GH and I have a cat. She started off as my cat. I brought her home from my stint in the Peace Corps. Yes, she came home with me all the way from Central Africa. (Aside: I think it's easier to bring a cat or dog into the US from Africa than it is to bring in a banana. But that's a story for another time.) In our time together, GH has really grown to love her, and seeing as she's a total whore and adores any man, she has loved him unconditionally from the start. So now she's our cat, not just my cat.
Her name is Dinner. You see, where I lived in the Peace Corps (Gabon), some people do eat cat. Certainly no one keeps a cat as a pet; it's just another mouth to feed. I like to think that I saved her from being someone's dinner, and it makes for an interesting and fun name.
Dinner is an awesome cat. She loves people, she loves to be held and petted and brushed. She is adorable and warm and fuzzy and non-judgmental no matter what you tell her. She would be happy to sit on your lap all day if you let her. All she wants is food and love.
She's been getting the food lately, but the love has been in short supply. With all the baby prep frenzy, Dinner's needs have fallen by the wayside. My lap is rather small now, difficult for her to perch on. I feel bad that she's been neglected, especially since that will only get worse once the babies arrive. I try to spend a little time with her each day, but it doesn't always happen.
I wish that I could tell myself that she doesn't notice or doesn't mind, but it's so not true. She meows more than she used to and she follows us around in a pitiful and plaintive kind of way. I've had her for twelve years; I know that she can smell change in the air and that it makes her nervous. Just like a person, the older she gets, the more set in her ways she becomes. And her world is about to experience the biggest change that's ever come its way.
So Dinner, here's a shout-out to you. You and I have been through a lot together, and we're going to go through more. Like I keep telling you, I'm sorry I haven't given you all the love you deserve lately. I'm trying. Bear with me.
As a rather graphic illustration of just how attuned Dinner is to the babies' arrival, I leave you with this story. The day our nursery furniture was delivered, the delivery guys had left and I was in the twins' room cleaning some things up and admiring the new goods. Dinner strolled by, stuck her head in the room, looked around, walked out, and threw up right outside the door. She then looked at me with disdain and strolled back into the living room.
Yeah, she knows. And I love her for it. Dinner, you're the best.