The cat who loved me.

by smartini on December 5, 2012

I’m not a cat person.  In fact, I would’ve said I pride myself in being a dog person.  Heaven forbid I should turn into ‘the cat lady’.  But then there was Mia.  A little spark of unconditional love that wedged my heart open one purring nuzzle at a time.

I met Mia when she was just a kitten at my friend’s house who had taken her in as a stray kitten.  She was a part of a litter his mom had found behind a grocery store.  Ziad, my friend, saw her pale blue eyes and fell in love.  He brought Mia home and became a proud poppa.  His brother would sneak home from school every few hours to feed Mia milk with an eye dropper.  Together, they nursed her to health. These confirmed bachelors wouldn’t dare have a girly kitty on their hands though.  Ziad especially, would play rough with her, disguise his cuddling as smothering to toughen her up.  I was always impressed at her friendliness when I would go to visit the guys, but it wasn’t until three Christmases ago that Mia kneaded her way into my heart.

Ziad travels quite a lot, and that winter, he was going to Lebanon for six weeks.  His brothers were also gone, so he was left wondering who could watch over Mia.  He asked me if I wouldn’t mind.  How could I say no?  It took only a couple days before I began to see that this was no ordinary cat.  I would hear her sliding around on my hardwoods in one room, then she would run to find me and tell me all about it—meowing and rubbing up against me.  As I would lie back on the couch, watching a movie, she would crawl up onto my chest, put one paw on either side of my neck and actually hug me.  And then there was the head-butting—if I would squeeze her against me (maybe because Ziad was so roughly affectionate with her as a kitten, she, unlike many cats, would ‘allow’ me to pick her up and tote her around with me), she would push back, balance her weight against me, and bump her nose against my nose, over and over.  But what really got me was how she would crawl under the covers with me at night.  I mean, there is nothing better than spooning a small furry, purring love-machine.

Well, by the time he got back, I told him point blank I was keeping his cat.  I was [mostly] joking, but much to my surprise, he said he’s actually been struggling with what to do about Mia.  Because of his heavy work and travel schedule, he was hardly home, and he felt he was constantly abandoning her.  He knew that she, unlike many cats, loved the companionship of human comrades.  There was no way he could give her up to a shelter and was just waiting until someone worthy of Mia’s love presented themselves to him.  Well, here I was.

Over the next two years, as I went about my life, Mia was simply a constant source of love and companionship.  She accepted everyone who came into my life as her own.  Each person thought, as I did, that they were her favorite, for no ordinary cat would be so happy to see them every time they come to visit.  And surely she didn’t greet everyone with such adoration.  But yes, that’s my love-girl, Mia—simply radiating affection.  Happy to sit quietly on her own during the longs days and nights that I would be away working, travelling or out with friends, and so warmly greeting me when I would be home with her.  She seemed quite pleased when I began working from home, and made it a point to wedge herself in between me and my computer screen as often as I would allow it.

Well, about nine months ago, as I was going through some major inner discovery and shifting of my own, so was Mia.  I was feeling the inner nudge to go exploring in the world, to satiate my desire to experience new things, find love, meet new people, see all there was to see, and discover myself as I discovered the world.  In hindsight, I see that Mia was experiencing a similar wanderlust. At first, I noticed that she seemed restless—she would spend all her time staring out the windows in my apartment.  There was a cat that roamed the neighborhood that would camp out under my window, and he and Mia would have some serious conversations through the glass.   When Mia began escaping, I figured I had better get a collar for her and get her microchipped.  She clearly had realized there was a big, wide world out there and she wanted to check it out.  But the urban neighborhood I called home was no place to have an outdoor cat, every time she escaped, I was just sick with worry that she would get hit by a car or into a scuffle with another cat or dog.  I was too worried that my little princess of a cat wouldn’t fare well in the big city.

Fast forward a couple months, and all of the pieces of my life were aligning for me to go on a bit of a walk-about; the terms of my lease changed at my apartment, and I would be giving it up; my job, which had previously been so demanding, was slowing to a trickle; and I’d broken up with my boyfriend.  All the areas of my life were neatly and tidily coming to a close at the same time—just as I was preparing to go off to London to work the 2012 Olympics.  It seemed the universe had lined everything up for me to turn my Olympics adventure into a broader journey. The only loose end was what to do about Mia.

