March 19, 1998 - January 3, 2000
Kincaid became part of our lives in May of 1998.From that day forward life was to never be the same. That tiny little body that my husband referred to lovingly as an "alien" was warm and downy, full of life and wonder, and immediately accepting of all the love that could be showered upon her. And up to and since the day she died the love given freely to her has never ceased.
She blossomed into a beautifulyoung lady.The typicalcharacteristics of an African Grey seemed to have missed her and shereadily accepted attention from any member of the family although shewould always eagerly abandon anyone for "Mom" (myself).
Kincaid learned to bark rightalongside the four dogs in the house. She learned to trick the cook in the kitchen by making themicrowave beep that it was done, when it was not. Her most special words uttered anytime she laid eyes on me were,"Fill my love tank". "BigGirl. Big Girl" she would say loudly and flap her wings as if shewere ready to take off into the sky.
Kincaid seemed to grow normally but her color was a deep grey with red throughout her chest and closer to two years of age the red extended up her back. She was one of a kind and we loved her. I never had any indication that anything was wrong with her.She was vibrant, healthy, and talked nonstop.
In July of 99 our family relocated from Birmingham, AL to Toronto Canada.We made the crosscountry trip with 4 dogs, 100 finches, a lovebird, mousebird and of course Kincaid.Iwas worried how she would react to all the change, but neednt have. Sheadjusted to life in Canada immediately.
Inlate fall 99 I noticed that Kincaid did not speak quite as often.When she did talk her voice sounded hoarse. Iwas not alarmed since she had good weight, was active, eating well and hadnormal droppings.I chalkedit up to her working on mimicking yet another voice in the household.Afterall, she was extremely clever at calling me into the livingroom "Mommy. Mommy. Where are you?" in my five year old son's voice.
In late December I noticed apronouced snoring sound in her breathing.Although, initially it seemed as if she would begin the snoring togain the attention of any occupants in the next room.Upon entering the room the sound would cease.I had remembered reading about greys using devious tactics tosecure your undivided attention and again did not think anything waswrong.
On Monday January 3rdI raced to the avian vet that had finally opened from the holiday. I had my five year old son in tow. Had I known that Kincaid would die in my arms that morning Iwould never had taken my son along.Thelesson of learning about life and death seemed far too cruel for a childto learn at such a young age.
While holding Kincaid in my arms the vet attempted to examine the lump in her chest that I KNEW was related to her current condition. Kincaid went limp in my arms. I remember the vet racing out of the room with Kincaid in her hands. I remember watching through the window as they attempted to resussitate her.I remember thinking "Please let her body move. Oh God, let me see her move." She never did.I will never forget holding her lifeless body in my arms, sobbing uncontrollably and watching the tears stream down my young son's face.
Post mortem results concludedthat Kincaid died of advanced stage cancer.The small lump in her lower chest was only a small percentage ofthe cancerous tumor within her.Thetumor originated on her sternum bone, and had through the coarse of herfar too short life completely encased her heart and had finally spreadinto her lungs.Kincaid hasbeen cremated and will return to the US with us at some point this year.I could not leave her behind.
After coming across Sibylle'ssite and viewing the other memorials graciously posted there I knew thatwriting one for Kincaid would take just a small portion of the pain away. And it has. AndI thank you Sibylle for allowing me the opportunity to celebrate Kincaid'slife and the joy that she brought in sharing it with us.
Don't worry Mommy, Kincaid isflying over us right now in Heaven checking on us", my son said.Remarkable words from such a little person.