitten, still on his haunches, raised both front paws and encircled KC's neck in what I was taking as a very friendly and loving gesture. But by KC's reaction, I thought for sure there was a going to be a cat fight and rushed to break it up; however, they ignored me and continued with their game. Round and round they wrestled on the floor, growling and batting at each other, then sitting back and looking at each other, only to start the ritual all over again. Finally, it registered with me that my KC had a playmate.
And how that kitten grew. Every week he was noticeably larger and sleeker. By the time he was neutered, he was the size of long and lean Cuddles. When he was ten months old, he surpassed twelve year old KC in weight and height.
Christmas came once again. This time the Kiddens and I were in the big middle of packing and moving from the only place the girls and Lucky had known as home. We were waiting for Craig to arrive on Christmas Day to move us to Pennsylvania. Somehow we all survived the move and arrived in the Northeast tired and thankful to come to the end of our travels.
It was also time for Lucky's yearly checkup. Because of the Blizzard of ‘96, we (the Kiddens and I) were housebound because their Louisiana mom was terrified to drive in snow. On Valentine's Day, I figured I had to learn sooner or later in order to go to work the following month, so I packed him into the carrier and drove to the vet I would use briefly after arriving in Allentown. My little kitten was a little kitten no more. At fourteen months he weighed fourteen pounds. Craig fondly dubbed him "our little horse."
After moving to Palmerton we found another Dr Steve in the marvelous vet, Dr Edward A Shelly of Little Gap Animal Hospital, who weighed him on his second annual checkup at seventeen pounds. There wasn't an ounce of fat on Lucky. He was just one big Kidden.
We purchased a small home in Catasauqua where the Kiddens loved to streak up and down stairs, sitting in wide window sills watching squirrels and birds, and having access to a fenced backyard to enjoy supervised outdoor outings. We thought we'd be there until we retired.
Lucky turned four years old in December 1998, yet he still had many kitten antics. He and KC continued to have their wrestling matches up to the last days of little KC's life. He and KC on occasion stalked and terrorized the girls. Once KC left us, Lucky didn't have as much glee in tormenting the girls; he would occasionally hassle them, but it was truly a faint-hearted attempt.
There's not a single soul who can ever convince me that cats, or any other breathing creature, do not have emotions - I know they can and do feel pain, think, and experience depression and a sense of loss. The dreadful evening we brought KC home for the last time, Lucky and the girls went to KC's little plot in our backyard to investigate the new something that wasn't there earlier. Lucky checked every square inch of the grave, then lay beside KC's final resting place. Our hearts were breaking over the loss of KC, but watching Lucky grieve the following months was just as tough to bear. We had to forcibly bring him inside that night. Whenever Lucky went outdoors with us, oftentimes he would lay there peacefully, just gazing into space. We wondered just what he was thinking, how he felt without his best pal. Prior to our loss of KC, Lucky never spent any time in that area of the backyard, especially in the area where he lay beside KC.
A footnote regarding KC: When we sold our Catasauqua home and moved back to Louisiana in the fall of 1999 due to my mother's illness, it broke my heart to think of leaving KC behind in that cold Northern ground, without the family around who cherished him so. Dr Shelly suggested that, if we were willing to disinter him from his burial plot, we could bring him in for cremation the week before we left for Louisiana. And that we did - KC's ashes came with us - he returned home, back to the warm Louisiana weather he loved so much.
Laid back and loving, our Lucky-Bucky was a special, special cat. Extremely healthy all his life, ironically we lost him to an ear infection that failed to heal mid-August of the year he would turn eleven. I miss those funny, crazed antics of his and that deep, rumbling purr. ❤
As time goes by I won't forget,
That you were my beloved pet.
You made me happy when I was sad
And just for that I'm very glad.
God took you to His home in the sky.
I miss you, Son, but please don't cry.
Although my heart is broken in two,
One day I'll come and be with you.
I don't know when, but when I do,
I will come and cuddle you.
I think about you every day.
My heart will never feel the same way.
Until we meet again some day,
Together forever and never apart,
You'll be forever in my heart.
~ Author Unknown ~
FancyBoy Stallings Dog (1973 - 1983)
JoJo Stallings Dog (1967 - 1983)*
Cuddles Stallings Bachman Cat (1984 - 2000)*
Kaitong Chang Stallings Bachman Cat (1984 - 1998)*
Danielle Stallings Bachman Cat (1985 - 2005)*
Spook Stallings Bachman Cat (1987 - 2000)*
Missy Hedge Cat (1991 - 2003)*
Sylvester Bachman Cat (1992 - 2008)*
Samson Bachman Cat (1992 - 2002)*
Autumn Bachman Stallings Cat (1994 - 2009)*
Lucky Jax Stallings Bachman Cat (1994 - 2005)
Goblin Bachman Cat (1995 - 2009)*
JacquiLee Bachman Cat (1995 - 2002)*
Tigger Bachman Cat (1997 - 2005)*
Midnight Bachman Cat (1998 - 2009)*
RedBoy Bachman Cat (1999 - 2000)*
Penny Bachman Dog (1999 - 2011)*
Smut Bachman Cat (2000 - 2001)*
Breeze Bachman Cat (2000 - 2011)*
Spic Bachman Cat (2000 - 2012)*
Susie The Cat (2000 - 2002)*
Princess Bachman Dog (2000 - 2008)*
Puglena Bachman Dog (2001 - 2014)*
Rebel Bachman Cat (2004 - 2004)*
Skeeter Bachman Cat (2004 - 2004)*
Cheerio Bachman Cat (2005 - 2014)*
Sputnik Bachman Cat (2006 - 2015)*
Li'l Craigster The Squirrel (2013 - 2013)*
Specifically: Buried in his favorite flower bed in our back yard.
Created by: sniksnak
Record added: Jul 14, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 93602916
Added: Aug. 24, 2016
Becca, Boo, Peanut, Murphy & Bonzo
Added: Aug. 18, 2016
Added: Aug. 16, 2016
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