Last year, I celebrated Labor Day by mentioning Naoto’s hardworking spirit. While that is important, Labor Day has another special meaning around here. It is the day we got Presley.
Seven years ago today, our friend Bonnie gave us a tiny, scared, stray kitten that had been born in her barn. Bonnie didn’t ask us if we wanted a cat…she knew we needed a cat. The first few weeks were rough. Presley was (is) quite a handful. She didn’t want to cuddle. She hid out most of the time. She didn’t really like us. She only sat on my lap when I went to the bathroom. (Weird!) For those first few weeks, Naoto and I considered giving her back. We didn’t feel like she was happy, and we weren’t sure if we were truly cat people. (I had cats growing up, but Naoto never really had pets.) We didn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings (especially Presley’s), so we mustered through. And gradually, we all got used to each other. Presley started coming around more, cuddling more, playing more. Naoto and I accepted our roles in care taking. (I told Naoto that ANY woman should not scoop the litter box, not just pregnant women. By the time he learned the truth, he was so used to scooping the box, he’d accepted it as his job for life.) We started accepting the fact that cat hair is forever.Now we cannot imagine our lives without this little beast. Presley is still a little wild and she’s terrible with guests (oh, if only they would just leave her alone!) But with us, she’s sweet and charming and only misbehaves if she feels she’s lacking attention and play time. Since I’m home more, Presley has become “my” cat, often favoring me over Naoto. (It’s okay, because most people favor him over me.) She spends time at my feet or napping nearby on her scratching box. We play mid-day fetch and chase each other around the apartment. We open the mail together in the condo hallway. She comes to bed with me and sleeps at my feet at night and wakes me up with creepy stares in the morning. (Sometimes I do wonder if she’s planning to kill me.)