My cat is my spirit animal. I’m thoroughly convinced.
Correction: if I believed in spirit animals (do I?), she would be my spirit animal.
Her name is Sniffy (before you go judging, I named her when I was 2 years old and she sniffs everything. I rest my case.). She’s a beautiful, petite, long-haired black cat who lives in our garage and on our many acres of land around my house. No, she’s not an indoor cat, she doesn’t sleep with me at night, and she could totally rip my face off. She’s pretty fierce. I only hope I can be half the woman she is. Well I mean she’s a cat so I want to be half the cat she is, but I’m human so I want to be a human form of her. You know what I mean.
I was cuddling with her while sitting in my garage and had a multitude of epiphanies about why she is my spirit animal. So I mentally compiled a list for you! You’re welcome.
1. She’s an old soul who can still be as playful as a kitten
This right here is how I feel almost all the time. Sniffy is 16 years old, which for a cat is pretty darn good. She can be Queen Sniffy and keep her distance and treat our tomcat flippantly while somehow remaining respectful… she’s quite the animal. She also still chases butterflies and bats at them with her paw and last summer she killed a baby rabbit and left us the head. She runs straight up trees in mere seconds. But her black fur grows grayer each day, and sometimes you just look at her and feel like you should bow down to her just for the amount of wisdom in her stance.
My name literally means “soft haired and youthful.” So that’s a start. I have always looked older than my age, being offered alcohol too young, asked if I have “any gas outside” in middle school, and asked where else I have applied to schools while tagging along on college visits with my brother (who is 3 years older than me). A lot of people have these experience, so I don’t brag about them or anything; I leave that to my mom. I have also been considered wise for my age, and I tend to find more comfort around strange adults than strange teenagers. On the flip side, I am always looking for something fun and playful, even though if my serious switch is on, sometimes I think I scare people. I don’t take anything seriously, in general, but I know what needs to be taken seriously and at least on the inside I know the weight it carries.
2. Eye Conversations
Sniffy is a cat and I am a human, therefore we cannot verbally communicate. Today, however, we definitely exchanged some looks where she was clearly saying, “You’ve been gone for how long and you think you can just stop petting me?” I just now realized I never really thought about what she might be reading from my eyes, but I hope she reads the love I have for her. I think she knows.
3. Chatty Cathy or Silent Susan
Both Sniffy and I seem to share the quality of being extremely talkative or extremely introverted. I don’t know why, but this is just how we both function. I’m sure it makes me unpredictable to those around me, but I personally don’t mind one bit.
4. I want my future relationships to mirror this one
Now I’m pretty sure you’re just laughing at me for this one, and I’m kind of questioning it as I type, but I have supporting details:
a) She wouldn’t stop headbutting my stomach in the desire to be closer to me. She would knead at my lap (I had towel protection from her dagger claws) and then ram into me before she curled up as close to me as she could possibly get. I think she preferred when I slouched because then my boobs would kind of cover her on top, too. This is how I want my boyfriend/husband to be one day. I want them to want to be close to me, so close that even when they can’t physically touch me more, they still want to be closer. That right there is loving desire.
b) Her level of dependence is normal and healthy. She depends on me for some things, meaning she needs me to live a happier life. However, she could also live alone, in the wild, and still survive. I want my future significant other to feel like they need me, but not to the point where it’s unhealthy and they actually think their life depends on me.
c) Separation is okay. Sometimes Sniffy will just walk away from me, and I might wish she was still there, but later she’ll be back and I know she will. Sometimes I have stuff to do, and she’ll look at me longingly as I go away, but she accepts it and moves on with her life. In a relationship, I think it’s important to have lives outside of the relationship, like work and yoga and painting. There has to be time where one person can decide to be gone on vacation with their friends and the other person might miss them but knows they have their own things to do. That’s just what a healthy relationship is.
Maybe the next time someone asks what I want to do when I grow up, I’ll say be just like my cat. Then 1) I wouldn’t be lying and 2) they’d probably stop asking me about it.