After years of discussion, we finally got a couple of kittens from the RSPCA on Saturday. Purely by accident, it was on a Mother’s Day weekend. Perhaps that was the reason why my reactions to them were as complex as they were. Underlying the joy and fascination of having such happy, energetic and affectionate creatures in my life, was a certain amount of sadness and regret. The kittens for me somehow signposts the true end of Plan B. I had not thought there was as large a portion of myself that still held on. Over the weekend, as I got to know the kittens and begin to love them, that part with a certain amount of pain started to let go.
Another reason could be that the last time there were two cats in my current house, I was with my ex. The cats, Kitchen and Seow-seow, were one of the few consistently happy and safe portions of my life at that time and while I don’t miss the turbulence, I am reminded of the good things too that have passed. Both the cats are now long dead. Kitchen is buried in the garden. And one of the kittens looks like a much younger version of Seow-seow although her personality is almost the opposite. Where Seow-seow was anxious and careful, Khaleesi is confident and curious.
I could write more about the cognitive dissonance between valuing these two kittens so much and the realisation of the sheer volume of kittens in the world, about how my panic over a kitten’s vomiting bout has provided me with a tiny glimpse of every parent’s predicament but I’ll leave it at this: new life, new beginnings.