Me & My Girl

I love to stare at your face.

You love to sit outside.

Being outside is your favorite place to be.

You’re happier out here;

Happiest when it’s cool outside, as it is tonight.

I love to watch you lay in the grass.

When you were younger, you used to stand at attention

but I think your body hurts these days

so you prefer to lay down.

I love to watch your nose wiggle

as you take in different scents

with uneven shallow then deep breaths.

I don’t smell anything.

But I know you do.

I love the way your nose raises when you catch a particular scent.

The way your eyes stare intently in the distance.

The way you snort as you take in the scent.

The way you see something, and your ears cock in attention.

I love the way you look back at me, over your shoulder.

The way your ears soften in happiness when our eyes meet.

The gentle, single thump of your tail, as you smile back.

Some days you wander slightly to investigate other smells.

Some days you get restless and roll on your back, pink tongue hanging out of your mouth,

twisting your body from side to side, getting every itch on your back as best as you can.

Sometimes, like tonight, you are as still and peaceful as the night.

I think I can hear your soul.

And I love you even more.

Suddenly, you jump up and growl.

You spotted something, and I instinctively say ‘no!’

You freeze but stare in one direction.

I see it now too: a cat.

You love to chase cats almost as much as you love to chase squirrels.

You take one step forward, and let out a very low growl that ends with a pleading whimper.

I gently tell you ‘no’ again.

No, because I don’t want you to run across the street.

No, because I don’t want you to hurt your leg again.

No, because I don’t want you to strain your old heart.

But instead I say, ‘you know what? Go get it!’

And you do. As fast as you can!

And for a moment, time stands still.

In this moment you could be 11 weeks or 11 years; it doesn’t matter.

I can’t tell as I watch you run.

You reach the cat just as it gets away.

Everytime.

Still smiling, I watch you make a big loop until you’re running back to me.

I squat down to greet you, and we celebrate your chase.

“Yes!” I cheer, “you got that silly kitty cat! You got it!”

Your tongue is hanging, your eyes are bright, your tail is wagging,

and you’re bumping into me excitedly with your shoulder.

For a moment, only you and I exist,

and we are the happiest souls in the whole world.

Love, Mommy


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