They were seven weeks old when my friend Lisa brought them into my life. I had just thrown my husband out, clothes and all, and she wanted the void filled for me immediately. She accomplished that! They were both so tiny they could hardly climb into the litter box. Lucy was jet black with little pointy ears and a rounded face. Ricky, a little smaller, was brown and black with a pointier face. His ears always looked like Batman!
They did fill a void, one I didn’t realize I truly felt. Not just of companionship and loneliness, but of true unconditional love. It was then I realized that their love was different than anyone else’s. They were my children, and I felt such love for them and they for me. We built routines together and never went very long without checking with each other to know who was where and what we were doing.
That first night, the two of them worked with their tiny claws to climb the stairs and come bounding into my bedroom. They then worked equally as hard to climb up my comforter and onto my bed where I awaited their arrival. Nobody got any sleep that night….8 little paws just running amuck on my bed, under the covers, over me. It was so joyful.
The love the three of us had for each other was special. They were loving to each other as well as to whoever was at my house. Ricky was always the more affectionate, I have found that in most male cats. Ricky was special though. His sweet nature and love of body heat gave him the nickname of lover among my friends. He was very intuitive as well. He would know what I needed when. One morning I was very upset and laying on my bed in tears. He quietly jumped onto the bed and laid down next to me. He put one paw over my arm as if to pat it and didn’t make another move or a sound.
I could always feel Ricky up against me, in bed, in the kitchen, in the bathroom. He leaned his body against me or slept in the curve of my legs. He loved body warmth, especially my body warmth. He would lay with his front arm around Lucy and often shower her with love and affection, cleaning her head or body. Then he might turn on her and chase her around the house, she would hiss but it was a game of “catch me if you can!” They were terrific together.
His love filled my heart for seven years. His tragic death not quite two weeks ago has broken it. I miss him terribly, as does Lucy. But, I have also been showered with love and care since then. The outpouring of love, care, sympathy and support has truly comforted me and given me a sense of others’ unconditional love and care for me. I received fruit, cards, a book called “cat heaven,” and a pillow with Ricky’s picture on it. The picture is of him in one of his favorite spots in my house, in my bathroom window. He was watching the birdies, and probably was chirping almost as if he was speaking with them.
I started thinking about what Ricky in my life has meant to me, the lessons, the blessings that he gave me. He gave me comfort at all times, something I need especially when I’m alone. He gave me unadulterated joy! His love of the animals outside was just fun. My yard faces into woods and is filled with birds, squirrels, chipmunks, fox, deer, frogs (oh so many frogs!), turtles, and who knows what else. Ricky loved to watch them all, and sniff whatever ones he could get closest too, especially frogs and turtles.
One day while sitting outside I saw his head jerk. I followed his gaze and there was a frog. He walked over and started to sniff the frog. The frog jumped which caused Ricky to jump. He composed himself and walked to the frog again and sniffed it. The frog jumped and the game went on. Ricky was so occupied at least for a moment. He was my “ADD” kittie.
He taught me how much I loved body heat, just like he did. One night when I returned from a long trip, he got under the covers and spooned me. He even placed a paw on my hip. His love for me was unlimited.
He was a lover. And he helped me feel unconditional love. He was in my life only for a moment, but his love left an indelible mark on me. I will be forever grateful for raising Lucy and Ricky and having such a lover in my life.
Lucy and I are navigating life without him, but every once in a while I hear a noise that sounds just like him and know that he is with us, loving us and watching over us.