In May I wrote a letter to our cat, the esteemed Mr. Zimblestern George-Ira Gob Winter. (“Zim” in common parlance.) Ezra had just started to show an interest in Zim, and I feared the kitteh’s days of peace and quietude were nearly over.
Indeed, Ezra loves Zim. And Zim’s tolerance level for this love has continued to surprise. Baby and cat are nearly playmates sometimes.
Zim used to crawl under the slipcover of the couch to hide from visiting toddlers. We never expected he would allow an infant’s hugs. But he does!
Admittedly, Zim probably does not particularly *enjoy* Ezra’s affections. But he begrudgingly accepts the baby’s exuberant love. And he’s a cat, so you’ve got to give him top marks for that.
I suppose a love like this could not last. But it is not a scratching incident that got the best of these two, at least not Zim scratching Ezra. The problem stems more from Ezra scratching himself. We learned in December that Ezra is allergic to cats (and just about everything else). Our pediatrician recommended that we find a new home for Zim. Hopefully this will improve Ezra’s eczema and the allergies-asthma-wheeziness he has experienced.
Tomorrow morning we’ll say goodbye to Zim, and he’ll move to the suburbs with a cat-loving couple. Hopefully he’ll like the fresh air, green grass, public schools and voter representation available in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
We’re doing this for Ezra, of course. But we also feel really sad for Ezra. We are sad to take away something that gives him such joy. When Ezra is in a funk and I can’t figure out what to do with him, he inevitably perks up at the sight of the cat. There’s something special about growing up with a pet, and I wish Ezra could have that. (and no, we cannot get a dog at this juncture.)
But there’s also something special about growing up healthy, breathing easy and having skin that is not red and inflamed. I’m hanging onto that. Clinging.
Zimblecat, you have been a great pet. You saw us through a sad, lonely season, pre-baby. Admittedly, the past year has not always been easy — we had a rough transition after Ezra was born. But you’ve really come around and shown more love/tolerance than we could have ever imagined. Your new humans will give you the scratching and belly rubbing you (don’t) deserve. They assure me they come “from a long line of cat people” and even offered to set up skype dates for us. That’s love.
I hope you bring them much happiness.
Be good, Zimby. Use your box, don’t rough up the furniture too much, and keep in touch.