By Julia Williams
“Like a kid on Christmas morning” doesn’t even begin to describe how I felt waiting for the Fedex guy to show up with a package the other day. I got up extra early, because I knew I’d have to sign for the package and I didn’t want to be in the shower when he arrived. Overkill, yes – but I wasn’t taking any chances on missing this delivery! As it happened, he didn’t arrive until nearly 4 p.m., and by then I was ready to crawl out of my skin. Have I mentioned that patience is not one of my virtues? LOL.
I carefully opened the big box so as not to damage the precious cargo within. One look…and I was smitten. My smile was so wide I could have eaten a banana sideways. Maybe even two bananas! So what was in there that had me so ecstatic?
It was a painting of my sweet girl kitty, Annabelle, and it was even more beautiful than I knew it would be! This was something I’d wanted to do for some time. My relationship with Annabelle is just so extraordinary that I wanted something to treasure forever. She’s almost ten years old, and though I hope to have at least ten more years with this special one-in-a-million kitty, we just never know how long we’ll have with those we hold dear.
|The photo Sue used|
I’ve never loved a cat so deeply and completely as Annabelle, and I’ve never felt so loved in return. I wanted a way to honor the beauty of our unique relationship while she’s here, as well as a way to keep her memory alive once she’s gone. To be sure, she will live in my heart for all time, but I think this painting will be a wonderful way to keep the connection strong.
I chose artist Sue Hains after seeing a photo on Facebook of another pet portrait she’d done. It was of Gwen Cooper’s Homer the Blind Wonder Cat, and it perfectly captured his personality. I looked at the other portraits of cats, dogs, horses and birds on Sue’s website, and I just knew she would do a great job. We exchanged several emails and then I had the difficult task of deciding which photo to send Sue. In the end, I chose one that I loved for the sweet, soft expression on Belle’s face.