Our family arrived in Moses Lake in mid-June of 2014. We had traveled all the way from Central Texas. We looked forward to returning to our home state after 16 years.
My wife, Jeanne; daughter, Naomi; and son, Benjamin, drove the distance in the Chevy Captiva. I was in a separate vehicle; a large U-Haul truck with our boxy Nissan Cube in tow.
I wasn’t alone. I had the company of our two cats, Alisha and Cameron. They were right up there in the cab with me. Each had their own travel container. Cameron was placed in the larger one because he weighed 24 pounds. His mother, Alisha, was about half that size.
Our veterinarian in Texas recommended that I give pills to them while we were out on the road. This was supposed to calm them down. Unfortunately, I discovered that the medication just made the cats loopy and did little to put a damper on their yowling.
I thought about increasing the dosage but just didn’t feel comfortable doing so. Pills or no pills, it didn’t seem to matter. Alisha and Cameron ended up voicing their displeasure for almost the entire trip. I endured desperate-sounding meows over the span of five days and about 2,000 miles.
Quite honestly, I have to admit, I got used to it — somewhat like having a broken radio that was stuck on one station with music I really didn’t enjoy.
I had to learn to deal with the noise and make the best of it. I occasionally joined in just to pass the time.
Upon our arrival at the parsonage in Moses Lake we released Alisha and Cameron inside. They cautiously explored the rooms with wide eyes, unsure steps and curious noses. Today, almost three years later, they feel quite at home.
I hope they realize just how much we care about them. They are a part of the family as far as I am concerned. We wouldn’t leave them behind in Texas. That was out of the question.
Over the years, there have been situations in my life that I still do not fully understand. I have questioned God’s love for me and voiced my displeasure. I am thankful that God still loves me in spite of all the yowling.
Walter is pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church and has served as parish pastor for more than 25 years.