Happy Birthday, Furbaby!

It’s Monday, which means it’s time for another motherhood related post. But it’s also October, which means my furbaby is a year older.

I don’t post about her often, but this furbaby is a sometimes affectionate, sometimes feisty, mostly skittish cat named Xena (yes, after the warrior princess, except we call her warrior kitty).

When she was born 6 years ago, we thought my husband was allergic to cats and were saving up for a hypoallergenic breed. But, by the time she was 3 months and adoptable, we learned he wasn’t, as long as we never let the cat outside.

I love cats, so was ecstatic to learn we didn’t have to wait and keep saving. Our first trip to the humane society was a disappointment, though. All the kittens had already been adopted. They told us to return a few days later, though, so I did.

Xena had just turned 3 months along with a sister and two brothers. We wanted a girl and the sister was, oh, about 10 times more skittish. So, after a quick phone call to my husband, Xena became ours.

She wasn’t our first baby. There was a very short-lived fish (still no clue why he died) and a hamster (we think the cat gave her a heart attack, so sometimes feel guilty about bringing a cat home). But she was the first we got to snuggle with.

The first who slept in strange positions.

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The first who kept us up at night because we forgot toys with bells are loud at 2 in the morning.

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She’s been a true trooper since she became our furbaby. She’s traveled by car and plane. She’s lived in 4 different homes in 3 different states. She now lives about 3,000 miles away from where she was born. But, most of all, she’s survived becoming an older sister twice. Seriously, her human siblings are intrigued, but not always nice. Though they could both say kitty before mama, so I’m a little miffed at this ball of fur sometimes.

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But it’s October and it’s her birthday. We don’t know exactly when she was born, so we spend the whole month giving her extra treats.

Happy birthday, furbaby! We look forward to at least another 6 years of watching you grow up with your human brother and sister.

I promise they’ll get nicer.

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This One’s For My Cat

August has not been a kind month. It woke me up on the very first day with bad news, and bad news kept rolling in. We’re only now getting to a point where some good is being let in, but this past month has been rough.

If you’ve been a Saturday reader enjoying The Husband’s posts, be rest assured he is still alive and overworked. Eventually he will return to posting.

I had about 3 different posts I wanted to do for today. Maybe 4. But I’m so exhausted that I just can’t will myself to write them. One day I will, though. But, seeing as I’m writing this the day before it’s to be published, it’s probably not going to be today.

Instead, it’s been awhile since my pretty kitty has been front and center. With two toddlers who are constantly going after her, she deserves some love!

Without further ado, Xena, my Warrior Kitty (who can’t kill a fly, much less catch one, and prefers to hide under beds)!

An Apology to my Cat

Dearest Xena,

My fluffy baby kitty, I am sorry, but I have introduced chaos into your life. I have given you not one, but two screaming siblings.

When you first came home with me, it was just us: you, me, dad, and sister hamster. It was quiet and you got plenty of attention, treats, and petting time. You were our little baby.

We didn’t tell you you would be an older sister. We didn’t know we probably should have.

You knew before we did that something was happening, but you had no idea what changes would come with it.

My beautiful, usually graceful kitty. You patiently went through our move from Maryland to Philadelphia. You weathered a 2 week vacation to Southern California extremely well. You eventually noticed my lap was getting smaller and adjusted accordingly.

But nothing could have really prepared you for a screaming child.

One day I disappeared for 3 days and your grandma came to stay with you. Then I can back, but wasn’t the same. However, there was not yet a screaming child. Your brother had to stay in the hospital a few more days.

Then it happened. Your quiet existence was shattered with the homecoming of this small, wriggly human. There was curiosity (thought I didn’t see it, did you?), but you didn’t let this squirmy thing get in your way. You just napped next to me instead of on my lap.

For a few months, things were quiet. You weathered our move to Southern California extremely well and loved all the sun. But this babbling little human was starting to look at you. I know you were confused, but carried on, even napping beside him. I have proof, pretty kitty.

Then he got older, started crawling and walking, and he finally discovered you! Moment of truth. Would you get along?

Nope. He screamed right in your face. I’m sorry, my precious cat. Not only was this small child who stole me from you screaming in your face every day, but he also started going for your tail!

I know, I know, my little kitty, your world was turned upside down. And just when you figured out how to live with him, we introduced you to your sister!

I know you were not pleased. You made that abundantly clear while I was pregnant. But she only tries to pet you and you seem so much more patient and tolerant. Maybe you just need a sister.

But no matter what, my fluffy kitty, you are my first baby. I promise my lap will be yours again soon. And, one day, you and your siblings will figure it out. In the meantime, I still love you, my precious cat.

Love,

Mom

Is My Cat Annoyed With Me?

Before having kids, my cat was my baby. She slept for hours on my lap, kept us company at the foot of the bed, enjoyed treats more often than she should have, and could stretch out wherever she pleased. She was our little spoiled rotten princess.

Then she became a big sister. At first, it wasn’t too bad. This squirmy little baby barely knew she existed. Until he started crawling around, discovered blinking eyes at the same eye level, and screamed.

My cat hasn’t been the same since. She probably resents us for having not one, but two screaming things who think she’s a toy. Needless to say, she spends a great deal of time hiding. I don’t blame her. Her siblings can become earsplittingly loud.

But because she’s almost always hiding, I often call for her just to make sure she didn’t get locked in the closet.

Oh, you should see her! She comes running out, meowing, full of hope. Her tail is high and her eyes are big as she comes darting straight at me. I know what she wants, what she hopes for. She wants a nice warm lap, or a pet, or a snuggle, or, even better, a treat.

She must get annoyed with me when I interrupt her sleep and have nothing more to offer than a quick pet because the kids can and will descend on her.

My poor baby, I’m sorry. You must be so irritated with me.

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How Does She Sleep Like That?

For about 5 years now I have watched my cat sleep. Like all cats, Xena enjoys contorting herself, if she’s not finding the strangest hiding places.

For years, this has been her favorite sleeping position, and I always wonder, “how is that even comfortable?!” But she’s a cat, so I guess she must be comfortable.

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Until today I had a hard time getting a picture of it. She would always uncurl to glare at me for waking her up. Just trying to get a picture, cat!

But now with two small children who are fascinated by her, she doesn’t get as much sleep as she used to. Needless to say, Xena is usually tuckered out all day. Sometimes she hides and sleeps, sometimes she curls up at the top of her tree. But at least once a day I catch her sleeping on her head.

Why, cat, why?

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World Spay Day

This year World Spay Day is today! In an attempt to reduce the number of stray animals on the streets who may end up being put down in a shelter, World Spay Day was created to promote spays and neuters. So if you have a pet you don’t plan on breeding or somehow manage to catch a stray (my family has done this with 3 cats using incredible patience), take them in! Some places do this for free or at low cost today.

In honor of this day, here are some pictures of my pretty spayed kitty.

I swear, she does more than just sleep in her car tree. Sometimes she sleeps in the chair in my son’s room.

Meet My Cat

This is Xena. She has been with us for about 5 years now. She’s a bit of an oddball cat, but I love my kitty. Occasionally she will probably make an appearance. So, here she is. My beautiful cat whom we adopted in Maryland, moved to Pennsylvania, and have now permanently moved to Southern California.

 

I’ve been told cats with big ears and long tails are good at catching things. Xena has both. She isn’t. Oh well. At least she keeps the mice away.