I knew I wanted a cat. I desperately wanted a cat. Before sealing the deal on my Cleveland apartment, I made sure I was allowed to own one because I knew I couldn't go much longer sans fluff.
I planned to go to the Cleveland APL, just a few blocks from my then-new apartment, to look at the cats they had available for adoption. But then, a friend texted me to tell me she'd found a cat up for adoption on Reddit, & its current owner lived just a few blocks from me, too, right here in Tremont. At first, I was disappointed about the idea of not going to the APL to coo over every feline on the premises - but once I met this guy, I knew I wanted to be his mama.
And so, he came home with me exactly one year ago today.
I'd planned to name him Omar, from The Wire, but once I met him & spent some time with him, it didn't feel quite right. After much brainstorming, Mike & I settled on another TV show-themed name: Helo, named for a character from Battlestar Galatica. It suits him perfectly.
I worried that adopting a cat might be bad for my relationship. Mike wasn't a big cat person - which is sort of an understatement, actually - but almost immediately, he loved this little guy as much as I did. And it's mutual. Helo runs to the apartment door & meows whenever he hears Mike coming up the stairs on his way home from work.
He's totally manic, sometimes the sweetest guy in the world & sometimes mean as sin. He bites. He scratches. He has induced countless scars on my arms & chest. He hisses at my mother & claws at my calves when I walk past him in the apartment. And one time, he pooped in the bathtub.
But he's also my best little buddy. I talk to him an embarrassing amount when we're alone in the apartment. I call him my Boo, my Fluff, & a dozen other stupid, schoompy nicknames. When he's feeling nice, he's so nice. He licks my hands & purrs as I pet him. He sits right on my chest when I'm lying in bed, & he tries to groom my hair.
He's chatty. He chirps & screeches & meows & makes all kinds of little noises."Why are you always yelling at me?" I demand to know of him, but he just yowls at me in response.
He wakes me up every morning circa 5am by either thundering across the apartment, biting me on the arm, or yelling in my face - not because he needs anything, but because he's bored. He just needs us. Companionship. Attention.
Oh, & he's enormous. I call him my little lion, but there's nothing particularly little about him. He weighs 16 lbs. now, bigger than both of my mom's dogs, but he isn't fat, he's just a big guy. His paws are huge, like he might grow even larger still. God, I hope not.
He loves wet food & tries to eat right off our plates. His favorite spot to sit is in the cardboard Amazon box I once dropped in the corner of the living room & have now resigned to never throw away. He desperately wants to go outside, so badly that he sits on the end table near the door to our deck & paws at the doorknob while meow-screaming. His favorite game is playing "cat cave," invented by his dad.
In short, he is my favorite little thing in the world, the best-worst cat I can imagine. I dream of a day when he settles down & doesn't always want to run full-speed around our small apartment, when he instead wants to be cuddly & cozy a little more often. But even if he doesn't, I love him just as he is - claws & all.
Happy adoptaversary, little guy. I am so glad we found each other.