Monday, August 4, 2008


It's nearly 4am and I'm still awake. Among the many other thoughts that are spinning through my head tonight is the one that Tiny has not been sleeping next to me as usual. Our smoky blue tabby is a night-time fixture on our bed, so much so that I can't sleep unless I'm been bullied by her to give her more space. I am used to that convoluted position where I have to curl my legs towards Zakir's side of the bed, tightly sandwiched between my husband and the cat that seeks affection only at night. Well, she's not on the bed. She's not in the kids' rooms, or their closets. Believe me, I was upstairs after midnight, checking them all, trying not to wake the kids in the process. Hmm, that reminds me, Safa's door is really creaky, I need to remember to oil the hinges in the morning. Tiny wasn't at the outside door the countless times I've checked, and that's unusual. She comes in at night, and never really roams far. This evening she was examining the new stairs that have been built outside, with what seemed like a certain degree of approval. I caught both the cats having a social moment sitting at the bottom of the steps. That was just a few hours before bedtime. Right now, unless she's still stuck in some deep crevice of a closet (that's happened before), she's unaccounted for. If this were Sammy, well, I wouldn't be so anxious. He's mostly indoors at night, but he likes to roam outside, particularly if it's a mild night after a very hot day. Plus he's got street smarts. Tiny doesn't. She's really not the brightest star in the sky, to put it delicately. She doesn't have typical cat instincts to run if she senses danger. She'll just prickle her fur and sit there, believing she's strong enough to take on any challenge.

As I am up, worrying about her among numerous other small issues that have kept me awake, chances are she'll walk in the door in the morning, only to be given a paternalistic swat on the head by Sammy. He doesn't approve her of being out at night either, and has been known to chide her if she does stay out. He actually got up off his perch on the sheepskin rug at the foot of our bed a few moments before I did, I know he's wondering where she is. Plus, he can sense my anxiety.

Why did I get talked into getting a cat seven years ago when our neighbor's cat had kittens? That's when Sammy became part of the family. Why did I ever let the kids convince me that Sammy needed a companion? Enter Tiny, 4 years later, the brainless cat, the one that keeps me up at night. Pets are supposed to comfort you, keep your blood pressure down, but here I am, an insomniac, at 4 o'clock in the morning, still waiting for that elusive sleep to come, longing for the comfort of my cat shoving and pushing me farther into the center of the bed, taking up my space to make more for herself.

This is just one more reason to say a firm "no" to the kids, who have been begging me to adopt an adult cat we saw the other day that has been in a shelter for months. I too, I admit, felt the pull of a cat that begged us to rescue her. But hopefully Charm will find another home, I can't handle another cat, if it means more sleepless nights.

I hope Tiny's at the door when daylight comes; we'll be having the "you're grounded for life, young lady!" conversation one more time.


Amyacl said...

As a fellow cat person, I know that feeling of worry when one of your furry family members is not accounted for. I hope that your prodigal kitty is safely home by now, and that you'll get a better night's sleep tonight!

The Portas said...

Did tiny come back? I hope so!!! Thinking about you...

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