Dahlia Tells All: How I came to be here

Even from my first days in this world, I knew I was destined to be an extraordinary cat. Therefore, it’s only right and fitting that I should share my story with you, my devoted fans. But before I tell you about my life today, I want to tell you of my humble origins.

My first memories of this life are nothing but warmth, sweet smells, and the rumbling vibrations that made me know deep inside that everything was all right. Whenever I felt the empty ache in my little tummy, I’d sniff around until I found my nipple of choice and drink until I’d had my fill. And after I ate, there was the sharp and yet soothing sensation of a giant warm, wet thing cleaning me from head to tail in great swoops.

Then my ears opened: I heard other little mewing voices — which corresponded with the wriggling furry things I’d climbed over and around to get to my place at momma’s milk bar — and discovered that the bliss-inducing rumble I’d known from before my birth had a sound. I also discovered I mewed too!

There were other sounds, of course: constant loud, harsh roaring and ear-prickling sticky noises coming from the direction of a hot, oily smell I’d sensed; tempting teeny squeaks and chirps from the sweet-smelling direction; and clomping steps above my head.

When my eyes opened a few days later, I saw the colors and shapes of everything I’d only smelled and heard before. It was a harsh awakening, and my brain strained to take in all the new information and give it a name and a place in my world. My siblings — I could see them now — were having the same issues and often we curled up together in a big pile of purring comfort, especially when momma was out hunting.

But then momma came home one day with a strained look in her eyes, and even though she tried not to show it, it was clear to me that she was hurting. My brothers and sisters and I tried our best to comfort her. We couldn’t see a sore spot to lick, though.

Every day momma went out hunting, even though she was weak and sore, and more often than not she came back empty-mouthed. We kittens were getting hungry, too: since momma wasn’t eating, she couldn’t make enough milk to fill our stomachs, either.

I don’t remember how long it took after that day she came home tired and sore. Those days were dark and scary for us. But one day momma told us, “I’m going to take you somewhere safe. I wish I could take care of you, but you know I haven’t been able to feed you, or myself, for a while.” Her exhausted eyes glistened with unshed tears.

Momma brought us, one by one, out from under our porch and into a tiny house in a nearby yard. There were a whole bunch of other tiny, wriggling babies there, but they weren’t the same kind of babies as us. They had slappy little tails and slobbery tongues, and they went “yi-yi-yi” when they missed their momma.

When momma finally dropped off the last of us, she was limping heavily. She gave each of us a lick on the head and said, “Mama Dog is my friend. She has offered to feed you and raise you, now that I no longer can. She’s going to look scary when you first meet her, but you can trust her. We’ve been friends since she was a puppy.”

Momma gave a barely audible trill, and into the house came the biggest, most monstrous creature I’d ever seen! Her tail was twice as long as I was, and it whipped left and right with no rhyme or reason. I was afraid that if she didn’t eat me, her tail would send me flying into the chilly late-winter air.

But it didn’t turn out that way. Mama dog took my siblings and me in. She let us drink from her breast, and she taught her pups how to play nicely with us. I never did see my momma again, but sometimes I think I hear her soothing me from the spirit world.

See the rest of the story | Next chapter >

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Comments

  1. Candace Elmore says

    This made my eyes leak. What a terrific Momma cat you had. Everything she did for you was due to the love she felt for you. I’m sorry you didn’t get to grow up with her, but as an adoptive human mommy, I promise you that Momma dog loved you as much as Momma cat.

  2. Caitlin says

    This made my eyes leak (a lot!), too. I cuddled my own big momma kitty Abby and asked her if she misses her babies (she was a homeless momma stray when I adopted her through the humane society–not sure what happened to her kittens). Thanks for sharing your tender story, Dahlia. Lots of other kitties (and kitty moms) appreciate it. :-)

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