He always knew it was time for me to pray or work when I sat down on the couch with either my Bible or my laptop. He’d crouch on the floor, readying his muscles to spring, and look up at me, his eyes sparkling green with excitement. Once eye contact was made, he’d pounce up on the arm of the sofa, rub his head against mine with an affectionate purr then saunter across my Bible or my laptop. His tail lingered and flit, caressing my face as he made his way to my other side. There he would curl into a furry ball and continue that steady rumble of delight until he fell asleep.
We’d sit like that for hours, or many a chapter. I began to refer to him as the ‘editor’. And I loved him. He was my muse, one of my very best friends, and he purred at the sight of me.
He had many names, like royalty. As a kitten the kids and I sorted out what we should call him. At that time we thought he was a she. When they suggested ‘Portia’ I was delighted, thinking they meant the heroine of Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice. That was until they explained they meant Porsche—the car. But it was a good compromise, until we took ‘Portia’ to the vet and discovered she was really a 'he'. Lana, an English major, then suggested Othello. That fit because he had a beautiful wedge-shaped face that was totally black, except for that little white dribble of white below his lip that travelled down to his all white belly as soft as a cloud.
But we don’t stand on ceremony in our house. During his kitten—Ninja—year where he completed many an athletic feat, my husband called him Push-kat-o. But as he developed into the sleek, elegant creature he was, he became Mr. Kitty to many, including the vet. To Lana he was always Meow Meow because they never did get along, he considering her bed to belong to him. Naturally there was bad feeling and he vocalized it loudly whenever she turned him out of her room. But all he had to do was silently pad across the hallway to my room where he knew he was always welcome.
But to me he was always PussPuss, a term of affection that was never general in any way. Someone once told me that a cat isn’t truly loved until it’s named, thinking that perhaps PussPuss wasn’t as revered as we said he was because we never could settle down to just one name. Oh, but the opposite is true. No creature of God’s could have been more dearly cherished. Or now missed.
He’s gone now, far too soon. But the God I serve is a huge God, one who sees all, even the smallest sparrow that falls from a tree. PussPuss is curled up close to my Lord, waiting for me to come back to work. We’ve got too many chapters to write.
I miss you my little friend. I miss you.