This letter from Mom to Keiko was written on Friday, February 11, 2011Keiko

Dear Keiko,

I miss you every single day, even though it's been two years this March. I still feel responsible for your escape and for my failure to ensure your return or to find you. You were a beautiful creature to me, the sweetest ferret, kind, gentle, loving and playful. I'm so sorry I didn't do enough (and quick enough) to get you back safely.

I know you are now in the other world beyond this one, whatever that may be. I don't believe in God or Heaven, but I do believe that we all return to spirit or light. I hope you can hear me. I know you were so frightened that night after you got out and the thunder and lightning were so loud and scary and the rain so torrential. I know you were terrified and that's what make me feel most grief. Not knowing what happened to you is also very hard. Somebody spotted you a few weeks after you escaped and I had distributed to neighbors more than 40 "safe boxes" with ferret food and bedding inside. And then a month later, someone thought they saw you crossing a road into the woods. If so, if it was you, you found a good place to hunt and survive. There are streams in there, and lots of burrows (many unoccupied), and lots of food sources. I hope you did not just starve to death out there. Even imagining that an owl or hawk or fox got you and killed is better than that.

I hope you had a good remainder of your life. I feel terrible that you thought I didn't want you back after you got out. It was an accident, but I think you felt I didn't let you back in. I didn't know you were gone right away and I didn't open the fence or make a way for you to get back, because I was afraid the other animals were get out. My mind didn't work well at that time and I still don't know why. Other things were going on. I had relied so much on my 19 year old daughter. She was so intuitive and wise, and I asked her what she thought I should do and she wouldn't answer me. I don't know why and even now, she won't tell me -- for she has grown away from me and is no longer talking to me -- again I don't know why.

But without her wise words, my mind shut down, which is so weird because every other time any ferret or cat was missing, I knew just what to do, and did it. So I feel like I betrayed you, Keiko. I gave you such a great life here and then I just let you go. It's not fair to you. It wasn't fair. I'm so sorry. I hope you will forgive me, Keiko. I love you and miss you terribly.

P.S. I hope you and Mora found each other (and Pancha, too) somehow, somewhere. I will write Mora separately, but say hello to her if you see her.