My earliest memories are obscured in darkness, but this is what I do remember. I was being carried in a large paper bag by someone whose face I don’t recall. They took me to a place made of stone, a big building with lights and strange smells and someone put me in a little cage. I was cold and scared there and I cried for my mom, but she was nowhere to be found and couldn’t hear me. I had water and food and a place to relive myself, but where was my comfort? I was so small.
And then I saw her. She was so beautiful, enormous compared to me, a giant so much larger than me that she could hold me in one hand without effort and put my whole head in her mouth if she wanted to, but she didn’t try to eat me. Instead she picked me up and nuzzled me into her neck, and I loved her at once. I realized she was only a little one of their kind, even at her size. I decided I would make her mine. She made a weird sound come out of her mouth, a string of noises I would come to understand meant “unconditional love”.
After another strange happening where I was being carried by another big someone I don’t remember into a room with metal shiny things that poked me, I woke up with a shaved belly and a green “x” tattooed on me. Who knows what that was about?
And then SHE took me home, my little-big one I chose to love forever. She became my Real Mommy and she gave me a whole backyard to play and explore in and practice hunting bugs and rodents. One time I caught a dove in my mouth that was about twice my size and to this day I don’t get why the bigger ones of her kind her yelling like they were horrified because my Mommy thought it was awesome. I brought it to their door as a most sincere love offering of my talents.
It was a year into my young life when the unexpected happened. My heart was nearly broken when another little one of my own kind showed up at our house. The nerve! Was I forsaken? Suddenly unloved?! My mommy assured me I was still #1 in her heart but this little pipsqueak was invading MY territory. I was about to bite his little head off in revenge when I decided, no, I would spare his life because he is cute, and I can lick him and give him comfort. And I let him know who’s boss.
The years passed on and soon I was approaching my early middle age after a successful young adult career of hunting, fastidious grooming, patrolling my land, campaigning the big creatures for more and better food with my calculated vocalizations, olympic snoozing, and most importantly, snuggling my Mommy, who was always there for me and loved me every minute. But soon I came to realize that, although my big mommy loved me and would never leave me, her mommy was mean to her and yelled at her a lot and it scared me so my Mommy took me to live with her in many new places over the next half of my life until now. Besides, my mommy had reached adulthood of her own by this time. In truth, though this loss of my first precious territory and the little guy of my own kind was difficult for me at first, I soon adapted elegantly and put ever more of my security and love into Mommy as my mobile territory, you could say.
This was, however, all nomadic movement within one great landscape of similar weather, trees, smells and colors. I loved this place, it’s dry air and stony warms I could have my sits on outside of our houses. My favorite part of all was the grand, beautiful, snowy, pink light-spangled mountain range to the east and the delightfully sparkling blue-green river snaking down the valley from it, just out our backyard. Even though my kind are little creatures who frighten easily at too much travel in those big rumbly boxes that move really fast, we can still sense deeply in our hearts the presence of beautiful lands around us and nearby –we are territorial, after all. How do you think we stay so entertained when we are home alone all day? We go prowling for joy in our visions.
Alas, I am old now and a year ago the time came again to move, but now to leave this place I heard them name “California” with the mouth-sounds they make, and go with my mommy to the place called “Washington State” where it is rainy and dark and green but still so very beautiful, and in the summer it is sometimes not so different-looking from my homeland. I like these forests very much because I could hide and pounce in them easily if I were a younger dish. I stay indoors only now because I need an inhaler twice a day to breathe and I can’t hunt for noms outside now at my age, but my mommy loves me still, and she has a mate who I love very much, too. He’s good to me and he lets me sit on his head and he gives me loves, kisses and pick-ups like Mommy does. I hope I will live for a good few years more. I am old now, and I hope to spend the rest of my days in snuggly peace in Mommy’s arms, dreaming of my wild ancestors and the purr of the beautiful universe.
Originally written January 15th 2015
RIP Rosie 2003-2015