I have been absent of late. We have friends in from South America and are so busy visiting, practicing our Spanish, and generally entertaining each other that I haven't been writing or reading blogs. I fully expect that once they leave I'll be back to my normal routine, but for now I'll post a quickie.
Because of the rotten cold weather last week, we decided to pack up the car and drive East until we found the sunshine. Once we found it, we settled in to a friend's cabin and spent the next several days swimming, horseback riding, and eating ourselves silly. By the time we were headed for home, I was missing my kitties desperately (the dog got invited along for the ride). We arrived home to two affection-starved felines who had lost all pretense of independence. They wanted some love. Lucky for them, there were seven pairs of hands willing to oblige.
As I fell into bed at the late, late hour of 9:30 my big beautiful tabby cat followed me. S. calls him my boyfriend because of his preference for my attention late at night. He settled in next to me and began purring his loud, smooth, rolling purr. I scratched his favorite spots around his ears and he repaid me by rasping his perfectly pink tongue across my other hand.
Sometime around 2:00 AM he returned. Not fully awake, I began stroking his short silky fur and he walked in long ovals, rubbing the top of his head along my arm over and over again. We spent ten or fifteen minutes in this way, assuring each other of our mutual affection and it occurred to me that a cat is the only creature who could wake me at this hour and receive praise for it. I am kind but not terrifically patient with my kids at such a time and should the dog wake me with barking at 2:00 I am generally not pleased. There is something about knowing that Peanut has sought me out that makes me feel honored. He reciprocates my affection quietly and, aside from a gentle nudge, is not demanding. He lets me know that he is pleased by purring and almost always snuggles in to fall asleep within 15 minutes. I am fully present when we spend these minutes together, not distracted by daily tasks or other people. I love that I am not worried about falling asleep again or fulfilling someone or something else's needs. In these moments the simple act of petting Peanut is completely satisfying for both of us.