Happy birthday, Yukimo! I've been thinking that over and over now for the past few days. I know that the "anniversary" of Yukimo joining my little family is coming up in early November, but then I started realizing that her actual birthday has probably already happened. After all, she was already a few weeks old when I bought her last year.
I don't think I've ever shared the small story of how Yuki came to be in my family, so I thought it would be appropriate to share it on her first birthday. *snuggles Yukimo*
This time last year was a bit rough for me as far as friendships go. Beth and I had always been close, but she had recently fallen into a complicated relationship with a guy. The relationship between the two dramatically hurt what Beth and I had, so the only real person I could turn to was Shawn. One of the ways he helped me was supporting my decision to get a hamster. Since my apartment (at the time) didn't allow cats, I thought a hamster would be the friend I really needed when Beth wasn't around.
One cold night last November, Shawn and I drove back to a pet store near his house. (We wanted to go to a place with a wide selection of hamsters to choose from.) I had made sure to clean my entire apartment, including the table where the new hammy's cage would go, before we left. I had hamsters when I was little and remembered how sensitive they were to germs and small spaces. I wanted to make sure my new hammy would be completely healthy and comfortable in her new home.
Shawn and I spent quite a while in the "rodent room" looking at all the hamsters. I started off browsing the regular-sized hamsters. I hadn't planned on considering a dwarf hamster. Shawn, however, was already a little freaked out by the size of hamsters but for some reason wanted me to consider getting a dwarf instead. I figured that since Shawn and I had decided on getting a hamster together, I would make sure that he was as equally happy with our sweetie as I was.
I went over to the two or three cages with the dwarf hammies and found two that I was drawn to. I was either going to get a grey and white boy or an all white girl. Ironically enough, I found that I wanted to get the all white girl, even though I told Shawn that I didn't want a hammy that was all white right before we went into the pet store. I never really liked all white rodents for some reason. This hamster was different though, so I had the pet store employee come over and "wrap her up" for me to take home!
The thing about dwarf hamsters is that their life spans are short; they usually only live to be one to one and a half years old. My goal for my hamster was for her to live to be at least one year old. I wanted to prove to myself that I could take care of a pet on my own (with a little help from Shawn) and help her live a happy life. Now that Yukimo is a year old, I really feel like I've helped make her time with me special. After all, Yukimo is special to me in so many ways. And even though I've fulfilled my dream of having a cat (or two), I still find that Yuki and I share a strong connection. At times, I've even put Yukimo's health and happiness before my own. (An example of this would be keeping my apartment's temperature at 60 degrees while Beth and I freeze. Yuki absolutely loves the cold air!)
I really wanted to share Yukimo with the rest of the world. She's affected my life in so many ways... So here she is, at age one, exploring the vast world in front of her. I have to admit-- she has never looked so fluffy, white and happy before, tee hee. She even starts wiggling around at one point. o___O (I narrate during most of the video by giving tidbits of information about Yuki.)