Grateful Heart Monday

Welcome to Grateful Heart Monday where each week begins with a slice of gratitude, which for today is for the three years I got to spend with my cat Smokey and all the great memories I have of him before his sudden passing a week ago.

As I mentioned in my last article, my cat Smokey abruptly passed recently when a urinary issue he’s had ever since birth caused a complication that led to his bladder bursting. While I am saddened by the unexpected loss of what I feel to be the most unconditionally loving animal I’ve ever been around, I have much to be grateful for from the brief time I had with Smokey.

From the onset, Smokey bonded with me, and on many levels, kind of acted like a dog. He always wanted a sample of anything I consumed (especially whipped cream and blue cheese!), would chase after these small little furry balls wherever I’d throw them and then return them at my feet waiting for me to throw them again, he’d consistently roll over on his back when I called him this silly name, “Klitty Klaty”, at the top of my lungs, he’d race after me around the house any time I exploded down the hallway making whooshing noises, he liked me giving him belly rubs on my lap facing me, and loved going up to every guest in our house to get some ear scratches. It’s funny how they say dogs are the most loyal companions, but Smokey, in my opinion, proved that maybe cats can be too.

Smokey was a great healer in many ways too. He constantly knew when I was having a high pain-filled day, as he’d follow me around until I laid down somewhere, at which point he’d then curl up between my legs, begin purring, and fall asleep, which generally did help me to feel better. He also did his best to distract me with playtime as well whenever I hurt, which usually led to me laughing and feeling much better because of it. And I mustn’t forget how he was a great mirror for some of my character defects like my OCD, as for example when I was staring in the bathroom mirror too long, he’d remain outside the door incessantly grooming himself almost as if showing me how silly I was being.

Another unique trait that I became very grateful for as well with Smokey was him sitting in our bedroom window waiting until I got home each night, at which point he’d race to the front door and meow as soon as I walked in. And whenever I did any type of outside work, he’d remain standing by one of the opened doors watching me until I came back in. Smokey also loved sunning himself on either my partner Chris’s lap or mine in the driveway, which is the one thing I know Chris is going to miss the most, as they usually spent hours doing that in the warmer months.

Smokey also loved to be flown around the house in the laundry basket while I yelled “Super Kitty” and liked swatting in fun at my hand while I pretended to be a bee buzzing around him. Oddly enough, I could also pick up his small tufts of hair anywhere around the house and hold it way high up in the air, where he’d meow repeatedly until I let it go, at which point he’d jump up to catch it and promptly consume it! And something I know my partner was extremely grateful for, as was I, was our house remaining free from most spiders and other insects because of Smokey enjoying eating them whenever he saw them. Oh, and I can’t forget that Smokey even liked to play hide and go seek with me from time to time as well.

While it’s painful to think he’s really gone in such a short period of time, I have so much to be grateful for when it comes to Smokey. A trusted companion who constantly remained by my side and taught me how important it is to show unconditional love to everyone and to balance that with taking care of oneself, especially when hurting.

I truly will miss peaking around those corners in my house, barely making eye contact with Smokey, hearing him let out a few small squeaks almost as if saying “I see you!” I miss you plenty already and thank God for the gift I had with you for those three beautiful years. You definitely left me with much to be grateful for when it comes to you Smokey and know I will always love you.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson