Is A Return After A Long Absence Worth It?

Hey all!

It has been over 2 and a half years since I’ve even been on WordPress and I’ll admit it, it’s producing a little anxiety. What am I doing back here? They say you can never go home again, but is that my goal? So much has changed that there is no way this blog will follow the same trajectory as before. I’m a different person. I mean, an amazingly different person. But I feel like I have something to say again, something to share, a lot of things to make sense of, and I hope it’s something that interests past and new readers as I once did before.

This blog was aptly named ‘Tales of a 30-Year-Old Nothing’ at the time I created it and now I feel it could be more like ‘Tales of a 30-Something-Year-Old Something’. (Name change currently under debate in my head). When we last met I was mainly struggling through unemployment and the dreaded job search. I got a job, or 2, or 3 and switched to find struggles with nothingness, lack of motivation, uncertainty and instability, depression, this past winter on the east coast (you know what I’m talking about NE-ers), finding purpose, finding my place in life, an eventual move back to my hometown, making sense of the adult I was fighting against becoming and the adult I’m working so hard to be. It’s no pleasure cruise (but sign me up for one of those stat), and looking back knowing that there has been a 2 1/2 year gap between then and now makes me realize how little and how much growth there has been. These progressions aren’t happening over night and they have been met with resistance from my own psyche as well as other’s. The old adage 1 step forward, 2 steps back becomes a way of life and the best we can do is make sure that step forward is more of a stride. It’s the only way to get anywhere. Now don’t get me wrong, there have been many moments of contentment and happiness, times of pure elation, ecstasy, and joy that have shaped my journey. It all matters and plays a role. And really, I’m not a heavy person. Put on a cheesy 80s song (such as the one I’m listening to now) and I’ll dance to it like a lunatic. (Unfortunately, videos will not be provided).

I’m not looking back anymore. At least not to live. I will, however, take a handy-dandy time machine to certain points that I feel are important to address in hopes of achieving a deeper understanding and to share with those who are/have been stuck right along with me.

So I’ve heard starting at the very beginning is a very good place to start, and I feel it’s time to reintroduce myself to the WordPress community. I’m 33, I moved to Philadelphia within the past year after over a decade in Manhattan, and am reawakening a part of myself that has laid dormant for far too long. I’ve always loved writing but occasionally lose focus when life gets in the way. Just like working out, once you put it off a few days, months, years, what’s a few more? This time I’m committed, as I am in all aspects of my life. That is the difference. And I’m on the computer all day anyway (like the rest of us dry-eyed zombies) so what’s another hour? But why am I on the computer all day? I work in social media. It’s a glamorous life of home offices in bedrooms, neighborly door-slamming distractions, soap opera lunch breaks, and bun hairdos. My co-worker/housemate is a cat and I have a pair of Kurdish farming pants hanging on my bedroom wall to remind me of a trip to Turkey in my 20’s. My favorite color is pink and I like long walks on the beach… (wait, just kidding, that last bit is not at all true). Most importantly, I’m navigating through a series of mazes and obstacles on my way to living the life I want and know I deserve. We can do it with a little help, determination, time, and a very well-timed bet that a friend jokingly proposes but you take on with extreme gusto.

-xo

The Quicker Picker-Upper

I can now cross zoo keeper off my list of possible new careers.

My previous posts have chronicled the past week of dog-sitting at my parent’s house for their 13-year-old, diabetic Westie. I love him, I do. We got Baillie while I was still in high school and he’s super sweet. But his age and health have become factors that I’m not very used to as a strict cat owner. My cat, Simon, isn’t anywhere near as labor intensive. That is, until he decided to get in on the action this evening.

After waking up to dog pee on the stairs and picking up after my nephew all day, I took a shower and sat down around 7pm to take a load off. All the sudden I hear the unmistakable sound of hacking. Simon decided to evacuate his afternoon snack all over the living room and my favorite pair of boots. That Oxy Deep got a work out today.

I better retract all my applications for vomit cleaner and poop picker-upper from the nearby sanctuaries. Tomorrow I retire!

