Joy, Mia

It’s been an unbelievable year since the dusty little furball I now call Nala-Mia showed up.

She’s been with HBlu and I during some rough times. She was with us the day that leashed Blu was attacked by an unleashed dog. Interestingly, she showed no fear, waiting and watching. She followed us home, as she had been for a few weeks. I already worried about her at night; was relieved when she’d show up for breakfast. Was overjoyed the first day she let me touch her; the first day she ate from my hand.

We’ve been through a few twists and turns, barely avoiding craters of disaster. When she showed signs of respiratory distress, I feared the worst. I wasn’t able to get her into the carrier the first two times I tried. The third time wasn’t easy or graceful, but, it was successful. I figured she’d be annoyed with me, after that. I didn’t figure she’d be lost for three days in an animal hospital, and end up traumatized and unexamined.

Much like Harley Blu after his encounter, she just wasn’t the same when I got her back. She’s still a bit skittish if I move too fast toward her standing up. If I’m sitting, reclining, sleeping – she’s a love-bug.

Much like Harley Blu, I want her back the way she was before she was damaged. He’s getting there with the help of meds and chiropractic therapy. She’s in love with him, and he seems to be more understanding of that, lately.

I’ll confess, at times, I feel badly for them, both. HB was an only cat-child for almost 9 years. His breed has a preference for being the sole focus of attention. She just doesn’t completely understand the cat world. She has learned to play – as opposed to being terrified of strings and catnip mice. She has learned to interpret the exact moment when Blu has had enough play, and she scurries away.

I know Blu doesn’t like sharing. I know Nala-Mia wanted back out for several months. She’s not pursuing that as much. With hope, I interpret that as she is comfortable rather than defeated. I also know that the pre-yawn snap of her isn’t a real reflection of joy.

It is however, a real reflection of my joy. It is a comfort that she is safe – not hungry, not frozen, and bot likely to get run-over by a car.

I’ve mentioned before, COVID gave me the time to be patient with her. Afforded me hours of adjustment while working from home. So, I was particularly excited to see a call for Pandemic Pet Adoption stories. Our short-story appeared in Michigan Medicine Headlines this week. In fact, that brief (very brief), 223-word, 2 paragraph “caption,” turned into a more concise 165 word account.

So, maybe it may not have had to take as many words to summarize.

The struggle to reduce is still real. I’m still all for details, and, maybe, mildly less distrustful of edits.

My big-picture presentation will always be a gloriously detailed meal. Though, I concede, an edit is admirable as a taste-tempting appetizer.

Find our shorter story here: Pandemic Pet Adoption – Mia’s Story Short

Quote for the Week:

Happy Anniversary to Us!

Well-Timed Butterflies

The frown was a reflection of this disappointing thought:

Why did I think of my father instead of Jeff?

Why do I always feel spirit-driven advice is messaged from my father?

Why do I never hear from Jeff?

Why do I never dream of Jeff? Well, not never. Maybe twice in 14 years.

And here’s what wisped from through my canyoned heart straight into my creviced mind: Because you wouldn’t listen, anyway. (ouch.)

Because I won’t listen?

Because I don’t listen, on purpose?

I know I haven’t listened to those pre-death platitudes he liked to offer. The ones I dismissed as stupid answers to my standard bitching response to his multitudes of stupid anti-helping-his-situation behaviors.

Like not getting up every hour to help his circulation. Like chewing tobacco. Like drinking liters of Mt Dew. Like not watching his diet, his salt intake.

Like dismissing the real message in my accusation, “You must not love me very much if you don’t want to stick around.”

At first it would always be, “I’m not going anywhere.”

Then, it became annexed with, “but, everybody’s gotta to die sometime.”

Oh, the ire that inspired. “You don’t have to help it along!” I’d argue. “Why don’t you care that you’re going to leave me alone and miserable.?”

“Aw,” he’d push away my fears with air-palms. “We’re not Canadian geese, ya know. You’re not gonna be lonely.”

To which, I’d either tearfully reply, “I am.”

Or angrily assert, “I’m a #&0#@$# swan!”

“You’ll meet someone,” he’d confidently continue. Later, turning to, “You’ll meet someone better than me.” Which is actually quite hurtful, now. Either my tough-love attempts were interpreted as complaints of worthlessness or he was being his own worse enemy by putting himself down.

I haven’t once listened to the still living well-speakers offering echoes of the positives above for years. You know: Jeff would want, Jeff would be, Jeff wouldn’t be, and even once a more direct approach of, Jeff thinks it’s time to ….

I’m not entirely un-voluntarily stuck. I still don’t want to hear Jeff’s hopes that I’ll move on and be happy. What I want to hear is, “You’re just having a bad dream. None of this is true or real.”

Maybe he’d tried at first. I wouldn’t know. Lack of listening, again. Maybe he skipped right over that. Maybe he was wise enough to send my dad to get my attention.

That’s what I’d like to think. Otherwise, it would merely be uncoupled concurrence. Reading “A Box of Butterflies,” contemplating signs of spiritual arrival and a well-timed burnt-orange butterfly.

Except, I don’t subscribe coincidences. I believe in fate and His Holy Plan conveyed concisely within Jeremiah. 29:11.

The chaining, a reactionary result of missing documents.

So, no. I absolutely did not find what I was looking for.

But, I reluctantly confess; I might have found something more important.

Poem for the Week;