Last night I told the boys they would have to sleep in their own beds, for once. I needed a night to stretch out and not wake up to Four’s laughter in his sleep or Eight’s elbow in my face. They took it pretty well, but not as well as Lou whom I swear I saw perk up at my announcement. Sure enough, when my bedtime came, she followed me upstairs and made a nest for herself on top of the covers between my legs. Usually she doesn’t come right away; she waits for the boys to be good and out before she ventures up to claim her spot on me, and sometimes not even then. It can be dangerous in that bed with so many spastic legs.
She is kind of like my dog. She likes to lie down near me when I am working, and she tries to get me to trip over her whenever I am cooking. I think she is hoping for scraps of fish or chicken, which she sometimes gets as a special treat in her special treat bowl, the one with the little cat face at the bottom, although the little cat ears broke off in the dishwasher.
In the evening, when it’s dark, she sits by the door of our apartment and cries to be let out. I sometimes let her explore the stairwell to get some exercise and see a bit of the outside world, ha ha. She is not very good at jumping or climbing because of something not quite right in her hips, and so she can take the stairs slowly, one at a time, but we have to help her up to the windowsill when she wants to look out. If she is desperate she will climb the radiator. Otherwise we put a chair out for her.
What she lacks in agility she makes up for in goodness. I told her once, firmly, not to climb on the kitchen table when we first got her and she never tried it again. Whenever I am starting to freak out about work she comes over to calm me down. She doesn’t realize that when I am typing furiously at my keyboard to meet a deadline, the last thing I want is a cat sitting on my hands. I try not to hurt her feelings by moving her right away.
When the boys are sick she seeks them out, and when I was having my most particularly intense of the Reiki sessions for my foot and could not relax, she came over and curled up on top of me and all of a sudden it worked. (Although I was willing to try anything, it was until then that I had my doubts about the practice.)
My initial concerns about adopting a pet were similar to my initial concerns about having a baby. Would I get sick of it after a month or two? Would I remember to feed it? Would I be capable of keeping it alive? But luckily, like offspring, animals grow on you, you start to love them and somehow they flourish under your imperfect care, and this makes you only love them more. And they love you and you love them, and so it goes, on and on. And one day you find yourself writing sappy posts on the internet about your most lovely, poorly-proportioned, clumsy cat who is just about perfect in every way, who takes your breath away just by watching the birds outside your window in the springtime, and then calls to you to help her get back down.