Tag Archives: cats

Horrible Mother of the Year

I gave away my children’s beloved cats. I know. I have lost the sympathy vote.

I can’t believe it.

Turns out I’m allergic to cats. Swollen eyes, constant cough, head ache.

So this past weekend the two puddy tats went across the street to live with a woman and her two children. I hope they will be a happy.

“I think they’re going to take it better than you,” the woman said kindly as tears leaked from my eyes.

At home, my children sit bereft, emptiness where their Darwin and Snowflake should be.

I fear their loss will be their Rosebud.

I am particularly upset because they were great pets. They gave back. They snuggled and were amusing and entertaining. Yes, their poos stunk to high heaven but they didn’t need to be walked!

So every night for the past two months I have lain awake trying to figure out a way not to be allergic. I have vacuumed constantly, I have taken pills, I have shut doors to my bedroom and office. I have meditated. It’s mind over matter, I told myself. I even bought an air filter.  And still every morning for the past two months I have woken with golf balls for eyes.

Sometimes you just can’t think yourself out of a problem.

And then in a moment of cosmic weirdness, last night I rented the video of CATS. I don’t know why. I had been meaning to show it to my kids and I just did it. And we watched as each character metamorphosed into our departed pets. By the end I was a molten mixture of snot and tears, my children on each side of me patting me on the head.

People say they’ll get over it. Children do. But I have a feeling I won’t. Not so easily. Because I’m old enough to know that it won’t happen again like this, this mixture of two perfect cats, time and space to enjoy them, and mom taking care of business (ie. cleaning the litter box). It was perfect pet heaven and I blew it.

Now I can add to my long list of envies: parents who are not allergic to cats.

T’is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all, wrote Tennyson.

But when I look at my children’s sad faces I’m not so sure that’s true.

photo by fragmented (flickr)


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Shoot Me

Well, they’re here. Our Christmas kittens.

I had been strenuously avoiding getting a cat or dog. Too much pet for me. All that caring, and feeding, and walking, and just worrying about.

As a writer I am always yearning for space and solitude and no responsibilities so that I can get something, anything down on paper.

So we’ve worked our way through a range of noncommittal pets: gold fish, hamsters, robot dogs, budgies in cages. Pets that are contained and do not require too much of my wildly divided attention.

But nothing satisfied our daughter.

She needed something to cuddle.

And she’s about to turn 11. Her childhood is passing before our very eyes.

Oh, the guilt!

So I finally broke down.

But I said to my husband, this is your thing. I’m already taking care of the damn budgies. This is your enchilada.

And so he made the calls and arranged everything.

This past weekend we didn’t tell the children where we were going. We told them they were being dragged to yet another art gallery by their mother. They were just thrilled.

Oh, the fabulous look on their faces when we walked into Cat Protection, the cat adoption place in Archway.

Naturally, we had just missed a huge selection and all that were left was a very noisy Siamese and a pair of young tabbies which couldn’t be separated.

Ah, well, I thought, relieved. Too bad. We’ll come back later (maybe in a couple of decades…) when the stock has been refilled.

Um, yes, we now have two tabbies.

Darwin and Snowflake.

They came home yesterday to stay. Got named. Nosed around the kitchen. Chased each other’s tails. Plunked themselves in our laps.

And I must say, for a flea-ridden set of more responsibility, they’re awfully cute…

photo by Merlijn Hoek (flickr)


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