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The Cat’s Meow : Happy 1st Birthday, Gatsby & Penelope!

I am a self-professed crazy cat lady!  Saying it loud, saying it proud!  Today is Gatsby and Penelope’s first birthday!  To reference pop culture: “I hope you have a mice day, best fishes.”IMG_6453

We rescued Gatsby and Penelope back in early September 2015 from F.A.C.T. Animal Rescue, when they were estimated to be 6-8 weeks old.  July 11th is their nominated birthday, as we – sadly – do not know their true birth date.  F.A.C.T. does not have a designated shelter space, and all of their animals go into a dedicated foster system that the rescue has set up in their upstate New York area.  When Sawyer and I drove from Burlington to Glens Falls to meet the two sibling kittens (then named Wally and Polly), we also met their foster mother (an incredibly sweet lady who loved the little buggers), received their up-to-date veterinary information, information about how they’d been fed and litter box trained, and the environment in which they’d been raised in thus far.  I couldn’t be more thankful for F.A.C.T. and the wonderful work they do!

Gatsby and Penelope have been living with Sawyer and I for 10 months now, and they couldn’t be more integrated into our family dynamic (we even had a special birthday dinner prepared for them, a mashup of all their favorite foods!).  I have Seasonal Affective Disorder, and the winters are difficult for me to cope with, but having the kittens in my life has brought me so much joy both hoped for and unexpected; I hardly had a day feeling blue this past winter.  They are so enveloped in excitement for each new day and full of wonder for their surroundings (even if it’s just looking out the window each morning or staring down a pigeon on the roof) that it inspires me to look at my own life differently, with a freshness that I hadn’t before.IMG_6479.jpg

Cats inspire a lot of people.  They have been said to make people suffering from illness feel comforted simply by purring.  My cats are an absolute blessing.  Whether they’re curled up next to me on the futon for a movie, on the pillow next to me during a quiet night of reading, or hurtling about the apartment following me as I do chore after chore to keep the space in order.

They have inspired me to live a simpler life.  Gatsby and Penelope take life in stride.  They never hesitate to do exactly what they wish to do at a certain moment.  I have learned to take certain pages from their book of life and apply it to my own lifestyle.  I have found that their bare necessities are helpful when it comes to my mental health – that taking a cat nap or just relaxing instead of running around trying to do too many things at once can really help me in the long run when it comes to getting things done.  They have a certain wisdom and grace that I admire, as I’m sure many cat owners admire in their own cats.  Keeping it simple is the way to go.

Has anyone learned any vital lessons from their furry family members?  If so, what have you learned, from whom, and how has it brought you peace?  Best wishes to everyone, and happy first birthday to my babies!

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