My Small Miracle

Ever since I was a little baby I have loved cats.  I have grown to love and understand them more as my life progresses.  When I was in elementary school, while all my gfs were obsessed with horses, I would spend hours in the library after school reading about cats, mostly in veterinary texts. 

At the moment my life pretty much revolves around my best friend and soulmate - Driftwood.  I have based several major life decisions around this cat since I met him in 2005.  He was just a baby.  He found me while I was traveling in New Mexico just outside a navajo reservation.  He was injured, hungry, and extremely friendly.  He followed my boyfriend back to our motel room and came inside on his own.  When I picked him up he went totally limp and purred louder than anything I have ever heard, especially for a creature his size as if to say "mommy!  I finally found you!" and collapsing with relief after a long search.

In that moment, I was extremely shocked by his instant comfort with me, and a strange sensation began to sink in.  I suddenly felt a god-given conviction that this tiny animal had been sent to me for a purpose, and that it was my duty to protect, love and care for the little guy.  Even though I was going to be on the road for a while, and taking a kitten along presented several practical obstacles, I realized that my extensive past experience and self-training with cats had perfectly prepared me for the challenges ahead.  In other words, I thought "if anyone can do it... its me".  I felt that I certainly couldn't leave him behind.  And thankfully it worked out better than I EVER could have imagined.

Drifty had lesions on his hind legs which felt like thick scars, his third eyelid was torn, he was dirty, and very hungry.  But he was still a gorgeous kitten, with a mackerel pattern, white-tipped paws front and back, and the most adorable daub of white across his little nose.  The black concentric circles on his forehead looked like a little fingerprint.  I carefully stroked him with a damp wash cloth and took off a layer of dry dusty dirt from his coat.  Then we fed him a tin of sardines, which he gobbled up ferociously.  The following day our journey began, and little Driftwood was unnaturally well-behaved.  All he did was sleep and purr while in the car with us.  I felt like a new mom- and I think my brain chemistry was reformulating for that role, as I felt divinely guided to be his fierce protector!  He came with us to check out some ancient ruins in the next town over.  The park ranger let me carry him into the exhibit even though it was technically a "no pets allowed" zone.  I had fashioned a collar be cutting off a corner of my own bandanna and tying it around his neck, and a leash by tying on a length of twine to the make-shift collar.  As we made our way through the ruins on our first day together, Drifty seemed like a little feline Indianna Jones, investigating the ancient structures with a fearless curiosity.  As the long days in the car resumed, Driftwood was nothing but a complete angel.  He "self-packed" (squeezed into a nook or cranny or on my lap or at my feet) and just slept no matter how long we had to drive to get where we were going.  He was such a good kitty and everything was easy because he was so relaxed and cooperative.  Over that time period I grew increasingly attached to him, and my sense of responsibility toward him continued to intensify.  I couldn't wait to go home where he could be a "normal" kitty and not have to be on the road all the time. 

When I got back to "civilian" life after being a wanderer for so long, I became depressed, and Driftwood was there to nurse me through it when I had no one to turn to.  I could be in the depths of despair and just looking at him or holding him (still totally floppy and laid back and huggable) would instantly make everything feel okay.  He grew up into the sweetest, funniest, happiest cat ever.  He's humongous now.  Not fat, just a giant kitty, but he has always retained that incomprehensibly sweet disposition from his baby time.  I refused to move in with my long-time boyfriend for years because I absolutely had to bring my cat and he lived in a "no pets" apartment.  No human will ever come between us, that's for sure.  But now the 3 of us live very happily together, and my bf loves Drifty, too!

The End  :D

Strangeland123 Strangeland123
26-30, F
5 Responses Jul 22, 2009

Thanks for the comments! Cats really are amazing creatures, and their friendship with humans goes back a whopping 10,000 years. <br />
Mistaken- Drifty is just a regular American short-hair with mackerel tabby pattern. Of course, he's a lot more to me, but that is technically his breed. The boyfriend I was traveling with initially suspected that we had accidentally adopted a bobcat because when we fed him he grew so quickly. He tripled in size in about a week. Also his purr was REALLY loud, and his feet were too big for his body! (Though he eventually grew into them). Man, thinking back on those days, and how I didn't know if driftwood had some wasting disease or if he was going to make it or not... and how precious and cute he was, and still is... gee, I love that kitty. I think I'll go give him a cuddle now!

wow, that was a pretty amazing story. Do you know what breed Drifty is? (just wandering) . I'm so glad that Drifty is in good health now. He really seems like a dream cat. (my cat would be perfect...if she were that good in a car)

You have a lot of talent at storytelling, and your story about Drifty makes me smile! Hope you'll always feel that way. I do, too -- cats have been my life, all my life, and no one will EVER come between me and my beloved cats, who give unconditional love, loyalty, and beauty!

the way you wrote, i was scared he had died at first! good thing he's okay. i used to have a lot of pet cats but my sister and brother are allergic so oh well....

PS- Happy endings rule!