Sox - My guiding light through the stormy years

Sox came to us in March 2004 as the family were moving and could only take two of their four cats with them.
We were told "both young boys" were in great health for 4yr olds, where as the two girls they were keeping were older and Special Needs. Ironically almost all of this information turned out to be inaccurate. Our vets estimated they were closer to 7/8yrs - Tigger was a girl and both too were Special Needs.(Find out more here) 
He passed to Rainbow Bridge 14th December 2012 aged aprx 16yrs.
Spending his remaining years with us brought him great comfort, through countless battles and threats of being PTS (from vets, not us!) he always bounded back to be by my side. In his final moments he was calm, content and relaxed in his home surrounded by his loved ones and companions.

Here's to the one who gave me courage, guided me through terrible trials and wiped my tears when I couldn't cope... My most beautiful soul and son.

Age : Sox was roughly 16 when he passed , would of been 17 had he made it to march 2013
Arrival: March 13th 2004

How he got here: He was a friends cat along with his sister , “partner” and daughter. Unfortunately the owner was moving and could only take two of the four cats with her to the new home. The “partner” and daughter were chosen as they couldnt be separated and the mumma cat was poorly. Sox and Tigger came to live with us to get me through rough times. They were “given as in good health” and until a few months after we didnt even know there may be medical problems …

Why he is with us:  He was brought here by myself and mum (Kathy) “as pets” to cheer me up , accompany me to get me through awful stuff. This was years before The Craft-E-Kittens came about.

Medical Issues: Over the course of the 9 years (seems so much longer) in my life , socky had many injuries and illnesses, i have tried to write a list of those i can remember – Ripped Paw , Pad restructure , Was hit by a car and left to fend for himself on the back roads near our house (after he finally recovered i refused to let him outside “free roaming” again and he was too scared to on the one occasion he slipped outside – he just froze in fear) , Renal Failure , Rhinotracheitis , Irritable Bowel Disease ,  Feline Herpes Virus (FHV-1) , Broken Legs with metal pins , Blind in one eye ,  Very suseptible to cold / heat / dust etc

Day to day attitude:

A bit snappy towards any one but me who tried to pick him up , very much disliked men (history) except Johnny who he took to very quickly (like, overnight), very loving , loved having tickles and headbumps , would often hop onto the sofa next to us  – and curl up for a snoozey hug or watch films / tv with us - except he had a pure hatred for Top Gear and would (honestly!) try to turn the channel over or turn the tv off with a flick of his paw.
Would not tolerate anyone but me touching his lower back , back ankles , paw pads and especially belly! . This would result in being kicked, bitten or smacked with a paw. he wasnt agressive – he just feared more pain (wouldnt you with all those illnesses and hurts?)

Abilities: Even in his later years , he was very smart , he could open things and reach things on tippytoe that shouldnt be possibly. He could talk but due to his throat problems (forgot to write that above!) and operations ,he was barely audible to anyone but me (mamma’s can always tell their childrens cry in a crowded area and all that). He used to be a “good”(bad boy!”) rabbit and bird hunter in the fields out the back of the house , but often came home with lumps and bumps as if the wildlife were chasing him rather than vise versa!

Special Needs: This section is too much to write currently (its taken me months to have the strength to write this far , please bear with me…… :[ ...) the "hurts" are too much right now

Coat description: short slinky shiny black coat with "tuxedo" white markings and white "socks"
(pure black paw pads too until he was hit by the car and the vets thought he could loose the foot / pad and all.
With my care it healed well , and skin grew back in just 2 weeks but in a pink tone forever to be known as "the pinkypaw" when tickling him and him purring like a loon at me.... )

Breed Detail: British Shorthair Tuxedo [and darn proud of it!]

Socky died in his safe place.... at home

After beary died in November 2011 we struggled as a "unit" in the cat cabin and it hit Sox the hardest. They were truly a bonded couple who had been entirely inseparable since Bear was adopted in 2006. 
He deteriorated rapidly due to his age, mental and physical state and the heartbreak that came from the reality that we had to literally bring the now "passed" Beary into the cabin once she'd been collected from the vets to show him she wasn't coming home again... not like we'd wanted. He had been going blind for some time but everything all at once just seemed to pile up on him and just over a year after Bear passed - Sox slipped into a coma at home, began having spasms and fits and at one point bit his blanket in his bed and wouldn't or couldn't let go of it.. We had seen enough of the vets to know that if he was rushed in there would be only one option for him and I fought the urge so badly to just rush him in anyway, but we'd had "words" (me and him) and he didn't want that. He was scared for Chewie to be alone (so were we... ) and scared to leave me but I just couldn't go against his wishes and take him away from home to be put to sleep... we held him for hours until he drifted off to sleep calmly and peacefully. In the morning we found Chewie curled up on him trying to keep him warm, thinking he was still with her... It completely shattered my heart. He died December 13th 2012 (well, early hours 14th) and was buried shortly after in our gardens beside his precious Beary. His legacy quite literally lives on in each and every other cat or kitten we adopt and care for... It never gets easier, it never will and I don't think it ever really should... the good times, the bad, the worries and the excitement - every thing happens for a  reason.