-xo

Anthropomorphizing: A Crazy Cat Lady’s Right

I’m pretty sure taking care of my cat, Simon, is almost exactly like looking after a two-year old. (I’ve had cats my whole life, Simon is somehow ‘special’). They both make life super interesting and worth living but also very crazy. Today I’m going to list the reasons why I think Simon’s mischievous ways are similar to those of a toddler.
  • I can’t understand a word he’s saying. If he’s not napping, eating or playing he’s in my face asking for something but only the Great Kitty in the Sky knows what he’s after.
  • Cleaning is useless. Within minutes of vacuuming I hear Simon scratching in his litter or scooping his dry food right back on the floor. This leaves me to crunch my way around my apartment all over again until the next time I break out my vacuum. Which brings us to…
  • He treats his litter box as a sandbox. If you read my previous post about my cat, you’ve already heard about this. But typically he does everything but build sand castles in there so I have to distract him and attempt to remind him that the litter is not a toy.
  • I can’t use my computer in peace. As soon as I start being productive on my laptop he decides to play on it too. He walks across it, gets at least half his body across the keyboard when trying to snuggle with me or tries to play with my typing fingers.

Simon trying to send an email

  • He wants to play when I want to rest. It never fails that when I want quiet time Simon finds the energy of one thousand elephants and goes crazy.
  • I can’t have anything nice. I need to make sure anything breakable is out of the reach of his grubby, little paws, otherwise I will find it on the floor and most likely in pieces.
  • He hates to be bathed. Though I’m not sure a child would get as violent, I have many visible scares from the last bath attempt. I’ll just deal with is stink.
  • I have to keep him from getting into the cabinets. I have a make-shift lock in the form of the towel threaded through the handles of the cabinet under the sink, this keeps him out of the trashcan.
  • He will follow me relentlessly once he realizes I’m leaving. When I sit down to put my shoes on he’s right up on my lap keeping me from doing anything. Then I have to keep him from running out the door after me.
  • He chooses the strangest places to chill out. These places include on top of my chest of drawers in my closet, halfway between the kitchen and the living area (over a door jamb which looks uncomfortable), and in the bathroom.
I suppose he likes the ambiance
  • Loud noises scare him. He comes to me for comfort.
  • He’ll cry until I pick him up. I then have to hold him so he can look over my shoulder and he can nuzzle my cheek.
  • He’s always curious about what I’m eating. Which means that if I am able to share it with him, I have to.
  • He makes toys out of dangerous items. I have to constantly distract him from the power cord on my computer, or he will chew it to his death. And lastly,
  • I almost always come home to this site (see picture). This is his baby blankie that I got him the day I rescued him. It’s his security blanket that he’s in love with. I keep it at the bottom of my bed for Simon to sleep on but when he’s feeling scared or insecure he brings it with him everywhere. He’s been known to take it from the top of a bunk bed, down a flight of stairs and into the kitchen when staying with my parents. Just call him Linus.
Yes… that is a TV just sitting there.

So, somehow I rescued a cat and ended up with a small child. At least when I leave Simon alone for the day I don’t get investigated by Child Protective Services, but I do feel super guilty.

-xo

PS. I can’t figure out why two of the pictures have those huge borders. WordPress hasn’t been cooperating with me today.

A Day in the Life of Me and My Cat… Before Breakfast… Everyday.

Simon recreating how I feel every morning

 

It happens every morning, before the sun is even up, my cat goes for his morning constitutional. This is not the problem of course, it’s the fact that he goes ‘sand-boxing’ with every use. Then he comes for me. I live in a studio, I can’t just kick him out of my room so he wakes me up with a couple different quirks e-v-e-r-y morning, without fail, whether I’m sleeping in or not, in these very evil ways.

All I know is that the sun is nowhere near rising (my windows face east so I get the first peak of sun streaming through my blinds attempting to give me Lasik eye surgery every morning) and Simon strolls on over to his part of the bathroom to do his thing. I have no idea exactly what time this is because I almost always refuse to even open my eyes when I start to hear him pooping around in there instead of just pooping and leaving. And I never put my glasses on for fear that focusing my eyes on something will wake up my brain but I suspect he goes sometime between 5:30am and 6:30am. The thing is if he just used it and left it wouldn’t even phase me, it wouldn’t even wake me up but he insists on spending the next 5 minutes perfectly covering his work. He does this by pawing all the way down to the bottom of the box, clawing at the trash bag that lines it and then pummeling the side of the bathtub that the box lives next to (all of these actions are what I call ‘sand-boxing’ because all he needs is a shovel and pail and he’s all set). These are the noises that echo in my head every morning because the bathroom is a straight 15 foot shot (seriously, I just measured it) from my cozy little bed. There’s nowhere else for that noise to go but right in my ears. Once the litter use has become just play and I can’t take anymore of the noise I normally counter back with a loud noise of my own (either clapping or yelling or hitting the bed) to scare him out of his zombie clawing state (because sometimes I really think he just goes on autopilot) and he stops and I fall back asleep. … UNTIL!

