I’ve been a cat lover for as long as I remember.
When I was a little girl I tried to interact with a family friend’s cat, who immediately ran away from me as I vied for her attention. “Well, this isn’t fun,” my four year old self thought.
We finally got a cat of our own, Kattie, when I was seven years old. My mom took care of all the “heavy lifting;” the bills, the doctor appointments, and of course, the litter box. Kattie wasn’t as cuddly as I would have hoped, though- and it was probably because I wasn’t patient with her.
I’ve lived with a variety of cats over the years, from Kattie to Cali, and later in Boston when I helped care for Clarissa and Tuxedo. Now, at 34 years old, I decided to adopt a cat of my very own- and I’m his sole caretaker and companion.
Ollie and I have only been each other’s partners for a few days now, but he’s teaching me important lessons all of the time.
Before meeting me, he came from a hoarding situation and lived at the humane society for seven long months. It wasn’t his favorite place, and many people overlooked him because of his shy nature. However, as soon as I met him, there was something special- and I was thrilled to be able to give him a forever home.
He may have cowered away from me at first, but I understood he was scared. I didn’t know what happened to him in the past, and much like a person, he probably had every reason to shy away from unknown people. Oh, Ollie- how I relate.
Even though I’d love him to want to hop on my bed and give me affection, I know it will take him time. Thanks to Ollie, I’m learning to be even more gentle, patient, and responsible.
He’s made me think about caring for someone other than myself, and at times, care for myself even more. I’m more conscious of my home, my finances, and spending enough time with him.
We all have pain in our past, whether it’s loss, trauma, addiction, or loneliness. Cats are no different. He may be irresistibly cute, but I need to remember to respect his space, just like I would want from a person.
We’ve enjoyed sitting still together, playing with his bird toy, and exploring my townhouse. I’ve found him in unexpected places, and he’s never failed to make me laugh or smile.
Learning to care for love a little being has been one of my biggest joys, and he gives me something to look forward to every single day. I may not have any interest in having a human child, but I’m absolutely content with my beautiful fur baby.