Tuesday, January 25, 2011

ode to pets

Kevin and I were married 9 months when we got our first cat, Maela.  We hadn't planned on her arrival (hmm that seems to be a theme with us) but I was in a plant store with my mom, and there was a box of kittens.  She was this precious ball of gray with green eyes, a tiny meow and huge ears.  I've always had an affection for big ears.  I called Kevin, expecting him to ask if I was crazy, we had a tiny apartment, why would we get a cat.

But in Kevin-style, he said, "Whatever you want to do Bumpie.  Get her if you want."

She was snuggling on my shoulder, she was officially my baby.

A few months later we added another baby, an adult dog named Tanner.  He was the dog my husband always wanted, who didn't grow up with pets.  Tan and Maela would sleep the day away, then snuggle with us at night.  They brought us much joy.

Tannie died from bone cancer when Taylor was a baby, and we cried buckets.  The night before we brought him into the vet, we stayed up all night snuggling with him in front of the fireplace on the pull-out couch, crying and laughing over memories.

It's really an interesting thing, how one can grieve so deeply over the loss of a pet, but still desire to have them.  I grew up with 2 cats, a dog, a bunny, a guinea pig, hamsters, lobsters, fish.  With the exception of the fish, who I can never properly bond with, I cried when all of these pets died.  But I still want pets in my life.

I think it's a good life lesson for the girls also.  Although, Bailey has taken Tanner's death hard and she was only 2 when he died.  She can't possibly really remember him, but she cries for him still sometimes.    Sometimes it's genuine, she sees the pics or video, and wishes he was here.

Other times it's drama like this -- I was disciplining Bailey, and she was crying and waving her hands at the ceiling.  I said, Bailey, what on EARTH are you doing?!  She replied, "I'm waving to Tanner, Grandpa and Jesus - one day they're going to rescue me from this mess!"

You gotta love her.

In October for the girls birthdays, we adopted 2 more cats whom they named Oreo and Cocoa.  They have added a lot of life and a lot of stink to this house.  They are mostly sweet with the girls, especially Cocoa who just plays dead and goes along with the dress-up and shows he is made to put on with the girls.

They have ripped up the ends of my couches, they have shredded the carpet (who cares, good riddance, one carpet fiber at a time), they have increased our expenses,  they have upped our wake-up time (well, Kevin's thankfully) because they want fed.  I am actually allergic to cats and although they have short-hair, I've had to take meds more often.

But we love them so much.  They just add a softness to our family.  There's nothing like laying down to watch tv and have a warm, purring cat curled up on your lap to make you feel content.

So if you didn't realize it by now, I'm pro-cat.

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