In a weak moment about a year ago, I posted on Facebook:
“I am not a cat person. I am thinking of getting a cat.”
Well, truth be told I am not really much an animal person.
Bailey, my youngest son’s half-Collie/half-Golden, lived out the latter of his fifteen years under my roof. My divorce decreed me all three animals – my children’s pets. Along with Bailey, there were two cats: Lucy and Katrina who preceded him to heaven.
And at each pet’s passing, I had to admit that I was a whole lot more attached to these fur-coated creatures than I imagined. Well, not nearly so much to the cats as to Bailey.
Bailey and I had this quiet comfortable roommate thing going on. And then he was gone.
It has been three years now. It is Bailey I miss. That particular golden-haired member of my household. Bailey who was afraid of soda cans and squeaky toys. Bailey who I used to drag around the block. Bailey, the dog who barely knew his name.
But with Bailey’s departure, I discovered the particular pleasures of the single life.
After work, I now could go wherever I pleased. No need to rush home. On rainy mornings, I could stay dry in my pajamas. No need to get drenched outdoors. Wardrobe wise, I could wear black and no longer need to stash lint rollers all over the place. No vet bills. No boarding costs. I had both the freedom and the funds to travel — free as a bird!
But I would still get a little misty eyed when I thought about Bailey.
I did not miss having a dog.
Well, mostly I did not miss having a dog.
Tempted by a rebound relationship, I briefly considered adopting a little Bichon Frise pup named “Posh.” But someone else rescued him before I got there. The timing of which may have rescued us both from the canine equivalent of a one night stand.
My desire dissipated like vapor. Faded in the blink of an eye.
You see, I delight in the solitude of my sacred space. The freedom to stay in my pajamas till almost noon. Curled up on my couch, befriended by books and lost in my thoughts.
I live on my own but that does not mean that I am lonesome.
Living alone is not the same thing as being lonely.
Yet even the Queen in her Castle, craves companionship from time to time.
On the human side of this equation, for the past couple of years, I have posted my endeavors here. Blog worthy. Humorous, disastrous and less than successful.
Meanwhile, well-meaning people, kept encouraging me to get a companion of the four-footed kind.
“Get a cat. They are so easy!”
“A cat to keep you warm!”
So last summer, I surfed the SPCA sites looking for a cat. Maybe a cat would be a better fit.
Crowdsourcing on Facebook, I posted:
“I am not a cat person. I am thinking of getting a cat. Please, advise.”
And friends I did not know were friends – or friends I did not even know I had – commented, reacted, liked, and commented on the comments.
There was no shortage of replies:
- Adopt a kitten.
- No, kittens tear up your house.
- Adopt a rescue cat.
- Adopt a two year-old cat, already housebroken.
- No adopt an old cat.
- No, they have urinary tract problems.
- Adopt a black cat because they get left behind.
- No, adopt a special needs cat.
- A deaf cat, a blind cat.
- A cat with FIV (poor thing).
- Better yet, get two cats. To keep each other company.
- (Uh, aren’t two cats twice as expensive as one?)
- Or adopt a Maine Coon cat, it’s almost like a dog.
- Or a British Short Hair, Alice in Wonderland’s Cheshire cat.
- Or maybe, just take my cat.
- No, for heavens’ sake just get a kitten.
- So cute.
- So cuddly.
Hmmmm, no I don’t think so. My answer was a definite NO.
This happened. Two orange aliens from outer space invaded my place.
August a year ago, Cheshire and Charlie came home from the Fairfax County Humane Society
Since, I have made, at least, a hundred trips to PetSmart for:
Litter boxes, litter, litter box liners, litter scooper, dry food, canned food, food dishes, cat carrier, pet gate, food bowls, cardboard scratching things, cat toys, cat bed, catnip spray, don’t-pee-here spray, don’t-scratch-there spray, no-odor spray, cat-stain spray, cat brush, kitten collars, cat collars, cat proof trash cans.
I’ve spent about a bazillion dollars, give or take a few.
The world, as we know it, forever seems to be coming apart. I wish I could save it — but of course, I can’t. So, I decided to save Cheshire and Charlie. It’s the very least I could do.
So, I am now a certified “certifiable” cat lady.
It’s like living with wild cats and drunk acrobats in my condo. Cheshire has spider-man tendencies and literally climbs the walls. Charlie, is a hunter par excellence, who ferociously tears up toilet paper rolls.
They are hysterical. Cheshire and Charlie bring a spark of life into my swinging single’s lifestyle.
And this is how God intended it to be.
“It is not good for the human to be alone…”
So out of the ground the Lord God formed every animal of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to the human to see what he would call them; and whatever the human called every living creature, that was it’s name. The human gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every animal of the field…”
Feathered friends. Furry friends. Some slimy and scaly, too. Some that go “moo.”
And, of course, God made Adam a human friend too. 🙂
Our two-footed households runneth over with four-footed friends.
To walk along side us. Fall asleep in our laps. Chew up our shoes. Raid the trash. Wag their tails. Bark at the robbers. Catch the rats. Scratch the furniture. Make us laugh.
On the Feast of Saint Francis, let us give thanks for —
All things bright and beautiful,
All creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful,
the Lord God made them all.