See, now he’s all awake and feeling good. You know how it is after a really good go at the toilet, so he wants to hang out and play. So in under a half hour he’s at it again, getting into whatever looks good. Usually he stops for a bite to eat and now that I’m sensitive to his whereabouts I focus on every crunch of Friskies. After he’s had his morning snack he decides it’s a great idea to come see me for a visit. Normally when he sleeps it’s always by my feet so when he decides to curl up against my chest I still hope against hope that my petting him will lull him into a nice snooze but no, he’s come to give himself a bath. Now I’m half asleep with a cat using my head to prop himself up so he can lick his butt and I think to myself ‘what have I done to deserve this?’ I’ve given him a super great life, rescued him from a dumpster at just weeks old when he could fit in the palm of my hand, loved him unconditionally for almost 8 years and now I’m being treated like the railings and seat in an old person’s bathtub. The thing is that I’m such a pushover for him that I just give him a nudge and roll over in hopes that I can fall back asleep. BUT NO! Now that I’m not facing him he’s a little offended and shows his discontent my trying to brush my hair with his claws. He literally paws my head then pulls his claws through my hair. I push him off and find myself in an extreme fetal position thinking that all desirable parts of my body are hidden but now Simon is under the impression that I’m playing a game with him. He starts walking over me, back and forth, back and forth, back and forth… back and forth making sure to put all 21 pounds of his pressure on my bladder, stomach or boob through one paw at every pass.

If you haven’t guessed by now, I’m a very stubborn person so I’m still not giving in to Simon’s whims. I’m hoping that at some point he’ll learn that trying to wake me up at the ass crack of dawn everyday won’t do anything for him (I’ll let you know how that works out for me). But he finally gives up on walking on me and leaves to find more trouble and I, still maintaining that half asleep state so I have a slight chance to get a little more rest, curl up and pray to the cat gods that Simon chills out. Though normally he doesn’t and I have to endure at least one if not all of the following forms of harassment:

  • Finding the loudest toy in the bunch and explodes across the wood floors with it. Throwing it for himself, jumping on it, jingling it.. whatever makes the most noise.
  • Going back for more food. Sometimes when he eats he uses his paw to scoop the pieces out onto the floor and then crunches on it… maximizing the amount of noise he makes.
  • Sometimes when the sun is really bursting through the shades a beam of light reflects on the side of my bookcase which somehow screams to Simon to scratch at it (I imagine this voice to be in the form of an evil whisper) so he props himself up on his hind legs and has at it until my yelling at him makes it no fun anymore. (These are the reasons I used to keep a water gun with me at all times but it got moldy so I guess it’s time for a new one!)
  • And lastly, he’ll sit right next to my bed looking at my bedside table which is low to the ground and perfect cat terrorizing height. One of the sections has books that are in some process of being read and he pulls them all out, one by one, on to the floor in a noisy pile.

By now I’m done, it’s between 8am and 8:30am (on my days off, that is) and there’s no hope of me going back to sleep. I get my glasses, turn on my computer, finally go pee after my bladder has been assaulted my Simon’s morning march over my body, get a glass of water or cup of tea, fill up Simon’s food bowl, give him fresh water and start my day. I check my email, screw around on Facebook for a minute and make a to-do list for the day. By this time a half hour or so has passed and I notice I haven’t seen Simon for a little while. I look over to his little corner where I have a fuzzy lime green rug and a little tent-bed-thing set up for him and he’s in there, passed out like a drunken sailor. He’s all nuzzled, curled up, half hanging out of the tent and in kitty dreamland. There is no sign of life besides a faint smile on his face because he went to sleep satisfied with a job well done, yet again waking up the girl who feeds him and scoops his poop. I don’t know why he does it, some say cats are pure evil and are just waiting for you to die so they can eat you. I never believed that but I’m starting to see what they’re saying. Simon gets his sick jollies out of getting me up in the morning and I suppose that’s just what I have to deal with now. If I had a dog I’d be barked at every morning until I took him for a walk, at least this way I get woken up but don’t have to put my shoes or coat on.. or even pants. Take that dog people, cat people don’t need pants!

Simon being cute in his tent

But I love my cat. I wouldn’t change him for anything. I’d let him wake me up early for the rest of my life if he could live that long. But now I think I’ll be a little more quick to respond to his wake-up calls just in case he starts trying to make one of my eyeballs breakfast, because I’m not so sure that all he’s doing every morning is just checking to see if today is the day he can eat me.

Could something with a face like this really end up gnawing on my dead body? I'm starting to think yes.

Sleep tight cat people!

-xo