My Daughter’s Baby by: Linda Morgan
My Daughter’s Baby
By: Linda Morgan
It was a beautiful sunny day. My daughter, Louisa, had just gotten home from her kindergarten class, and was playing outdoors with her best friend Sarah. I was preparing their lunch, when the two girls ran inside.
“Mommy! I found a kitty! I saw him limping outside. Can we keep him?”
Louisa was holding a small grey cat in her arms. The cat only had one eye. There were a few patches of fur missing, and there were many cuts all over his body. Clearly, this cat had been abused.
“Tell you what,” I said. “He looks like he’s hurt pretty badly, so I’ll take him to the animal hospital. We’ll keep him until he’s better, then Daddy and I will talk about keeping him forever. Okay?”
“Okay” Louisa said. “Hey, can we call him Max?
“You can call him whatever you like,” I said.
Up until this point, we had a strict no pets rule in this house. Let’s face it: they make messes, you have to feed them, and you have to clean up their litter. It’s like having a child that never grows up. But I couldn’t in good conscience leave this poor kitty to his own defenses when he was in such a bad condition. I have always tried to teach my daughter to help those who are less fortunate than we are, and I’d be a hypocrite if I turned my back on this cat.
The next day, I took Max to the vet, who informed me that Max’s recovery would take about two months. In addition to all the cuts and missing fur, he had a broken leg. The vet also informed me that Max would need to be kept indoors until all of the cuts were gone, and he gave me some antibiotics and pain medication to give him.
That day, when Louisa came home from school, she couldn’t wait to see the cat. “Come on Max, let’s go play outside!” she said. “Honey,” I said to her, “the doctor said Max is hurt badly, and he can’t play outside until he feels better.”
“OK, we’ll play inside then!” she said.
“You can still go outside if you like,” I said. “You’re not sick.”
“But you stay inside when I’m sick Mommy” Louisa said. “You take care of me, and you don’t go anywhere until I’m all better. Max is my kitty, so I’m not going anywhere until he’s all better.” She grabbed one of her picture books,sat down with Max in her lap, and started showing him all of the pictures.
The next morning, I went to Louisa’s bed to wake her up for school. She looked so warm, lying in her Barbie blanket and holding Max in her arms. “Louisa, it’s time for school,” I told her. “You need to wake up.”
Louisa yawned. “Mommy, I can’t go to school today. Max is still sick. I need to take care of him.”
“Don’t worry,” I reassured her. “I’ll look after him while you’re gone. I’ll take extra special care of him, I promise.”
“Okay,” she said. “I hope he gets better soon. I’m his mommy now, and I love him.”
At the tender age of five, my daughter taught me a lesson about showing unconditional love. Despite the fact that Max was different from all the other cats in the neighbourhood, my daughter loved him. I couldn’t be more proud to be her mother.
Max did get better. Twenty years later, though quite old, he is still alive and kicking. He now lives with Louisa and her husband, who are expecting their first child next month. The other day, Louisa and I got together for lunch.
“You know Mom,” she said, “I was just thinking about when we got Max. He’s so old now, but I remember it like it was just yesterday. That cat has taught me so many things. I mean, even though he had been abused, I loved him right from the start, just the way he was. I would have done anything for him. I still feel that way. And he taught me about responsibility too. I did clean up his box and fed him when I got older.And when he went missing last year, I cried and worried so much. It’s been quite a ride with him, just as it will be with the kid I’m carrying.”
About Linda Morgan
Sheis a rock and roll loving girl, who grew up and resides in Etobicoke. She lives with my husband, their dog Lumen, and their cats Jane and Bishop. In addition to reading and writing, she also enjoys playing drums in her spare time.
She has all the confidence in the world that herdaughter will be a great parent.
To contact Linda send an email to: email@example.com
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