I gave in to the physical imperative of sleep, and slumbered until the glorious hour of six am.
Even though I had been up for about twenty hours, sleep was a long time coming last night. I would have slept even longer, and given up writing this morning, but muscle cramps and hungry cats intervened. I only wish the cats were as amenable to sleeping in as Einstein is. He did wonderfully at the Vet yesterday. I tried the Thundershirt for the first time, and it did seem to help keep him calm. He’s all current now on his shots, the Vet says he looks good and healthy, and the only big thing left is to have him neutered. Hopefully before he starts humping…everything. He was frustrated, seeing dogs that he couldn’t play with at the Vet, and I kept promising him that he could play with the two dogs my brother and sister-in-law were bringing. I had forgotten just how small their dogs were. They were…terrified. I spent the afternoon trying to keep Einstein from stepping on them. It did wear him (and me) out, and by bedtime, he was done. He’s still pretty limp this morning, right now he’s sleeping with his muzzle resting on my leg as I write. He’s the perfect writers’ dog. I wish that Mom hadn’t set her heart against having any more pets. I feel somewhat responsible for that. She had a cat, Dinky, a tiny but amazing siamese, who managed to not only survive the island wildlife, but lived a good twenty years. We had a myriad of animals growing up, the more exotic of which we tried to pass off as ‘science projects’ for school. In all those years, we never had a pet that she had chosen. I remember her once telling me that if she had a choice, she would have liked a pug nosed Persian cat. When Dinky finally died, we waited a bit, and then presented her with a grey Persian, that she named Chrissy. I worried about Mom being all alone out here, with no companionship. I know from my own experiences that pets are there for you, even when no one else is. They are the worlds finest example of unconditional love. But, alas, Chrissy did not posses the survival skills of her predecessor, and she soon disappeared. It was then that Mom decided to never giver her heart to another animal. I’ve known other people who, after losing a beloved pet, decide that they just can’t take the heartbreak of losing another. But by eliminating the possibility of pain, you also deny yourself the joy of companionship. It’s just a fact that love is always balanced by loss. But to deny yourself love for fear of loss, is to deny life itself. We are born knowing that we will someday die. Should we then not live, or love, or share the life we do have? For me, the beginning and the end may be fixed, but the story of your life is in those pages in between…and we have a choice in how that is written.
Mom’s talking watch/pendant came yesterday, and it’s really nice. She seemed to like it, it looks pretty and stylish. She got lots of compliments on it, so I think it will be fine once she gets used to it. She came out last night to find out the time, though, and I reminded her about the watch. “I don’t need it now,” she said, “I just wanted to know what time it is!” She stomped into the kitchen to get some coffee, and I retrieved the pendant from her room, placing it around her neck with a kiss. “Keep this on, Mom, and you’ll always have the time.” She gave me her best ‘what do you know’ look, and for the first time since she’s been here, took her coffee into her room. For some reason, I think she got the impression I was trying to keep her from coming out of her room at all, instead of coming all the way out at night, to check the time. So this morning, I found the watch hidden inside her night cap. We didn’t exactly get off on the right foot this morning, either. She actually slept in until seven thirty, and seemed to feel this was a bad thing. Einstein was playing, and stepped on her foot, and she kicked him. Of all things in this world, I cannot stand unnecessary cruelty towards animals. It distresses me more than I can say to see my mother behave this way. I told her, once again, that it wasn’t necessary to kick the animals whenever they come near. “Am I going to have to worry that you’re a danger to my animals?” I asked, frustrated. “Maybe you should worry about you.” She said. My glance at her said, bullshit. “They’re no threat to me, Mom.” I said. “I didn’t say they were.” She said, with that old defiance. If you murder a grown child, is it still infanticide? She’s jealous of the attention the pets get, and annoyed by the fact that I feed them before anyone else. Hopefully she will light back up when my brother and sister-in-law come back out today. She sure lit up yesterday, sitting next to my brother-in-law and playing with his leg, flirting up a storm. And I need to work on my attitude today, and not let her push my buttons. You can’t always control what gets served to you, only how you deal with it, and I know I can do better. I’m going to stick a pork loin in the slow cooker, and concentrate on catching up with family news.