About a year ago, my son Garrett asked for a kitten for his birthday. My husband Mark and I tried to brush him off with replies like "we will see", "maybe", and "aren't the two dogs enough"? We also tried telling him that Mom and Dad are allergic to cats (this is true, by the way) and even asked him what happens if our dogs want to eat the kitten? Nothing seemed to work and our persistent son won out. But as Garrett's birthday (May 12th) started quickly approaching, I found myself regretting the decision even more. I've never really considered myself a cat person and just don't really like them. You can't take cats for a walk or hike, or to the lake to swim and when you call them, they often don't come. I haven't met too many friendly cats either. What's their draw? I decided that cats were just not for me. The sneezing when I was in the same room with one made this decision even easier.
But I had to follow through on my word to Garrett. A few weeks ago, I connected with a great organization called Pet Tail's Rescue. They recently drove a big van to South Carolina and brought back 13 dogs and 13 cats from a high kill shelter. I let Garrett have the day off from school and we went to visit one of these little kittens to see if this was going to be Garrett's new life-long playmate.
It took me less than 5 minutes to not only fall in love with the boy kitten that Garrett picked, but also his sweet sister. We drove away that afternoon with not just one kitten, but two sweet, playful little kittens. Since that day, they both continue to melt my heart. I smile every time I see them, laugh at how they play and soften when I see them sleep.
It's so easy to decide that we are one way or another or that we fit into a fixed type (cat people or dog people). It's so easy to decide that we don't have to open our heart to people, places, things and circumstances. After all, protecting ourselves and our heart is the safe thing to do, right? Felix and Fiona, two little beings that I couldn't have possibly imagined in my life a year ago, reminded me what comes from an open mind and an open heart. It feels really good to love these little beings. It feels open and expansive and so much better than not loving all cats at all. And so far, our allergies have not kicked up (crossing my fingers that is stays that way).