In the summer of 2010 I had the following dream. It felt significant but I didn’t know what it meant. At the time we were in the process of selling my parents’ house to the son of the neighbors across the road (Keith). My brothers and I were standing in the front yard of my parents’ house. It felt like springtime, and the sky was a little overcast as if it might rain.
“Do you think Keith will let us dig some plants out of the back yard?” I asked. “We’ve been so busy cleaning out the house I haven’t had time to do it. But I want to move some of Mom’s garden to my yard.”
“I doubt it,” my brother John said.
“I doubt he would want them, “I said. “He is probably going to mow back there and then the plants will be all gone.”
The dream changed and we were now in my brothers’ old bedroom. This room was right inside the house from where we were standing in the yard. The atmosphere felt heavy and depressing. John leaned against the closet door. “Boy, I don’t feel very good,” he said.
I opened the door and went out into the hallway. It was much brighter out there! I heard my mother’s Siamese cat, Tam, meow. Tam died in about 1988. We had him for a very long time. My mother got him as a kitten for Christmas one year and I think he was 17 years old when he died. He loved all of us but was primarily my mother’s cat. When I heard him, I knew right away that it meant that Tam was with my mother on the other side. I looked in the doorway to my parents’ bedroom and Pinion, the little orange Hemmingway cat that I had when I was about 10, was curled up taking a nap on the chair next to the desk. She lifted her head and looked at me. I noticed her eyes were orange.
I went back into the bedroom and there was Pinion again lying on the bottom bunk bed. But she wasn’t alone. The silver chinchilla Persian I had about 20 years ago, Mr. Slick, was lying there with her. I was overcome with sadness. I lay down on the bed and was crying and petting these cats. I looked up at Mr. Slick’s face and he too had these vibrant orange eyes. I was lost in those orange eyes! Then I woke up and was confused, because in life, Mr. Slick had green eyes like all silver chinchilla Persians.
A few weeks later I had another dream on that same theme. This time it was set at the Aunt Farm (grandparents’ old house). I had an African Serval cat in the dream. I suspect the connection is that right now in waking reality I have a Savannah cat – a breed developed by crossing domestic cats with an African serval. My dream serval was playing on the floor in the living room. There were some people there – visitors – who were playing a little rough with my cat. I chewed them out and told them that if the cat injured them, not to blame me as they were being way too rough with him. They left, all offended, and I was lying on the floor hugging this cat – he too was orange and I was lying there looking deep into his orange eyes.
I had several other dreams that I don’t remember as well involving orange cats with orange eyes. I was googling all over the internet analyzing dream dictionaries for possible meanings of orange cats with orange eyes. I had a big Word document full of possible interpretations. But I was barking – or in this case meowing – up the wrong tree. I should also mention that I was not in the market for a cat at the time. I already had two – the Savannah cat and also a Bengal cat.
While the whole orange cat with orange eyes thing was going on, my husband’s prodigal son moved back to Pittsburgh. A girlfriend from Colorado followed him here and they got an apartment a few miles away from us. I was not happy about this development because this particular son tends to ruin my husband’s life when he is living nearby. After about a month they broke up and the girlfriend moved back to Colorado. We found out that while she was here she adopted a kitten from somebody she met at work. She left the kitten behind in the apartment. Bill and I had a long discussion about the fact that his son is not responsible enough to care for animals, and regardless of whether we wanted or needed a third cat we had to rescue this kitten. His son did not want the kitten.
So we went and got him – and it turns out to be an orange kitten! Like all kittens he had blue eyes at the time but as he grew his eyes changed to orange. At first I tried to encourage him be my son’s cat but he chose me as his primary companion anyway. I named him Peaches since that is what I think of when I look at his coloring.
That wasn’t the end of synchronicity either! I suspect he has healing abilities – sort of on the order of Reiki. I started a new job a few months after he moved into our home. I’d been off work for some time and it was hard to get used to getting up and commuting again. I came home the second day of the job exhausted with a splitting headache. I took a nap with Peaches and he put his paws on my forehead – in a few minutes my headache was gone. He has done this many times now. Another time I had a dream in the middle of the night – a grief dream – and woke up feeling really awful. The feeling was centered in my solar plexus. Peaches always sleeps on my pillow next to my head. As soon as I woke up he got up also, worked his way under the covers, curled up on my solar plexus, and started to purr. The awful feeling went away. Unfortunately he reserves his healing talents for me. My aspirations as manager for “Peaches the Healing Cat” were short lived.
I have often wondered about the details of the orange cat dreams and what they might reveal about Peaches’ true identity. I have a feeling I’ve had this cat before. I suspect he may be Mr. Slick come back again to lend his support at a difficult time in my life. There are many similarities between them, such as a fondness for hanging out in the bathtub and playing with the drip from the faucet, fearlessness, and being the dominant cat in the household.
I do not have any doubts that animals, just like people, go to the other side upon physical death. Many of my childhood pets visit me occasionally in dreams – an Irish Setter dog named Kelly I once had, the black cat I had when I was a toddler, and Tam – my mother’s Siamese. It is not a very long leap from there to ponder that they could return again as another animal to spend more time with us.