Onyx: One Exotic-Looking, Black Cat.

For two or three days, we called him Charlie or Simon as his given name, Onyx felt awkward to us because even though we knew certain things about him, we didn’t really know him.

Like every cat lover on the face of the planet, we called upon our cat friends to check him out and to suggest names. While all of that was going on, Charlie/Simon/Onyx collected a couple of nicknames: Ignatz and Rugrat being the two that stuck.

My niece liked Charlie and for a while we thought that might be it … until two of my friends added their comments.

how about Egypt?  he looks like one of the cats from that time…
or Ben.  I like Ben.” 

“He looks mischievous and mysterious at the same time. One of the girls suggested Houdini, but I’m sure we’ll come up with others.”

“I think you should keep the name…When I enlarge the photo I can see his striped legs – sort of a “reverse Pippi” (as in Longstocking, who had red-and-white striped legs, while Onyx’s are black/grey).  Yes, his whiskers should grow back.  Did he singe them?  How old is he? “

In the flurry of back-and-forth email exchanges came the most insightful comment of all from my friend who voted that we not change his name.

“Onyx – funny that many of your pets have names of precious stones or minerals – Diamond, Jasper, Onyx. Maybe he should keep that name! He’s very exotic-looking. Interesting cat.”

Suddenly, the name that didn’t quite seem to fit when we first met him, felt right. When I checked out the significance of the actual Onyx stone, I found out that it can help release negative emotions such as sorrow and grief. Onyx jewelry is worn to defend against negativity that is directed at you and, black stones have protective energies in the sense that black is the absence of light, and therefore, can be used to create invisibility.

I’m not sure I agree that sorrow and grief are negative emotions. We need to feel both and to do the work of coming to grips with them because our lives are about finding that balance between what’s hard and what’s joyful.

Onyx came into our lives from the sorrow and grief of losing William, our six year old brown tabby cat. What wonderful serendipity that his given name was telling us to choose him.  Add to this the interesting comment that we have a history of choosing the names of precious stones or minerals as names for the dogs and cats that we’ve lived with over the years.

This is the value of friendship. The people in your lives who know you the best often see what you might not: the things that should be as plain as the nose on your face.  [gplus count=”true” size=”Medium” ]





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