Saturday, May 29, 2010
Daughter Leaves Home… Daughter Returns and She's Not Alone
I was relieved when The Apprentice asked if she could move back home; she couldn’t afford to get a place of her own and was stuck living in a relationship with someone she didn’t love. Having her at home meant I would be less stressed; I worried about her day and night.
We were all looking forward to the strange and amusing things she said. Like the time she tried to make Mr T feel better about his baldness by telling him he wasn’t bald, he just had a large forehead. Or calling me after she drove to her home in the western suburbs to tell me she had the sun in her eyes the entire time and that they really should think about where they put suburbs.
What I wasn’t looking forward to were the two young felines she’d adopted during her time living away from home. I’d never imagined the stress that two young cats would create for me.
It’s been a long time since I lived with a cat, so I’ve grown used to not having to brush cat hair off my clothes, the couch, the curtains … my food! How on earth do cats escape baldness after continuously shedding copious amounts of hair?
I’ve now gone from child locks on cupboards to keep Miss Flora out of everything to chasing two thieving felines – that have absolutely no respect for authority – off of the kitchen table and benches.
Just when I thought the feline felons were learning their place and my stress levels were dropping, the youngest one developed diarrhea, which wouldn’t have been a problem if he’d made it to the litter tray in time. At least he was on the floor and not jumping on my kitchen bench when it happened.
The vet prescribed cooked chicken breast to remedy the foul, feline frustration. Thankfully, the health department never has a need to inspect our freezer, or they’d be asking me to explain why I have several packages labelled ‘CAT’. Obviously it is for the cat, but it could be misconstrued when it’s next to packages labelled ‘BEEF’, ‘LAMB’ and ‘CHICKEN’.
With the diarrhea cured and the disobedient furballs finally learning their place is on the floor (we’re still working on the lack of respect for authority), I started to relax … maybe a little too soon. The Apprentice sends me an sms while she’s at the vet with one of the cats. ‘Urgent! Don’t let kids touch cat. Will explain later’.
I lock the other cat in the laundry with the litter tray, food and water, wash the kids’ hands and then wonder what exotic disease has found its way into our home on the back of The Apprentice’s cats. By the time The Apprentice arrives home I’ve researched every possible cat disease and am still no wiser.
‘They have ringworm,’ announces The Apprentice.
Ringworm I can handle, but trying to keep three children aged between 1 and 4 from touching the cats until the ringworm is eradicated is a whole new stress.
‘Don’t touch the cat!’ ‘Did you touch the cat? Wash your hands.’ ‘Leave the cat alone.’ ‘Wash your hands.’ ‘I told you not to touch the cat.’ ‘No! Don’t touch the cat.’ ‘Aaaaarrrggghhhh!!!!!’
Two weeks later, the ringworm is gone, the cats are too terrified of the consequences to even consider jumping on the kitchen table and the kids have learnt to ask before touching the cat. Despite the hair, poo and total disrespect for authority, the youngest feline does a good job at entertaining us each night as he races from one end of the lounge room to the other like a greyhound lure on amphetamines. If he only knew the irony when he chases a cursor about the computer screen; a cursor controlled by a mouse!
Just as I relax and think to myself, ‘at least The Apprentice didn’t have any children while she was living away from home,’ the hyperactive kitten starts to entertain himself by hooking poo out of the litter box and batting it around the floor. Maybe a couple of grandkids wouldn’t have been so bad after all.