They said if I could keep him restrained for five minutes that should do it. Who were they kidding?
Two seconds in and my right bicep had already endured multiple lacerations. I was convinced my left eye was in imminent danger. I should have put a shirt on before attempting this. In fact, safety goggles were probably in order. How could an otherwise docile 8 year-old be so strong?
Four seconds in and I wasn’t sure how much longer I would last. This is what I get for skipping Total Body, I thought to myself.
It must have been around the seven second mark that the absurdity of it all hit me: 10pm on a Friday night, a scantily-clad 38 year-old woman works up a sweat in her living room and — here’s the killer — without a single man in sight. Just a pissed off, unwieldy cat whose back paw required a vet-prescribed blue Epsom Salt soak.
This was not the life I’d expected. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not unhappy with my life. But I never imagined that at this juncture of my life, I’d be trying to give a cat a foot soak. And the ungrateful cat wasn’t having any of it. I actually think it would have been easier to give him a facial and deep tissue massage.
On the outside looking in, I seem normal. You’d never know. You wouldn’t peg me as “that crazy cat lady”. I do my best to keep my clothes hair-free and work hard to not talk incessantly about the critters (unless, of course, the listener is “one of us”.). I take pride in the fact that my dry-cleaner doesn’t know I own a cat.
I am all too aware of the stigma, the stereotypes. I also know I’m not alone.
I know you’re out there. In studio apartments on the Lower East Side, a one-bedroom pied-à-terre in Murray Hill, in Upper East Side townhouses and Tribeca lofts. You too soak paws, scoop litter, brush fur, trim claws, buy lint rollers by the case, and kneel to coax reticent kitties out from underneath sofas.
I’m not ashamed to say I do these things. I’m not ashamed to say: Yes, I have cat (s).