He always listened, he never talked back and he loved me unconditionally. His name was Simon and he was my best friend. I talked to him when I had a problem and he comforted me, he helped me when I had homework and stayed with me when I was sick. We used to play for hours on end; Hide-and-Seek, Tag, house. We were united when I was 9 and he died of old age a couple of years after I got married. Though he lived with the family he knew in his heart that I was his, he was very protective of me and really didn't like my husband (or any other guy for that matter.) After dating my husband for many months Simon finally decided to sit on his lap but only if he could sit in his lap and reach one paw out and touch me. I think he was saying, "I'll tolerate you because she likes you but she's still MY person."
He's trying to blend in. "If I sit really still..."
I miss his and often think about him. "Go ahead. Rub my belly. I dare you."
A young Simon waiting for the popcorn to come flying out of the old air popper.