I have this cat we rescued and named Frank Sinatra. He’s a beautiful orange tabby who when we found him as a baby had the brightest blue eyes (thus the name). We call him Frankie most of the time. He is elusive and prefers hunting outdoors to being inside. When he is inside, he is usually curled in a ball on my side of the bed or sleeping on the ottoman if I am on the couch. Frankie tolerates petting for about 10 seconds and then he is squirming away. But I know this cat loves me because he chooses always to meet me where I am most relaxed.
Our other cat, a gray tabby, is Sammy Davis Jr. (I couldn’t stomach the thought of calling him Deanie, for Dean Martin. Notice our cats are named after the Rat Pack–appropriate don’t you think? But I digress…) Sammy wants to be everywhere I am. He is under my feet every time I turn around. He will jump up on my lap demanding cuddle time and touching his nose to mine in what I choose to call a kitty kiss.
Molly, or Puppy Fox as my granddaughter calls her, is our dog. (She really does look like a fox!) Molly is close to my side always and must suffer from separation anxiety. She comes flying to the front door, barking as loudly and as obnoxiously as she can whenever she hears my car return. Almost as though she’s saying, “Mommy, mommy, mommy! I missed you so much!” She demands my attention every time I sit down.
I love all three of these pets but they each demand love from me on their terms not mine. I can try to force my terms on them but they are unhappy when I do.
So why am I comparing my cats and dog to loving adopted children? Simply because after two years, I have finally decided to accept Frankie’s love expression the way it is and in that instant God showed me the comparison to my adopted children.
If I am willing to receive love from them only my terms then I will miss the love messages they send me every day.
My 16 YO son smiles and pats me in the back. My 15 YO son rarely touches me unless I ask for a hug and then it is very brief, however, he will rush ahead and hold open every door for me. My 12 YO wants to serve me. When he is feeling loving he is asking me what he can do to help and offering to do other ‘s chores. My 7 YO son lives to make me smile. These are their expressions of love which I must hold deeply in my heart especially when I am not being loved the way I would prefer or in the way my biological children express their love for me.
I know my children aren’t pets, so please don’t load up my comments with little nasties, but I am grateful for the lesson Frankie taught me this am when he laid on my chest and let me pet him for exactly 8 seconds before leaping off and laying at my feet while I wrote this.
To my adoptive sons, I vow to treasure your love deep in my heart and to love you in the way you’ll know it best!