Lessons My Cat Has Taught Me: Number 1—It’s A Good Thing You Didn’t Have Kids

Selfie with kitten.

I’ve been sick for the last several days and have been spending most of my time in bed. Very not exciting. Since there aren’t any new photographs to post, I thought I’d share some of my thoughts about being in a relationship with my kitten Loki.

Yes, it’s a relationship. One that is already teaching me a lot.

Lesson 1: It’s a good thing I never had children.

Loki has shown me that not only do I not have the patience of a saint, I have hardly any patience at all. It doesn’t take much to get me really irritated; and, let’s face it, kittens are constantly doing irritating things.

I dread to think the emotional scars I would have left on a small child with the language I use when I get aggravated with the kitten. I call him names. I cast aspersions on his intelligence, his ability to listen. I threaten him with excommunication. I curse like a sailor. I say things like:

“Don’t make me come over there!”
“What part of ‘no!’ don’t you understand?”

…basically, every evil, no-good bit of parenting language ever. And there’s a remarkable amount of yelling.

I am relieved that, at least, I do not resort to corporal punishment or the withholding of nourishment.

But let’s face it, there’s no more reasoning with a kitten than with an infant or a young toddler. All you can do is try to entertain them, keep them out of trouble, make sure they get enough to eat, and give them some affection. You’ve gotta be patient with them, because they have a really limited toolset and most of what they do they do by instinct.

As with babies, it’s a good thing kittens are cute as heck, because otherwise their survival rate would drop radically. The thing of it is, I’m one of those people who don’t think babies are all that cute. Good thing I never had one, right?

Which is worse: changing diapers or cleaning a litter box (and the misses) endlessly? Being woken by a crying baby or a crying kitten?

If I can barely cope with the responsibility of looking out for a mostly self-sufficient furchild, I would surely have gone batshit crazy under the burden of caring for a baby human. As it is, I chafe at the notion that I can no longer stay out all hours or pick up and travel at the drop of a hat.

And yet. Literally as I’m writing this, Loki has climbed into my lap, settled in, and lifted his pointy little face to mine for cheek rubs and kisses. He is purring and the warmth from his soft little muscly body is spreading all the way to my heart.


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2 Responses to Lessons My Cat Has Taught Me: Number 1—It’s A Good Thing You Didn’t Have Kids
  1. Dale Favier
    October 13, 2013 | 12:39 am

    :-) Actually it sounds very like having kids.

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