I have been blessed with a partner who loves me unconditionally and has taught me many lessons that have helped me become the woman I am today. And no, I am not talking about a boy. Well, at least not a human boy.
My cat, Puss-n-Boots, who came into my life when I was around the age of three, has been there for me no matter what. He is almost 20 years old now and his love has not wavered in the slightest, even though over the years his eyesight may have. I have no idea what I am going to do without Puss-n-Boots and to this day, I believe that it is the love we have for each other that has kept him alive long past any other cat I have ever known. Everyone has that childhood pet that they will never be able to replace. Whether it is a cat, dog, lizard, or a bird, the kindness and love between your pet and you can stick with you forever.
Having a pet throughout my childhood taught me responsibility. There was a living, breathing being that relied on me to feed it and lookout for its well-being (sometimes my Mom would help me take care of him too). But for the most part, that cat depended on me. It was a great feeling, and seeing him live this long because of my care is extremely rewarding.
The top thing I want to thank my childhood pet for is the fact that Puss-n-Boots was there for me when no one else was. When I was upset, either from being bullied at school or from a confrontation with my parents, I would go into my room and shut myself off from everyone. But without fail, I would hear Puss-n-Boot’s paws at my door, asking to come in. He knew I was hurting and made sure I was okay every time when I could not stand being around anyone else.
My childhood pet has taught me how to age gracefully. Puss-n-Boots, being at least 18 in human years (we got him from a halfway house when he was full grown so it is impossible to tell his exact age), he is 93 in cat years. He still does his business in the cat litter box, jumps on top of my mom’s tall desk to look out the window, and puts up with my little brother and our dog! I want to see a 93-year-old human do all of that!
Long story short, I would not be the person I am today without my childhood pet. As the years go by, I become more and more thankful for Puss-n-Boots and the friendship I have with him. If you are lucky as I am to have your childhood pet still with your family, take some time to show them that they are still important to you. They have been there for you always!
Published by Odyssey Online on Feb. 26, 2016