This past Monday, a young woman described as “the mom of the house” became the 7th graduate of Megan’s House in yet another moving ceremony that was also filled with plenty of laughter.
As Katie spoke of healed family relationships and bid farewell to fellow residents and staffers, they in turn applauded her for the spirit she displayed in fighting addiction and helping others with their own battles. “You’re a part of this house,” one young woman told Katie, while another marveled at the “impact people like you had here.”
Yet most of the recollections started similarly, with story after story of Katie’s first question to most of the residents as they first crossed paths at Megan’s House; “Do you like cats?”
Katie’s cat Benson has become legend at the house. Many initially wondered if the mythical creature so often discussed actually existed. It turns out Benson is indeed real and as large in size and personality as described. Over the last few weeks of Katie’s stay, he actually moved into her room and quickly became the object of the residents’ affections, even some who don’t exactly describe themselves as “cat people.”
But Benson is so much more than just a pet. He was a key part of Katie’s recovery, which is why he was brought to the house when it was learned he wasn’t being properly cared for elsewhere. And he will also accompany his owner to the next stop on her journey.
Which is why it’s fitting that Katie’s departing gift to Megan’s House, a contribution to the “collage of inspiration” each graduate has added to, is an ode to cats, complete with paw prints.
“A cat has 9 lives. Furr 3 he plays. Furr 3 he strays. Furr 3 he stays.” – Signed, Katie & Benson.