Another Cat Post

Ha! See what I did there? Cat post… Anyway, my cat doesn’t use a post because she prefers the wicker laundry basket to pull on her claws and since this post is about her, the bad attempt at a joke is invalid. See? I won either way. If you liked the joke, I won. If you didn’t like the joke, it was invalid anyway and thus, I won. So much winning!

Like I said, this post is about my cat. Due to the popularity of my last post about my cat, “The Reluctant Cat Whisperer,” I’ve decided to give you an idea how my cat came about and why I love her…even though I don’t consider myself a cat person. She’s special.

My cat, I just call her Good Girl, literally showed up at my doorstep the day after I was diagnosed with stomach cancer. Like I said, however, this post is about my cat, not the cancer. Besides, I’ve been all clear for almost a year! Back to the cat…

I used to have my office just outside of my house in what we call “The Shack.” It’s a converted unattached single car garage and very comfortable. It’s shaded and has a sliding glass door, a regular door, and a window, so it always stays cool in the summer heat. When Good Girl showed up at my door, it was an overcast day in March. I had the door shut while I worked, but that didn’t stop the meowing I heard from outside the door. Of course, I went and opened the door, said “Oh, it’s a cat,” and she just sauntered in like she belonged. I looked around and saw my wife hiding behind the corner of the house, watching to see what I would do. I shut the door and tried to treat the cat like I would any other client I might see in my office…

ME: So, what can I do for you?

CAT: Meow.

ME: I see, well…hey! Do you really think it’s a good idea to get on my lap? We just met.

CAT: Meow.

ME: Well, okay then. You are pretty soft.

From that point on, Good Girl and I “were like peas and carrots!” There, my one Forrest Gump reference. Been wanting to use that one for years! Anyway, before you think God magically put the cat at my door, I need you to know that He had helpers. Somebody dropped off a couple cats at my neighbor’s house. She already had one cat and didn’t like the thought of three. My wife was visiting her when she said this. Walla, now we have a cat.

The dedication to me was immediate. It was like she saw me, sniffed me, and then decided, “You’ll do.” She follows me everywhere, indoors and out, and sits near me when I work. She sits on me when I relax to read or watch tv. At bedtime, we have a normal tradition that will cause her to meow loudly if we break it. About an hour before bedtime, I’ll let her out to do her business. When it’s about time, I’ll let her back in and hold a perfectly good conversation with her while we go upstairs to bed.

ME: So, anything new?

CAT: Meow.

ME: Hmm, I see. I also saw that other cat across the street, is she a friend?

CAT: Meow.

We’ll do this all the way up the stairs. Then she’ll stop to use the wicker laundry basket (pay attention, we’ve already covered this) while I get undressed. Then she’ll come up to me before I get in bed so I can pick her up and place her gently on the bed. She can’t jump (not sure what happened before I got her) so I try to accommodate her when needed. Then I’ll get in bed, pull up the covers, and she’ll meow her way up my chest until her nose is inches from my face. I’ll pet her until she’s satisfied, then she’ll lay on my chest and stomach with her little face resting on my folded hands at the top of my chest. Seriously, she gets so close I can pick out the individual flavors in the Meow Mix she ate an hour ago…that close. Then we’ll fall asleep.

My wife liked to call her my “cancer kitty.” She spent a lot of time laying on my stomach and I can’t rule out that she was part of the cure. Whether she was or not, I was extremely grateful to have her companionship. My only worry was that she might be an angel and would leave for another patient when I got better. She stayed. She also continues to be devoted to me. I’m convinced she’s the sweetest cat alive.

Do you know how animals can give you different expressions depending on what’s going on? Like, dogs will look guilty and sad if you just caught them doing something you both know he shouldn’t be doing? Or like, cats will look at you with contempt and disinterest if you just caught them doing something you both (I think) know she shouldn’t be doing? There’s a happy look, a relieved look, an all-business look…especially with dogs and trees during a walk), a sleepy look, a scared look, etc. Well, my cat is so sweet, she only has two looks. An “I love you please pet me” look and a “don’t look at me, it was that stupid dog” look.

ME (staring at the cat): Did you do this?

CAT: Meow (while looking at the dog).

ME (Still staring at the cat): So you’re saying the dog did this?

CAT: Meow (content with her blaming).

ME: Ok, we’ll just ask the dog. Did you do this?

DOG (immediately making a guilty sad face): Um, it’s a hairball, so, well, maybe I did, um, yeah, I probably did, um, wait…what did I do again? Is that a car door I heard 5 miles away!?!? WOOF WOOF WOOF BARK BARK!

And that’s how that goes.

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