It's 5:12 as I begin to write this.† I've been up since 4:33.† Well, out of bed since then.† Awake for around an hour prior to that.†
It's the cat.† The big one, not the kittens.† She's feeling needy, I think.† Fearful of being displaced by these two little
OW - Softie just jumped up onto me from the floor, using all her many claws to latch onto my right arm before landing on my chest.† Now her brother is trying to follow, but he apparently didn't take the running leap she did, so he's ended up sitting next to me and wondering if he should try walking across the keys again.† That would be NO, little man.
.......now he's just looking at me with that teeny tiny little face.† The girl is on the windowsill next to the phone, just sitting tidily as cats do, her front feet together, because deep down inside, she is a lady.
The little guy is now sniffing the pillow my laptop is resting on.† He's trying to figure out if he should attack it before it attacks him.† He bit it.† Good job.
So ANYWAY, my cat seems to be kind of freaked out about the kittens.† She creeps down into the kitchen and sniffs them if they are asleep.†
If they are awake, Scratchy (oh, these names will be the death of me) will puff up like the bad-ass guy he thinks he is and hiss at her, his tail a tiny bottle brush sticking straight up in the air.† And†Blur scurries away.†
I'd like to think it's because she has no use for the little upstart, but if that were the case, wouldn't she just look at him with a bit of contempt and then saunter away?† The scurrying tells me she's distressed.
And yes, I spend plenty of time thinking about this.
So the worst of it is at night.† She, Blur, sleeps on our bed, and this has never been an issue.† Til now.† Now, she takes forever to settle down.† She keeps licking us.† Obsessively.† It's very annoying, but I feel so bad for her at the same time that I'll let her lick my elbow as much as she needs to.† My feet - no.† I cover them up good.† And in addition to the licking - or, really, I think, eager-to-please†grooming - "please like me, please like me, look, I'll clean the microorganisms from your ankles!!† please like me!" - she will also grab at us.† With her mouth (sharp teeth) or paws (sharp claws).† She's not biting or scratching at us, either.† It's desperate clutching.† Like she's hanging on as tight as she can, or tugging on our coats, saying "don't leave me!† don't leave me!"
And I don't know how to let her know it's okay, she's still top cat in the house.
And so I do MY version of emotionally charged grooming.† I pet her firmly, from her head to her tail, about five times in a row to say "chill out, lie down, and go to sleep.† You need to stop walking all over the bed and if you walk across Bill one more time, he will probably not be happy about that.† It's the claws.† And the being woken up two hundred times per night."† And then I let her grab my hand with her (sharp) teeth and lick me obsessively a bit, and then I kind of tuck her next to me and hope she settles down at that point.
So far, she will sit still for a minute or two, but then she's pacing again.
I know things will calm down with her eventually.† It's just been a while since I've had to deal with kittens and an older cat.†
The kittens are, of course, pretty entertaining.† Scratchy has settled in and doesn't lash out if we pick him up.† He doesn't want us to make a habit of it - that's pretty clear - but he seems to realize that we're not out to hurt him.† He loves the ceiling fan in the dining room.† Loves it.† Those blades flying around up there are just calling to him.† If only he could figure out how to get at them.† He tries, though.† He hops up onto a chair (sometimes it takes a couple of tries) and then up onto the Forbidden Zone - the table.† I found him there a couple days ago, just staring at the fan blades, his eyes wide and crazed, his little body poised and ready to leap.† If only it weren't so WAY UP HIGH.† I herded him off the table and within a minute he was back up there again.† Third time he got my message and†stayed down for the rest of the day.† But yesterday he was back on there while Bill and I were eating lunch.† Scratchy needs to learn to pick his moments.† He needs to learn that hopping up on the table while the big people are there isn't really the best plan.† It's this sort of wisdom that Blur needs to impart, eventually.
(he's playing with a blueberry in the photo above)
Softie (or Softy - I can't decide.† Maybe I should ask Julia.† It's her kitten, after all.) is the more snuggly one.† She's right here next to me, just sitting.† Not even trying to drink my ice water.† She's a little more chatty, too, than Scratchy.† She says hi with her tiny, barely audible little mew, her tiny mouth wide like she's oh, so pathetic.† And she does these little chirpy "prrrrup" sounds that I'd forgotten all about - it's been so long since I've had a kitten to listen to.
She is purring now.† Maybe she knows I'm writing nicely about her.† She will probably fall asleep soon.† She has that drowsy look about her.† Her head is drooping.† Her eyes are closing.†It's only a matter of time.
My sister and her kids are coming up later today.† The kids will sleep over.† My sister will trim my kids' shaggy hair.† We'll eat.† I'm planning to make cheese, so maybe we'll do pizza.
But the main reason - probably the ONLY reason, really - is to see the kittens.
Softie's eyes are hysterical right now.† Practically rolling back in her head from kitty exhaustion.† All that playing.† She's swaying back and forth.† Any moment now she'll have to snuggle down; her tiny front legs will give way and that will be it.† She'll be down for the count.† Her brother is over there on the red chair, head on his paw, dreaming of ceiling fans.†
They're so cute.