The other day a stray black cat came scurrying into my house. It was a cold rainy night and my husband, Angel and I decided to feed and give her a place to sleep for the night and bring her to the shelter the next morning.

As I wrote in my previous blog post, I have a really soft spot in my heart for stray cats. So despite the fact that my I’m grieving to pieces over my cat, Owie’s recent passing, I knew that I couldn’t leave this sweet angel in the rain. As soon as she came into the house I was struck by how lovable and gentle she was. Wherever Angel and I would walk, she followed our footsteps and kept on giving us little head butts, which in catspeak means “I love you.” Her sweet nature made me wonder if she was a housecat who had lost her way. The cat’s presence in the house made me feel the loss of our Owie even more. I felt the sadness erupting in me and knew that I was certainly not yet ready to have another pet. I knew hubby felt the same. The plan was to take her to the shelter the next day.

I’ve had wonderful experiences with the Dutchess County SPCA shelter. All the people there who helped to treat Owie in his last days were extraordinary caring and kind professionals.  In fact I was so moved by their generosity and kindness that I wrote a Letter to  the Editor in the Poughkeepsie Journal to shed some light on this amazingly caring organization.

I didn’t expect that when I would call them that it would be necessary to require an appointment to bring Lovey, but it was. With mixed emotions, choking back sobs, I made an appointment for Monday morning. My next call was to my daughter, Cara to ask her to come over to give me some emotional support. I felt raw and ragged, completely overwhelmed with emotion. Worrying about  my mom, missing Owie and thinking about Lovey shivering in the rain was too much for me to stand.

As I sat on the floor waiting for Cara, I felt another wave of sadness come over me. I’ve been going through a seesaw of emotions around caring for my mother whose health is in decline, and I really have been missing her. The cat nestled close to me and butted her head against my knee, I felt comforted. In that moment, seeing she was a female, I named her “Lovey”, the name my British Grammie (My mom’s mom) used to call me.

As I got up, and walked to the kitchen, Lovey followed my every move. A quick peek in the pantry revealed a can of tuna. Almost as soon as I opened it, she gobbled it up. I found a large can of sardines which she polished off along with a few laps of water.

When the family came back home, the house was abuzz with activity. Cara quickly bonded with Lovey and she swept her up in her arms, and held her lovingly, massaging her head, rubbing her ears and cuddling her little belly. Lovey was just loving all the attention. Last night she slept warm and comfortably safe in our home.

I’m a big believer in the power of the law of attraction in that I recognize that everything is energy. And by focusing on something intently, it will eventually appear in your life.

After Owie passed away in January, it left me feeling so vulnerable. it’s still painful for me to watch cat videos or hear stories about cats. I’ve kind of transferred my love of cats to a fascination and curiosity for dogs that remind me of Owie. I love dogs, but I know I’m not a dog person. Their barks are too loud for me. I’m used to love and cuddles from cats.

Over the past few months, I’ve been toying with the idea and wondering what it would be like to have another relationship with another cat. I’ve been wondering how I would feel about it and how the rest of the family would feel about it too.

By my focusing on cats, starting to watch cat videos, looking at old photos of Owie and often thinking how wonderful it felt to have him here with me, the universe gave me the answer I needed–I’m not ready for another relationship with another cat.

As soon as Lovey bounded up the stairs, it felt like someone had stabbed me in the heart. It hurt more than it felt right. I know now that my heart needs more time to mend. But I do feel good knowing that I’m respecting my own boundaries. The old Andrea would have felt compelled to adopt Lovey and give her a home. I don’t feel that way now. I know that Lovey has a better chance of finding her forever family with people who will cherish and love her as she deserves.

I realize it wouldn’t be fair to Lovey, myself or my family to adopt her if we can’t commit to giving her every bit of love we gave to Owie. Don’t you agree?

If you live in Dutchess County, please consider coming to the DCSPCA to come and meet Lovey. She is a precious angel filled with love, ready, eager and just waiting to share it with a loving home. Could that be you?