Hello, Kitty … to stay, perhaps? (Plus briefs)

Those who’ve been reading the blog for a while know that our first attempt to adopt a new kitty – after the sad demise of 15 year old Watson when Lily was 3 months old – didn’t go so well. Lily was terrified of both cats and dogs at the time, and when we visited with a gentle old cat at the Humane Society, one on one, in February, Lily let out a piercing scream that sent volunteers running to check in on us.

Good times.

Since then, Lily, though still skittish, has gotten braver about petting dogs and cats, once she feels they’re not threatening. She’s still not wild about them looking her in the eye and approaching her; but if they’re settled somewhere, and she can gently pet their back or their ears, she really enjoys herself.

So two weekends ago, when we read about a nearby animal hospital that acted as one of several satellite cat adoption centers for the Humane Society, we stopped in to try again.

They mostly had very young kittens, which we aren’t so interested in – they’re nippy, and while this is done in a playful way, Lily would never understand the difference – but they also had an all-black five month old, who was very sweet and affectionate. Lily liked interacting with him on her own terms, though she still got nervous when he walked up and tried to rub himself against her legs, or stared at her.

But Joe fell in love, and the cat did seem a good fit for us. We thought it best, though, to bring Lily for another visit before taking the step of bringing him home – hoping in that time that we’d prepare things around the house a little in the interim as well. Continue reading

Advertisements

Standing on the outer banks of the Mommy sisterhood

I was working remotely from a Panera near my home on a recent Friday morning when I experienced what is now a semi-regular occurrence.

Near my table, there was a gathering of about eight 30- and 40-something women, sipping hot drinks and chatting about the start of school, their kids’ fashion choices and recent adventures, home repair issues, etc.

In this moment, I felt both an intense desire to walk up, introduce myself, and gently weave my way into this warm, cozy community of mothers; and a profound sense of relief that I was not a part of this gathering, for fear that I’d inevitably obsess over my own approach to motherhood while listening to others’ accounts.

I’ve been afflicted with this push-pull duality since Lily arrived in our lives, and I’m not exactly sure what to make of it. When I read an acquaintance’s book about her first months as a mother – Vicki Glembocki‘s funny, fabulous, brutally honest memoir, “The Second Nine Months” – I was struck by a detail she included about practically mowing down other new or soon-to-be mothers who were out and about in public places, so anxious was she to find “mommy friends.” But I had done the opposite, nearly sprinting from a place when I saw a line-up of strollers. Continue reading