Now, here is where the story gets interesting.  Take this with a grain of salt if you will – but I’m simply recounting the way things went down.  I didn’t realize that I had an animal communicator in my midst, but apparently I do.   A therapist I was seeing at the time surprised me one day when I was discussing with her my conundrum of what do with Mia.  How sessions with Nicole normally work is the following: I would basically give her a laundry list of all the areas of my life, where I stand and what challenges I’m having with men or work or friends, etc…  After I finish with my ‘to-discuss’ list, she generally begins at the top, and by the end of our time together, everything seems to make sense and I leave with ‘homework’ for each area of my life.  Well, this particular session, I mentioned that I was at a total loss of what to do with Mia.  That she just seemed different now, and that I wished I could ask her what she wanted and where she wanted to go while I traveled during the summer.  Would she prefer to go back to Ziad?  Would she want to stay with my friend who lived in in a quiet neighborhood and had a yard?  But Mia is a cat and I am a person.  We don’t speak the same language.  How could I possibly ask her?  And even if I could ask her., she’s still a cat and I’m still a person.  Is their logic and reasoning and explaining between animals and humans or is it simply instinct?  Maybe I’m just giving this all too much thought…

So, naturally I was surprised when after I’d gone through my laundry list, Nicole abruptly asked me if there was anything else.  “Nope, that’s it”. “Ok,” she says “Mia wants to go first.” Ohhhhhh?  I had no idea that–number one, Nicole could ‘communicate’ with animals, and number two, Mia would be present, listening and anxious to communicate with me! “Mia has a question.  If she goes to Sarah’s house, will she get to go outside?” I was shocked.  “Well, yes, I suppose that would be alright.” I said, as I now realized that it felt much safer to let my little princess roam in her fenced-in yard than the streets of my neighborhood.  “She says that she loves you very much, and that she has really enjoyed being both with you and with Ziad, before that.  But that these years have been like a monk’s life for her.  She waits in solitude and she loves you up when you are around, but she is ready to come out of the cave.  She wants to know if there will be birds and dogs and people that she can be with now.  She wants to enjoy the sunshine.  She knows that you are getting ready to explore the world and she wants to also.”  Tears came to my eyes as Nicole calmly spoke.  It all made perfect sense now.  And suddenly I was no longer the slightest bit scared for Mia to be an outdoor cat.  I could see that no matter what happened, even if she did get in a scuffle or, heaven-forbid, hit by a car, that it was her choice to be out in the world, and that she would accept any consequences.  That all was exactly as it should be.

I know this sounds crazy–I do.  But all I can say is that it just felt right.  Though what to do with Mia had been weighing on me heavily, I had sort of played it down while talking to Nicole about it.  So I was quite surprised when this became such and immediate and prevalent part of our session. As we continued to talk, I was emboldened by Mia’s obvious presence and recognized this unique opportunity to communicate soul-to-soul.  I asked if she would want to come back to me after the Olympics or if she was ready to move on permanently.  Her ‘response’ was again touching and freeing.  She ‘said’ that it depended on how my journey went this summer, that it just depended on where I ended up and if it was a place she would want to be too.  She wanted to make sure that I knew she loved me, but that it was time for her to have her own experience in the world too.  This, I could certainly relate to!

When I went home to Mia that afternoon, she was back to her usual adoring, cuddling self.  She did not try and escape again.  And when I asked my friend Sarah if it would be alright to test the waters with Mia, she was happy to.  Mia has never liked car rides, but with this new-found realization that Mia apparently did seem to understand what was going on around her, I had a new confidence in my attempts at explaining how things would be shifting for us.  I explained to her how I we were leaving this apartment we had called home for the last years.  I explained how I was going to be traveling for a while and that if she wanted, she could stay with Sarah, who had a big back yard, a dog, another cat and 3 roommates.  I also explained to her how I would be staying at Sarah’s too in between trips, so I wouldn’t be going away completely.  On moving day, as we got in the car to make our way to Sarah’s, I expected to hear the frightened low moaning that Mia usually serenaded me with on all car rides.  But not today.  She was calm and chatted away in her usual meowing instead.

The weeks that followed during our time of transition, while both Mia and I stayed with Sarah, I noticed Mia’s shift even more remarkably.  She seemed to physically transform.  The light blue, piercing eyes remained ever intent when she would run in from the yard and ‘tell’ me about her adventures.  But at 4 years old, she seemed to have a growth spurt.  Running up and down trees, sitting in the grass in the sun, and standing her ground with the other animals at Sarah’s actually made her bigger and stronger.  Whereas before she pranced around inside my apartment, ever so delicately, she now owned this place.  She even walked differently now and I’ll admit I was just a little sad (though very accepting of) her new-found freedom.  She no longer slept under the covers with me at night.  She preferred to roam around and be on her own for long stretches.

