Cats, Kids, and Social Work

This is Ray.

He’s not too cuddly yet, prefers outdoors to indoors, and will need extra TLC. He’s a cat from a hard knock life that needs a home. I offered to provide that. We were supposed to get Ray last week, but it didn’t work out. He got a bit freaked out from the vet visit, the few minutes in the car, and the several attempts to catch him. So we let him be. No need to traumatize an already traumatized cat.

We are going to try again tomorrow. James and I will go up and spend some time with Ray, give him some food, and attempt to bring him home. I have my work cut out for me. Not sure he’s really house trained or will ever be really cuddly towards the kids. I already bought Resolve for the carpet and am prepared to search our house to figure out what corner of what closet he is hiding in.

Most people would take a cat who is cuddly, trained, and easy. I’m excited to get Ray. Every cat deserves a chance, right? I am looking forward to helping him, getting to know him and getting him used to cuddles and love. It may take a while, but I have a feeling he will get there.

I’ve always had the idyllic idea that all people – and animals – of all walks of life deserve a chance to be happy and understood. That’s why I love working with kids, to give them the best possible start in life. To provide them with opportunities for imagination, creativity and love. That’s why I’m a social worker, to empower people to speak up for themselves, to fight for what is right, and to advocate for those who can’t or don’t know how to do this. And that’s why I’m taking Ray.

Everyone deserves a chance. Especially Ray.


Walking Adventures

My usual morning routine involves a walk with James. Sometimes it is just back and forth on the porch, other times he leads me on excursions around the neighborhood.

Today began with our usual walk. We slowly made our way down the street passing sprinklers that misted our faces, saying hi to our neighbor dog, Spike, and talking about whether or not we would see Mr. Grayson, the nicest kitty cat ever, on the next street.

We turned the corner and immediately, Mr. Grayson came prancing down the sidewalk to say hello. James squealed with excitement. They made circles around each other and James pet him as Mr. Grayson brushed up against James. This lasted a good 10 minutes or so.

I coaxed the kitty cat to start walking down the street, cause I knew I wan’t getting James anywhere fast as long as the kitty cat was still around. He followed us all the way down the street walking alongside his buddy, James. James seemed to be talking to him about the things that he saw and every once in a while squealed when Mr. Grayson brushed up against him for a pet.

Mr. Grayson then plopped down on the sidewalk and arched his head back for a good pet under his chin. As I indulged Mr. Grayson with a nice chin scratch, James made himself comfortable alongside him…

I offered James a piggyback ride and told the kitty cat, “Night, night!” James and I began our journey home as he waved good bye to his friend, Mr. Grayson, babbling about his adventure all the way down the hill.

I never know where my walks will lead me when we leave the house, but we always manage to find something fascinating. What a great way to start the day!

Weekend Redemption

Saturday started as one of those days. A “mama told me there’d be days like this” kind of day.

I was tired when everyone else wasn’t. They slept when I just had some coffee. I had a garage sale and was haggled by grumpy people. James has been extra clingy – no one does it like mom, therefore mom must do it all. He hasn’t been sleeping in his bed, so that means baby arms and legs in my face all night. Miles was grumpy cause he stayed up late with his cousin. Our house was a complete disaster from getting all the stuff out to sell at the garage sale. There was pee on the couch and James spilled yogurt everywhere. Etc etc etc…

I am usually very easy going, and if one single incident had happened, it would have been no big deal. But take a sleep deprived Suzy and give her a series of incidents and you get a grumpy mom who had a crummy Saturday.

I apologized to my family for being grumpy and told them I had a really bad day. We all apologized for being grumpy to each other and went to Sonic for ice cream. Miles unbuckles, leans forward, and starts giving me a shoulder rub. He takes the head rest off to be able to give me a better one. This was my weekend redemption. The whole day simply melted away. What mattered most is this moment right now. Us together, crabby or not, one half naked baby covered in sticky yogurt goo, and all of us being kind to one another while eating our ice cream.

Life doesn’t always go as we plan it to. There will always be bad days. We can all be crabby and stressed out every once in a while. But when you share it with the people you love, they step up to the plate and help you out, whether that be with an apology, a shoulder rub, or maybe a night time cuddle before falling asleep in their own bed.