You came into our lives in a small way and then grew in importance. Early on we loved you, because you were beautiful. A human is designed to see beauty, you were, and so we loved you.
It did not hurt that you demanded little and gave so much. You returned affection and our veneration, dear Athena, with warmth. We did not know then, what we know now, that you would protect us from the vermin that fill our streets.
When we moved into a bad neighborhood, our house was not safe for my small children. Athena: we did not have to ask. You came, you saw, you slew. Legend said you were a mighty hunter, but when we brought you into our lives, legend became reality.
Of course, it is hard to know how to thank you, because you are here, but silent.
There are some Christians who think you are nothing and that we must ignore you. We know better, because we have lived with you in our lives for fifteen years. There is no event from Christmas to Hurricane Harvey that you have not made better, Beautiful Athena.
Others believe that you exist only for us. These evil men think we can use you to help us in any way we wish, but that forgets the beauty, goodness, and integrity of your being. You are Athena and the Almighty has given you a role and place that we did not create and so cannot take away. We dare not ignore you, destroy your niche in our ecosystem, or fail to give you what you require.
Classical antiquity worshipped you and we cannot, of course, go that far, but we love you. We do not love you as we love God or each other, but we love you more than we love pizza . . . And that is a great deal. Our offerings to you are small, because we are not great, grand folk. You have stayed with us through two states and four houses: guardian of our hearths.
You are not perfect. When Spike came into our lives, Athena, you looked at him, full of song and jollification, and hated him in your heart. Spike brought out all that was bestial in you and you waited your time. He shared his songs and his joy with us until you chewed him up. Rightly has it been said that Athena is a warrior, because you would not tolerate another.
Spike is gone and you remain.
There is no doubt you are the best cat we have ever known. Here’s hoping we have elevated you to Paradise with our love.
Your loving family,