This abandoned little kitten named Ugly was found wandering the streets, and every time people saw him they’d shy away from him because he looked ugly and sick. One man took pity on the poor thing and shared his love with Ugly, before he died in his arms.
Everyone in the apartment complex I lived in knew who Ugly was. Ugly loved three things in this world: fighting, eating garbage, and shall we say, love. The combination of these things combined with a life spent outside had their effect on Ugly.
He had only one eye, he’s also missing his ear on the same side, his left foot has appeared to have been badly broken at one time. His tail has long since been lost, leaving a tiny stump which he would constantly jerk and twist. Ugly was also covered in sores, disguising his tabby fur.
Every time someone saw Ugly there was the same reaction. “That’s one UGLY cat!!” All the children were warned not to touch him, the adults threw rocks at him, hosed him down, squirted him when he tried to come in their homes, or shut his paws in the door when he would not leave.
But Ugly always had the same response. If you turned the hose on him, he would stand there, getting soaked until you gave up and quit. If you threw things at him, he would curl his lanky body around feet in forgiveness.
Whenever he saw children, he would come running meowing frantically and bump his head against their hands, begging for their love. If you picked him up, he immediately began suckling on your shirt, or ears, whatever he could find.
One day Ugly shared his love with the neighbors huskies. They did not respond kindly, and Ugly was badly mauled. From my apartment I could hear his screams, and I tried to rush to his aid. By the time I got to where he was laying, it was apparent Ugly’s sad life was almost at an end.
Ugly lay in a wet circle, his back legs and lower back twisted grossly out of shape, a gaping tear in the white strip of fur that ran down his front. I carried him home, afraid my touch was hurting him terribly. I could hear him gasping and struggling but then then I felt a familiar tugging, sucking sensation on my ear – Ugly, in so much pain, suffering and obviously dying was trying to suckle my ear. I pulled him closer to me, and he bumped the palm of my hand with his head, then he turned his one golden eye towards me, and I could hear the distinct sound of purring.
At that moment I thought Ugly was the most beautiful, loving creature I had ever seen. Even though he was in so much pain, covered in wounds, the battle-scarred cat was only asking for one thing: a little bit of affection. Never once did he try to bite or scratch me, or run away from me. Ugly just looked up at me, trusting me to relieve his pain.
Ugly died in my arms before I could bring him inside but I sat there and held him for a long time.
Ugly taught me more about giving and compassion than a thousand books, lectures, or talk show specials ever could, and for that I will always be thankful. He had been scarred on the outside, but I was scarred on the inside, and it was time for me to move on and learn to love truly and deeply.
Many people want to be richer, more successful, well liked, beautiful, but for me, I will always try to be Ugly.
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