Watching Mia transform was a little taste of what it must be like to watch your children grow up and become independent.   And she was clearly more aware of all that was going on than I had previously given her credit for.  When I first got her collar, a couple months before, she struggled with it and tried to be free of it.  So, naturally, one day a week or so after we’d come to stay at Sarah’s, when she came in and was no longer wearing the collar, I was not surprised.  It was a ‘breakaway’ collar after all – so that if it ever got caught on a branch or anything, it would come off rather than strangle her. I asked Mia what happened to her collar, and Sarah and I decided we’d inevitably have to get another for her now, but that surely again soon when she’d be free of that one.  You can imagine my shock when, that very afternoon, Mia comes RUNNING into my bedroom, collar in mouth, jumps up on my bed and drops it right in front of me!  It was as if she knew that this collar represented the freedom that she so desperately wanted.  That when Sarah and I were disappointed in having to replace it, she went to find it and bring it to us and show us that she was worthy of this freedom.

As I was away for the 6 weeks, first travelling around Greece on my first solo vacation, then fully immersed in the craziness that is the Olympic games, I thought of Mia often, and occasionally got updates from the folks at Sarah’s. Though Mia had shown me such affection for 2 years, my heart didn’t hurt when I thought of her and her new life away from me.  Instead, I had an underlying sense of well-being, that she was quite happy, sitting in the sun in Sarah’s backyard, coming in when she felt like it and head-butting Sarah, Michael, Andrea, Andrew & Shaunte; now meowing enthusiastically to them about her latest adventures.

This fall, my adventures for the summer having run their course, my heart so full, but hurting just a little from a new love tried, but not what I expected [that’s another story], I came back to LA and was greeted with my adoring Mia of old.  Where I was expecting the new independent Mia, I found the purring love-girl that I remembered from years before.  She clearly could feel what I needed, for every night I slept at Sarah’s, she was again with me: under the covers again, that little snuggle-bunny, purring away and not leaving my side – day or night.

Thank you to Mia, who has showed me what unconditional love truly is.

My princess, Mia. This is a Mia hug…

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Green Bay Packers'blog December 6, 2012 at 3:57 am

A person essentially help to make seriously posts I would state. This is the first time I frequented your website page and thus far? I amazed with the research you made to create this particular publish amazing. Excellent job!


backlink tool December 6, 2012 at 12:35 pm

Excellent goods from you. I have understand your stuff previous to and you are just extremely fantastic. I actually like what you have acquired here, really like what you are saying and the way in which you say it. You make it entertaining and you still care for to keep it wise. I can not wait to read far more from you. This is really a tremendous web site.


linkshideawayrtion December 6, 2012 at 3:19 pm

Thanks very much for your downright website;this is the stuff that keeps me on track through my day. Ive been searching around for your site after being referred to them from a colleague and was pleased when I was able to find it after searching for some time. Being a avid blogger, Im blessed to see others taking initivative and contributing to the community. I would like to comment to show my support for your page as it is very challenging to do, and many writers do not get credit they deserve. I am sure Ill visit again and will send some of my friends.


Washington Redskins'blog December 7, 2012 at 3:19 am

You made some decent factors there. I appeared on the web for the difficulty and found most people will go together with with your website.


clip in hair extension style ideas December 7, 2012 at 7:12 am

Hello.This article was extremely remarkable, particularly since I was looking for thoughts on this issue last Sunday.


louis vuitton store December 8, 2012 at 10:37 am

I in addition to my guys happened to be reviewing the excellent tips found on the blog while suddenly I had a horrible feeling I never thanked the web blog owner for them. The boys became totally happy to study all of them and have now simply been taking pleasure in them. Many thanks for getting really considerate and for having these kinds of wonderful subject areas millions of individuals are really desperate to discover. My personal honest apologies for not expressing appreciation to you sooner.


diarrhea in dogs December 10, 2012 at 4:41 pm

I have been surfing online greater than 3 hours today, but I never discovered any attention-grabbing article like yours. It? pretty worth sufficient for me. In my opinion, if all webmasters and bloggers made excellent content material as you probably did, the net can be much more helpful than ever before.


gucci hobos bags sales December 11, 2012 at 3:56 am

I love Many of comments all grows older!


cheap nfl football jerseys'blog December 11, 2012 at 10:50 am

Whoa! This blog looks just like my old one! It’s on a completely different topic but it has pretty much the same page layout and design. Wonderful choice of colors!


where to buy canada goose December 15, 2012 at 9:05 am

wonderful post, thank you.


doudoune moncler homme December 15, 2012 at 9:57 am

This post is so help to me! Thanks for share.


moncler jacken December 18, 2012 at 10:38 am

great post, I am interesting in it!


Cheap Moncler Women Tulsa Shiny Jacket In Brown December 22, 2012 at 3:24 pm

I never thought I would agree with this opinion, but I’m starting to see things differently.


Emmy December 25, 2012 at 8:54 am

That’s the best asnwer of all time! JMHO


moncler kids January 7, 2013 at 8:09 pm

nice and thanks.


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: