Friday morning brought a bit of drama to our household. Our cat, Katie, was pregnant and we'd been waiting for the babies to show up. Since she looked ready to explode the last few weeks, we knew the kitties' birth was imminent. (This is the proud Mama up above).
Well, one little kitty showed up at approximately 9 a.m. And then we waited. And waited some more. Katie came and entwined herself around my legs, meowing and wanting to eat. I thought, "Surely there's more than one in there!" But no other kittens were forthcoming.
Being who I am, I researched this rather unusual phenomena on the internet. Turns out a cat can be in birth for several hours. But by that evening, I grew frantic. I could feel the babies still moving in Katie's tummy, but she didn't appear to be in any hurry to push them out. After a call to the vet, they said they could either do an ultrasound or an X-ray to see what was going on, or I could just keep a close eye on her. I opted for the latter.
At about 9 p.m., Katie strolled upstairs and lay on my lap. Those of you who know me well will find this a feat in itself since I am not a cat person - not only am I allergic, but their claws have appeared in my dreams on more than one occasion - and not in a good way. But this cat has wormed her way into my heart (probably because she is an excellent mouser and very affectionate) . Fortunately, my allergies don't bother me with her anymore.
Katie promptly went to sleep on my lap and I felt her babies rolling around and kicking inside her. And still, she had no urge to go into labor. She dutifully took care of her other kitten and we just decided to let her take her time.
By the next morning, she still hadn't had them. I thought for sure she would have taken advantage of the quiet in the house during the night to pop out the rest. But no. In her typical unique Katie fashion, she waited. About an hour after I got up, I discovered another kitty had been born. And probably three hours later, two more came. We now have four adorable kitties and I'm almost ashamed to say we're all gaga over them. Why? Because we've always been staunch dog lovers. We have three monstrous dogs in the backyard outside. But this cat is special. (And don't worry! The cat is getting fixed after this! No need to add to the over-population.)
She's a good mom - all four babies are doing well. But Katie has a voracious appetite and has been eating quite a bit. I've indulged her. I know what it's like to give birth to one child - I can't imagine four. Animals amaze me - they can give birth all on their own - no human interference needed. :-)
In addition to the cat drama on Friday, I had a burst of inspiration for a new novel. Since it was the dead of night, I had to get up and write it all down, and now I can't wait to start researching. It's not WWII, even, but takes place in contemporary Italy. The problem? I'm worried I can't pull it off. Not the story so much as the whole Italian atmosphere. I want to get it right. After reading Peter Mayle's novel, A Good Year, I felt like I was right in Provence, France. And of course, he can write about Provence so well because he lives there. How am I ever going to write so eloquently about Italy? More on this topic later this week...
Also got back to editing the novel and it felt great. I'm hoping to be done with it by the end of April, if not sooner.