Home » capucinecogne » My Blog » Blog » The Kitten That Stole My Heart

Yesterday morning, I met the kitten my mum had adopted for the first time. By the evening, the kitten stole my heart, sleeping on my belly, after us both crying when I had to put the stinging, horrid, medicine onto her face.

We all know kittens tend to pull on your heart strings. But what a different experience it is when she is utterly and completely your responsibility. Not just one you take a picture of as she plays, or give a little bit of food at the restaurant. No, she is utterly and completely dependent on you.

I went to Riad les Hirondelles, my mum’s Bed and Breakfast, in the morning, meeting little Plume for the first time. She played with the other kitten, with me, and with anything and everything around her. Unlimited energy.

I realized she had rashes on her face, and we quickly figured it was the same illness as our dog had had as a puppy: a type of ringworms. Its transmissible to other cats, and also humans. So, off I go, to the vet, dropping work for the two-month baby cat. Well, at that point, it was more for my mum’s sake. The vet confirms our suspicions, giving us pills and cream-like medicine to apply on her face. As he removes the scabs, rubbing hard, Plume screams and attacks him. She may be little, but she certainly has character.

Back at the Riad, I give her the antibiotics. That basically requires me forcing half a pill down her throat, because she refuses to eat even the crushed-up antibiotics mixed with her food. She is now wearing a plastic cone around the neck that measures about a quarter of her size. She keeps bumping into everything with it, with a screeching noise from the plastic against the ground. She has not come back the same as this morning.

I decide to take her home, to avoid her infecting the riad’s other cat. I leave her in my bedroom, closing the doors. But to her, even just that one room is already huge. She huddles at the back of her travel box. I am terrified of our dog finding her… He too is a rescue, and although we will properly introduce the two in a few months, she is too small for now. He’s quite a wild one. I’m exhausted after the day of work (bar the vet run), but little kitten needs food and litter. I pluck up the courage to go to the vet to buy some.

I am experiencing a very-surface-level-but-nonetheless-real version of having a baby: taking her to appointments, feeling protective against dangers, putting her needs first, paying the bills, and of course adoring her more and more despite it all. Although I can definitely confirm I am not ready for a child, maybe I need a bit more compassion for kids, mums, and kittens. And understanding that it really is not easy. Currently, I am completely independent, I can pick up and go to wherever I want, whenever I want. Most people in the world do not live in that situation.

As I type, she plays with my hands and the keyboard at times

The climax came in the evening, when I had to put the stinging medicine on her. I hate hurting her. Medicine time is now my most dreaded part of the day. Yesterday, as I forced the medicine on her tiny little face, no bigger than the palm of my hand, I realized how utterly helpless she was. She herself had already given up, succumbing to her fate. That is what broke my heart. That she had accepted her fate, without her usual feistiness and character fighting back. It reminded me of the power of brute force. And that, so often as a woman, as brave and fearless as your character may be, some man with brute strength can use it against you. Can use it to win, and to hurt, and while force no longer determines the leader of the pack, when going back to basics it can determine a situation.

But, don’t worry Plume, my little kitten, I am here to protect you.

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