Sunday, January 30, 2011

To Bea or not to Bea

The visit to the vet was uneventful, other than Beatrice found the rectal thermometer rather undignified. But they seem okay. And thanks to the six-week trial vet insurance we got with the adoption, we saved about $100 in fees.

It's so strange having pets again. As much time as Smokey took because of his diabetes and his grumpy old man behaviours and needs, these kittens are taking a lot more of my mental and emotional energy. Mostly, I'm concerned about their socialization and trust. The past week and a half has been devoted to being with them and getting them used to me and learning to associate me with happy things, like food. Hell, I missed two dance classes over it.

Makes me remember getting Smokey and Jerry when I was 10. They were young and helpless, and I bonded to them immediately. I started fretting early on about the day they would grow old and die. I loved them so much I couldn't bear the knowledge I'd outlive them. Haven't gotten there with Sprinkles and Beatrice yet. Reason being, they haven't been as receptive to the love. They're older kittens, about 16 weeks as it turns out, and they likely missed many important weeks of socialization.

Kind of a fascinating thing. We bond so easily to living creatures that look like they need us, but it really takes more than a sweet face or their acceptance of our comfort to nurture love. It takes knowing that your affection is welcomed and reciprocated. They're still reacting from fear, though it's lessening every day. I don't think we'll really truly bond until they let go of their fear and start to really trust us, giving us the benefit of their kitty doubt that we have good intentions.

I have a lot of patience for this sort of thing. I'll wait them out, earn their trust and then have the satisfaction of loving them so much I'll dread losing them. What a reward for really loving someone, eh?

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