Lady Bug

Lady Bug

Let the woolly caterpillar shimmy like a sweater-sock.

Give the stink bug his noxious due.

Just don’t call the lady an insect.

We have used “lovebug” as a common noun all our lives. Baby is a lovebug. Rashida is a lovebug. It appears irrefutable that Shaq, Jimmy Fallon, and Dolly Parton are all lovebugs.

Lovebug is more than a lovebug.

She will not scorn the honor, any more than she will complain about the minced liver in the green can, or the mixed blessings of this green earth. A little plush bear from the sweetest toy store, Lovebug checks all the boxes.

She is pleased to meet you and assumes you are quite glorious. She greets you like an old friend while making you feel young. She remembers your name even if you have forgotten to bring cream cheese. Lovebug is a lovebug.

But Lovebug is a proper noun. Lovebug is a proper lady. Lovebug is the proper pancaking of all propriety.

When you are a Lovebug, you always expect love’s arrival.

She is silly and sly, baring her belly one moment, keeping her secrets the next. Sammy exasperates and invigorates her, proof that they are true friends. The sun in the solarium transfixes Lovebug as though she were living earth’s first dawn, yet her eyes betray deep experience.

Lovebug lives with feline leukemia virus (FeLV), but she dismisses this like static and waits for her song to come on. If she knows how close she came to silence, she’ll never tell.

If she knows that Quinn’s Corner was created for her, she’s not surprised.

She loves as boldly as anyone who truly trusts. She expects big, buttery acceptance, untethered to earning.

She seems to have expected Tabby’s Place all her life. Perhaps, every time we’ve said “lovebug,” we’ve been accepting her.

But Lovebug is wider than her wingspan, more expansive than mere affection. Visit her suite,* and she’s as likely to be reading Leaves of Grass as making sweet potato pie. She may be brushing up on quantum mechanics. She may be fixing Hoopla Green‘s catalytic converter. She may be converting Sammy to a narrow sect of transcendentalism focused on full-fat dairy.

She may surprise you. This is what Lovebug, singular, loves to do.

She may get into it with Sammy, stripes and speckles blurring in a minor slapfest. Are they debating who will play the butterfly and who will play the firefly in the Quinn’s Corner pageant? Are they arguing the merits of Oram‘s Olympian obesity or Durin‘s delicate soul as they watch the boys bounce through the Quinn’s Corner lobby? Did someone get 51% of the green can of liver?

Does a cat named Lovebug owe the green earth any explanation?

She is her name and then some, and then seas more “some.” She is not the scary diagnosis that cannot frighten her. She is deliberately sloppy with her use of the word “best friend,” daubing it on as many beings as we call “love bug.”

If she must be a winged thing, Lovebug is more Icarus than insect, but with the good sense to tell the sun she’s coming. She flies with the ease of everyone who expects to be loved.

She has landed at Tabby’s Place, where even locusts and lumpy humans turn into lovebugs.

She is our Lovebug, our lovebug, and her very own lady.

*Actually, you can’t. Although she will always be our Lovebug, she is technically no longer our Lovebug, because she is love’s Lovebug. That’s right: surprising exactly no one, our little lady has been adopted! If you’re keeping track, that’s six FeLV+ adoptions in just over a month. Is anything impossible with love?

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