This is a little story about a cat named Atlas. In order to understand how great she was, you have to know a bit about her background.
I wasn’t lucky enough to have known her right away, but my fiancé did. When she was found, it was discovered that she had literally wallpapered inside her make-shift house to keep her kittens warm. She clearly had the maternal instinct down to a fine art but she wasn’t well. She was emaciated, dehydrated and full of an upper respiratory virus however she was a fighter.
Although she had a lot of love helping her recover at the vet clinic, my fiancé knew that this little kitty kitty was destined to come home with him. Luckily for me, my fiancé and I eventually moved in together and I too got to enjoy the love Atlas brought. (I also inherited the job of treating her asthma every day which really wasn’t a problem because she was great for it! )
Fast forward a year and now it was time for our clan of kitties to meet our new bundle of joy, a little boy!. We were wary of our cats at first because they hadn’t been around newborns in over a decade however there was no trouble. Our two other cats could have cared less, but Atlas was very curious.
From the first moment Atlas met our son, they had an unbreakable bond. Kyle would have a nap and Atlas would be outside of his play pen. Occasionally he would fall asleep on the couch and sure enough, Atlas would be beside him, (on the outside of course to “protect” him ). When he cried, Atlas would wake up and come investigate; when he played with his trains, you were sure to find Atlas in the middle of his track. It was really an amazing thing to watch.
Atlas began to cough more and more. The medication the veterinarians at Briarwood prescribed weren’t being effective anymore. She would have an “attack” in the middle of the night and come into the bedroom to “ask” for help. I would do whatever I could to help. Sometimes it would be that bad I would literally have to turn her upside down and jump to try to clear the mucous that was stuck in her throat. Then came the dreaded day that taking her outside didn’t work anymore.
Now I have been blessed with some amazing kitties but this was going to be the worst drive to Stoney Creek yet. I had to not only take my sons “best friend” away from him but also my fiancés kitty kitty. As hard as it was, we were able to give her what she deserved and that was to no longer suffer. She went peacefully and with dignity.
We have just had our one year anniversary of her passing but she is by no means gone. Atlas and my son has shown me there is no doubt a human and animal bond and it can start at birth. Even though he was only 2 years old when she passed, he often asks for his “Atlas” back. It is so hard to tell him she can’t come back but she will forever be in his heart. Just the other day, he woke up in the middle of the night asking me to call heaven because he wants Atlas back.
I will always be thankful to Atlas for teaching my son what it is like to unconditionally love a pet. Now we have our cat Spam…let’s just say he has some big paws to fill 🙂