An old limerick I wrote about my cat, Yin, who I’m dedicating this post to. She’s still alive. First, I want to start by saying that Yin is the smartest cat I’ve ever known. I’ve known many cats.
She was born either on Easter Sunday, or the Thursday after, on the same year as my son (2001). Her mother and her aunt, identical, pure white sisters, got pregnant at the same time (for a few months we were all walking around the house ready to pop). Snuggles (my mom named her quite aptly) and Luna insisted on sharing their litters, so I’ve no real idea which of the kittens belonged to which mother.
Circumstances forced me to say goodbye to my twins, who both went to very nice homes not long after the kittens were all adopted out. Yin is the only one that stayed in my life and ended up back with me, mostly because she decided I was her human, period.
When she misbehaves, she gets lectured. She actually listens to the lectures, sulking. What’s more, whatever I lecture her about, she stops doing! She meows frequently and in so many different ways and even sings for me when I’m gone too long.
She leads us around when she needs food, water, snuggling in the bed, or whatever she wants like Lassie to Timmy at the well. She often likes to sit in my lap and watch me write and read. We play hide and seek-scare too. No one will ever bully or convince me to give her up. I dread enough that she’s middle-aged and try my hardest not to think about how many years are left for us.
When she lays just so in the light, her extremely soft fur lights up reddish-brown, especially in the summer. The most gorgeous shade of black with red-brown highlights. Perhaps that sounds ordinary enough, but the effect is truly eye-catching to me.
Most of the time she acts rather indifferent. Despite stereotypes, this isn’t typical cat behavior. I’ve met several cats in the past that pine for constant attention and love as much as any “typical” dog. Yin does her own thing when she wants to, likes her space, and likes to act the brat (ambushing my feet or elbows).
She always knows when I need her though. Always. Most recent example: A few nights ago I got to reading about all sorts of pain around the world. My empathy and frustrated sorrow kicked into overdrive and I cried my eyes out for these people. Yin ran up meowing, jumped on the recliner’s footrest and reached a paw out in a patting gesture.
I looked down at her and she mewed at me, purring loudly. She rubbed at my hands and knee and climbed into my lap. Once there, she stood up, paws on my chest. I find it interesting to realize the silence around her purr. It seems she looked at me and we talked, without either of us actually saying a single word. She finished with a rubbing nudge to my chin and a very human-like concern for comforting me. I scooped her up and let her “baby” me. Only in moments when I hurt that badly does she let me hold her so close and tight (but not too tight) and purr. I cried into her fur while she occasionally petted or patted me with one paw and her head. Usually she’s there before I start crying.
I love this cat. I really love this cat. She’s awesome, gorgeous, the Einstein of the feline world and I’m her person. I feel so very blessed by that.
From the other side of my living room she meowed just now, then flopped over on her back to strike her “cute pose.” I swear she went to a secret school of cute.
Her sixth sense for when I need comfort (no one else in the house will know I’m crying, but she’ll run in from the other room anyway) also kicks in at amusing times. For example, when I sing anything by Evanescence, or anything similarly “sad.” I pour my voice into it, if I’m sitting down, she’s soon in my lap worry-meowing and trying to comfort me. Like now, singing “Good Enough” and here she comes, meowing.
Do you have an amazing animal companion too? Yin and I look forward to reading about them in the comments. Yes, she’s in my lap now, watching the screen.