On March 19th of 2014, animal A1304716 became Cloud. Three years on and I can still remember his initial, impersonal “name” from memory.
The older I get, the more I see how people change over the years. I see how I’ve continued to change. I see the marvelous ways my partner continues to change. And I have been privileged to see how Cloud, this fascinating creature, continues to change.
This year, as he turns five (we don’t know his birthday, so we consider his adoption date his birthday), I have a few more observations.
(Also, I know this piece isn’t game related, but it was timely, and, to be fair, Cloud has historically seemed to enjoy watching me play games, so, there’s that.)
I am home with Cloud during the day. We spend a ridiculous amount of time together. Since we adopted him three years ago, he has only ever been left home alone perhaps six times, each of those times around an hour or so. Other than his weekly trips to camp and his weekend mornings at the dog park, he and I are constant companions.
Needless to say, we aren’t always glued to each other at home. He goes where he wants, when he wants. He is sometimes right next to me, resting or just smiling at me (he has a delightful husky grin), and other times, he is in a different room, legs up on the wall, sleeping peacefully.
This is why it amuses me when my partner takes him out for walks in the evening, as soon as they come back inside, Cloud’s first order of business is to find me, wherever I am, to sort of check in. It means so much to me that even though we spend all our time together, he still cares enough to want to see me again after being apart for 15 minutes.
Another situation along the same lines, Cloud can be anywhere in our place when my partner comes home, but as soon as he walks in the door, Cloud wants to be next to me. Nevermind that he has seen me all day, now he wants to be near me. I don’t fully understand, but I do appreciate it.
The last two months I have been severely ill. I’m not sure how much he understands, but he seems to be aware that something is different. Typically, during the day, he needs to go outside two or three times to use the bathroom. Since I have been ill, he has often been holding it in all day until my partner comes home and then he wants to go out. This is perhaps the most powerful show of his concern for me, as he has been watching me laboriously move from room to room with a keen eye. He knows something is amiss, and I can very much tell he is trying to offset how he can. He is allowing me to rest and he seems to go out of his way not to disturb me. It is terribly kind and if I think too much about it, I start to cry because it moves me so much.
Though our first couple of weeks together were difficult, things turned out remarkably well. He is so sweet to other people (a technician once came to fix something and couldn’t stop calling him a “teddy bear”), and he is kind to creatures as well. Long ago I taught him to sit down if he wanted to look at birds or squirrels, and he often does when we are out together. Sometimes I wonder how he feels about me, but that is my own issue. I see how connected he is to my partner and how he adores him, and I’d be remiss if I said I didn’t sometimes feel like the outsider, but such is the way of life. I’m just grateful to be a part of the trio.
I love Cloud. I love him so much that sometimes it feels like my little heart is going to explode. I love him and his warm, marzipan-y, frito-y smell. He’s a dreamy, dreamy doggo.
With that, I leave you with several images I’ve taken of Cloud over the last year.
Cheers, friends. Please hug your creatures for me.
Doing his best Trico impersonation.
He loves his tiny creature stuffed animals. He’s never been much of a chewer; he just seems to enjoy carrying them around in his mouth.
He does interpretative dance against the walls.
He yawns aggressively at his own butt.
There’s that husky grin. :)
He takes pillows very seriously.
He likes to sneak into my spot because he knows he will net many kisses. Also, just look at his eyes!
He stares at me from other rooms like a weirdo.
He gets very into YouTube.
Someone recently pointed out to me that he looks like John Cena and now I can’t unsee it.
One of my favorite pictures of him ever. One of his most frequent positions. And that expression. And the teeny tiny front teeth.