This story is amazing, but true. You may believe it or you may not, but the upshot of it is that Homer took on his mistress's health issues at a great cost to himself.

homer and marian 1994Homer was a very beautiful Abyssinian cat.  He weighed less than ten pounds after a full meal, and his graceful little body hugged my belly every night as I slept on my side, curled around him.  Even when I shared my bed, Homer would creep under the covers as soon as our breathing deepened into sleep, and he was still there in the morning. 

Through marriage, divorce and several tumultuous relationships, he was my constant companion - uncomplaining, unruffled by anything and always present for me.

He often gazed at me with huge, round, unblinking eyes and I could hear his words inside my heart: "You are wonderful, Marian, and you are my friend.  I accept and love you completely."

For many of those years, I was a heavy drinker.  I didn't feel "wonderful" most of the time, depressed by both home and work situations.  A few years after getting sober in 1985, I decided to have a complete physical examination to find out how much damage had been done.  The tests were thorough, spread out over a couple of weeks.  As the doctor sat with me to give me the results, he began by asking: "How many years did you say you drank too much?"

"Twenty," I responded, "especially the years 1980-85.  I was depressed for much of that time."

"Well, you are one lucky lady," he said.  "Your liver and kidney functions check out fine.  In fact, the scores are unusually good for someone who was a heavy consumer of alcohol over a long period.  Quite honestly, I was expecting to have to give you bad news, but you're in great shape!"

Phew, what a relief.  I celebrated with a decaf coffee and a hot fudge sundae.

*  *  *  *  * 

Homer died a couple of years later aged 15.  Abys are a long-lived breed, often lasting into their 20's.  But he began to weaken earlier than that.  When I took him to the vet for testing and treatment, she was surprised at the results that came back from the lab.

"Marian, I'm really sorry to have to tell you this, but Homer doesn't have long to live."

"Oh no, he's been so healthy," I objected.  "Everyone comments on how sleek and young he looks."

"I know his skeleton and general physical appearance is wonderful. The problem is internal - his liver and kidneys are failing much more rapidly than I expected. We can assist him with fluid injections, I'll teach you how to do it and give you the equipment.  He may live a bit longer that way."

I stared at her hard.  "His liver and kidney functions are failing?"

"Yes, I'm very sorry.  Here's what I suggest we do . ."

*  *  *  *  *

Homer was alive for only a few weeks more.  You can draw your own conclusions - they may or may not agree with mine.  I believe that Homer's little body, on some subtle level, was assisting mine to process all the toxic stuff I was ingesting for so long.  And his finally gave out.

Homer was a tiny four-legged with the soul of a Dalai Lama.  And he was my friend.  I miss him.


© Rev Marian Hale

This story was actually published as part of a recent book on animal communications -- Beyond Words by Marta Williams.

This lovely story about Homer can also be found in the NAPPING ON A SUNBEAM section.


The Very Best Toy for Cats

"Of all the [cat] toys available, none is better designed than the owner himself. A large multipurpose plaything, its parts can be made to move in almost any direction. It comes completely assembled, and it makes a noise when you jump on it."

Stephen Baker

Sponsored Advert