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15 January, 2016

A LIFE LESSON


Under the scars of a hard life Ugly was beautiful


I know for a fact that many of my readers are pet lovers and for that reason I pass on a story that is sure to tug at the heart strings.  You might even want to have some Kleenex tissue within reach.

Ugly!!??
What’s in a name?  You’d be surprised!

Everyone in the apartment complex knew who “Ugly” was…He was the resident tomcat.

Ugly loved three things in this world – fighting, eating garbage, and shall we say love.  The combination of these, coupled with a life spent outside, had their effect on Ugly.  I’m going to leave the rest of this story to a kindly woman we’ll call “Betty”.
“To start, Ugly had only one eye and where the other should have been was a gaping hole.  He was also missing his ear on the same side, his left foot appeared to have been badly broken at one time and had healed at an unnatural angle making him look like he was always turning the corner.  His tail was missing, leaving only a small stub which he would constantly jerk and twitch.  He would have been a dark gray stripped tabby, except for sores covering his head, neck and shoulders.

“People would say ‘That’s one ugly cat!’  Children were warned not to touch him.  Adults threw rocks at him and sprayed water on him when he approached their homes.
“Ugly always had the same reaction…If you turned the hose on him, he would stand there getting soaked until you gave up.  If you threw things at him, he would not run away.  Rather he would curl his frail body around your feet as if seeking forgiveness.  Whenever he spied children, he would come running and meowing frantically as if begging for their love and attention.

“One day Ugly made the mistake of sharing his love with a neighbor’s Huskies.  The dogs did not respond favorably and Ugly was badly mauled.  From my apartment I could hear his screams and I tried to rush to his aid.  By the time I got to where he was laying, it was apparent that Ugly’s sad life was almost at an end.
“Ugly lay in a wet circle, his back legs and lower back twisted grossly out of shape, a gaping tear in the white strip of fur that ran down his front.  As I picked him up and tried to carry him home I could hear him wheezing and gasping. ‘I must be hurting him terribly’, I thought.

“Then I felt a slight movement followed by a tugging and sucking sensation on my ear…Ugly, in so much pain, suffering and obviously dying, was trying to suckle my ear.  I pulled him closer to me and he bumped the palm of my hand with his head, then turned his one golden eye towards me and I could hear the distinct sound of purring.  Even in the greatest pain, that ugly battle-scarred cat was asking only for a little affection, perhaps some compassion.
“At that moment I thought Ugly was the most beautiful, loving creature I had ever seen.  Never once did he try to bite or scratch me, or even try to get away.  Ugly just looked up, completely trusting me.

“Ugly died in my arms before I got him back to my apartment but I sat and held him for a long time afterwards, thinking how one scarred, deformed little stray could so alter my opinion about what it means to have true pureness of spirit, to love so totally and truly.  He taught me more about giving and compassion than a thousand books or lectures ever could and for that I will always be thankful.
“This tiny, abused ball of fur had been scarred on the outside but I was scarred on the inside and it was time for me to move on and learn to love truly and deeply…To give my all to those I cared for and to those who cared for me.

“Many people want to be richer, more successful, well liked, beautiful, but for me I will always try to be Ugly.”
Note to Betty:  You may always try to be Ugly but to me you will always be beautiful.

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