As I write this, I am watching the sky change in a late winter sky. The clouds interrupt the blue as the sun sets, and creates a canvas for the last of the light to dance upon, changing the sky to a peach and purple glow. The room I am in is messy. We call it "the green room", because it's walls are in fact, a foresty green color. It is the extra room in the house, and as with all extra rooms in peoples houses, it collects random stuff. My computer desk is stuffed in a corner, and to get to it, you have to maneuver around an elliptical machine, a bed, and numerous other things that collect in every available space. Basically, I have a path from the door to my desk, and that is it. I've tried cleaning and trying to spiff up the room, but it always manages to backslide into mayhem. Someday, I envision a room designed creatively and specifically to nurture any creative bipolar hobby of mine, so I can purge my thoughts in a orderly fashion. That is my goal.
For now, this will do. As I type, at my feet there is a kitty lightly snoring to my left. Every once in awhile my voice will break the silence and he will purr at the sound of it. To my right, there is a wet snout that bumps my hand if I drape it down, and a small lick to my ankle, if any flesh is showing. My animals know this is my usual haunt, and they follow me up here to keep company with me. I can't remember the last time I was up here alone.
We have two seventeen year old cats, one fifteen year old cat, and a bubbly, crazy one year old dog, Daisy. Even though the cats are old, they have no problem letting Daisy know who the elders of the house are. She may be longer than them, but they are taller, and have sharper claws with the words "king of the house" engraved on them. Even when we had a Bull Mastiff/ Great Dane mix, the cats still ruled the roost. They are some bad mothers, those cats.
We got our oldest cat, Simba, when I was eighteen years old, just fresh out of high school. He was a spry little house tabby who could jump higher than any cat I knew, and was clever, and spiteful, but also friendly and personable. He would pick tacks out of the wall if we pinned anything up, and would dump them in our shoes, so when we'd step into our shoes, we were in for a painful surprise. Every morning he would sneak into our room and watch Jeremy out of the corner of his eye as he'd tip the glass of water he'd keep on his night stand, and spill it with a clatter, and bolt before the hand whiffed through the air. And, no rubbing his belly. That's a big no-no if you like your arm the way it is.
Simba is old now, his short fur full of little mats that I am trying to comb out. When I pick him up, instead of a meow in protest, I get a silent one with a squeak at the end. He is my kitty that will come when he's called, my friendly trusting kitty. Even if he has his issues, I will still care for him dearly until the bitter end.
Gypsy is his "sister". We got her after Simba with his bad little self, needed someone other than us to thrash on. She took his beatings for awhile then fought back. She is a little cat Ninja with a very very strong will to live. She will never die. Given to us by a friend, she was born in a battery box and spent the first six weeks of her life heavily infested with ear mites and crawling with fleas. After we rid her of that in a nightmarish flea dip, she never trusted us, and spent the next eight years hating our guts. She warmed up to me a little, but only on her terms, and only if we were outside. It all changed when I was pregnant with Vanessa. She loved my belly with a capital L. When given the chance, she'd cuddle up to it and sleep with her head listening to the heartbeat. We moved into a new house just months before she was born and Gypsy would have none of it, and disappeared for almost a year and a half. We'd see her and bait her, and call for her, but she didn't want anything to do with us, so she left during the worst part of our lives. Slowly, she made her way back, and by the time Grace was born, she was our kitty again, and is now extremely friendly in her old age, and not just to me, but to everyone.
Our third cat, Little Pooh, or Poo, I don't have much to say about, except that he is some sort of evil disguised as a fluffy tabby. He is mean to the core, and by nature, since I raised him in a nice, loving way. He hates the other cats, and they hate him. He hisses at me when I put him out at night and randomly attacks me and anyone else on a whim. He is bad news bears, but will also beg to be pet, and then turn around and bite you. Evil, I tell you. Don't let this picture fool you. I snapped this very rare footage to document this momentous nicety of him rubbing on my feet. Two minutes later, I tried to move my foot and he latched on. Bad, naughty kitty.
During the time Vanessa was alive, we had a dog/ pony named Barkley, our Bull Mastiff/ Great Dane. Barkley was a big galumph, and had the brute strength of ten He-men, and the brains of a chicken. I could never walk him because he was just too big, and litterally would pull me, regardless of if my feet were on the ground or if I was skidding across the ground on my belly. If he saw something he wanted, it didn't matter who was on the other side of the leash, he was going to get it. Luckily, he didn't have a mean bone in his body, and was just a big sweetie. We had him for nine years. The picture below is of baby Grace taking a ride. I remember coming home after Vanessa had died, and I immediatly wanted him gone. The pain and numbness had spread like a disease, and I felt nothing towards him, or anyone. I had loved him before, but after an explosion of the heart, I could not love, and I wanted him gone. He stuck around though, and I went through the motions of taking care of him, but left out the love part. I know he felt it. Poor Boo. (That is what we always called him, Boo). He didn't derserve that, but I couldn't help it, and it is only now, that my love for animals has returned after an almost ten-year hiatus. My heart is slowly allowing it in, which is no small feat.
Daisy propelled into my heart, patching any misgivings I had. I was, and am scared to love again. Human or animal. However, she has wriggled into the spot of family dog, and I can't help but fall head over heels. I simply adore her to pieces.
Animals have a magical ability to move your soul in ways that only they can. Patient healers with fur. Simple pleasures are taken in exchange for a purr, or a lick on the cheek. I do love my animals, and am so happy that now my heart is letting me, after such a long, wicked, dry spell. I can only offer them my love back and hope that the interruption can be forgiven.
A scratch behind the ears, and the purr at my feet says it can.