Time and time again, the cat hurts the only person who really likes her. Sure, her solo admirer sometimes pets her a little too hard, and one time he fell over on top of her in his effort to show his undying love. He means well, but she is unforgiving and damaged and persists in hissing and running from him.
Yesterday, the sweet boy was in the living room, behind a baby gate when the cat decided to taunt him from the other side. I watched from a beanbag chair nearby, feeling a false sense of security, thanks to the gate. They are safe from each other, I mused, as the cat laid down against the white, metal bars letting her full tail rest on our side of the gate. Every so often, she flicked her tail as she purred and cleaned her thick fur.
It was too much to resist, that big, juicy tail moving like a beautiful, wild creature independent from the lazy, mean cat. The boy toddled over to the gate, grabbed her tail with one hand and then reached through the bars to pet her fat tummy. In an instant, she was furious at the violation of her space, she hissed and swatted at his hand with all of the evil she could muster. There was an audible thwap as her furry paw connected with his hand.
Bad Cat 1: Baby Boy 0
She definitely set him up for a swat or worse, depending on her foul mood. Fortunately, the boy was left unharmed but confused and upset that his furry friend didn’t want to play, like ever. It was his first rejection and it hurt me to watch.
As I tried to help him understand what happened, he lost interest and turned to knock over a stack of blocks and chase his ball, already over it. Meanwhile, his poor mama was left to stew on the future when there will be real pain, rejections and undying, unrequited love and just how in the world to make it all ok.