Monday, September 11, 2017

So, It Turns Out I Might Actually Be a Cat Lady

What I came home to the other day.

About five years ago, when this blog was young and I only had one cat, who was also young, someone called me a cat lady. I felt the need to rebutt this accusation with a list of reasons why I’m not a cat lady.

But, despite what every single one of my former romantic partners, my current romantic partner, my mother, and my friends believe, I am not afraid to admit when I’m wrong. Mistakes were made, new information has emerged, and it turns out I might actually be a cat lady. Here’s why.

I Didn’t Want the Cat, Except I Actually Secretly Wanted the Cat

When I first got Fatty aka Shoe aka El Gato Terrible1, I didn’t really want him. He was a gift. You know how they say you should never give animals as gifts? Yeah, you should never do that. I felt very put-upon about it at the time, to the point where I even made arrangements to give the cat away, but then I backed out of those arrangements at the last minute, because I’d already gotten too attached.

How could I not?

I Stopped Letting the Cat Out, Because I Worried About Him Too Much

When I first got Fatty, I used to let him out. I live in the country, on a dead-end dirt road, so I figured it was probably fine. Fatty is confident in his ability to bite the sh*t out of anything that might cause trouble for him. But after letting him out several times, I realized that I couldn’t do it anymore; I would have to hold him hostage inside the house. Why? Because every time I let him out, I would just sit and worry about what could happen to him out there until he finally came back. There are hawks, coyotes, and rednecks out there. Also, I have a diagnosed anxiety disorder, which may have had something to do with it, but who needs prescription medication when you can just deny a living thing its freedom?

But, five years later, Fatty hasn’t given up hope. He still asks to go out every day, sitting at the door and scratching it furiously. He tries, often successfully, to slip out when we open the door. When I realized he knew how to open the screen door, I started leaving the main door open with the screen door locked, just to laugh at him when he keeps pushing the handle and getting more and more frustrated.

Recently, the manfriend looked down at Fatty waiting to make a break for it when he opened the door and said, “Fatty, when have you ever been allowed to go out?” and I had to say, “Well, actually…”

Fatty has the heart of an explorer, as opposed to his brother, who has the heart of a Jello mold. Which brings me to…

I Have Multiple Cats

I had to get a second cat to give Fatty someone else to bite instead of me. Don’t get me wrong; he still bites me, but at least he no longer sneaks up behind me to jump up, sink his claws and teeth into my butt cheek, and hang there.

I had to get a third cat because three cats is the perfect amount of cats. With three cats, there’s always a cat asking for cuddles when you feel like cuddling one.

I Spoil Them, Too

My cats have a cat tree that’s bigger than some apartments I’ve lived in. I screened in my back porch so they could go out there and sniff the breeze. They drink from a cat fountain that provides filtered water, or at least it would if I bought more of the filters. I give them treats every night. I bought them a feeder puzzle just in case their normal food dish was too boring. I spend more money on their medical care than I do on my own, which I thought was normal until I discovered that some people never take their cats to the vet at all. I buy them Christmas presents. I have even taken them out for walks, although this gives Max panic attacks and I get the sh*t bitten out of me every time I try to put Fatty in his harness, which is actually a dog harness because that’s how big he is.

One of My Cats Died, and I Made a Tombstone for It

1. I don't speak Spanish, but he does.