Friday, May 7, 2010

Strangers in the Night

I had to travel to Atlanta unexpectedly early this week when I received the sad news that my father was hospitalized. Happily, by the time I arrived in Atlanta, my father’s condition had stabilized a bit, and over the next few days he was able to benefit from an expanded system of support.

I knew that my abrupt departure from home would alarm our cats, and I worried that Lucius, in particular, would make me pay for my absence. But I had to tuck those thoughts away as I headed for Atlanta to be near my father’s bedside.

While in Atlanta, I was comforted not only by my mother and my brother, but also by my brother’s two cats, Squash and Mathis. They are elderly felines, and poor little Squash has great difficulty walking in a straight line. She also cannot jump like in the good old days of her youth. Mathis, on the other hand, still enjoys roaming outside and searching for chipmunks (so I have been told).

I am certain that both cats picked up on my vibes of feeling sad and discombobulated. They also seemed to know that I am a Cat Lady because on the first night that I slept in the guest bedroom of my brother’s house, Squash and Mathis found me. I was delighted to place Squash on the bed, and she promptly made a beeline for my chest, where she slept for most of the night. Mathis occupied a corner of the bed. I almost felt like I was at home again, if only there had been another eight cats encircling me.

I wish to thank Squash and Mathis, initially two strangers in the night, for watching over me protectively. They kept me company as I contemplated the fragility and unpredictability of life. I am a broken record, but I will repeat that people underestimate the perceptive powers of felines. I am grateful that Squash and Mathis trusted me to be attentive to them, and they returned the favor beyond measure.

Query of the Day: How do your cats know when you are facing tough times?

1 comment:

  1. Oh, yes! They all come to comfort and check on us if either of us is upset or ill--even the aloof Mia.

    I hope your father is doing okay!