Mimi This Morning

black cat on table

Mimi This Morning

Last year on this day, I fell in love. Or I realized I had fallen in love long before. Surely, when kittens are tiny, momcat doesn’t mind if her babies get the spotlight, a friend was interested in adopting Mimi when the kittens were weaned, and I think Mimi was not of the mind to have her heart broken again by a human. When Mimi arrived with her babies on July 29, 2007 we had a history, and weren’t sure we had a future. But we looked at each other that morning and realized we had forever.

It’s not any special day, just a nice sunny morning on a day I get to stay home all day to work.

Mimi follows me all around the first floor of my house, up and down the steps a few times, then settles into the bathroom as I take my shower and get ready for the day, talking to me in her little “eep!” and “meee…” noises. Mimi is petite and beautiful, but her voice is kind of an afterthought.

Sometimes you just love a kitty at first sight, but sometimes it sneaks up on you later. That would be Mimi and me.

At every opportunity, I reach out to pet her, pull playfully on the end of her tail, answer her comments and invite her to come along with me in what I’m doing. She hardly needs the invitation as she stops to wrap herself around my legs, jumps up on a counter and reaches out to touch me, give me head butts me wherever she can and rubs her face on me, making full, extended, direct eye contact whenever possible. Later she settles on my keyboard shelf nestling her little bottom against my right wrist, stubbornly refusing to adjust her position for my typing comfort, meaning that half of what I type must be deleted and retyped.

Prior to her coming to my house she and I had actually had a few conflicts as she constantly hunted in my back yard to take live kill to her endless kittens, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. Mimi came to me with her babies, and I admit I gave nearly all my attention to them—and who wouldn’t, seeing four perfect little black kittens…especially after having recently lost one of her other perfect black kittens?

But though I interacted with the kittens more often than Mimi, I didn’t insist that she stay with her babies and let her wander the house at will. She quietly and carefully explored, having no conflict with my other four cats, settling on the floor by the front door where it was cooler that August to rest her belly after nursing. Then she’d gracefully jump onto the end of my desk and tiptoe to the center where I was, carefully walking among Namir, Cookie, Peaches and Kelly, and finding a tiny spot for herself, rolling herself into a compact black ball, not to sleep, but to spend time with us as I worked.

What a nice kitty, I remember thinking, though she rarely interacted with me directly. Her former owner had told me she had been kind of distant, and this is what I saw of her. A friend was interested in adopting her when the kittens were weaned so I kept note of her personality to tell her future person, and not to be concerned if she wasn’t a lap cat.

As time has passed, I guess Mimi had the same realization as Cookie years ago, that she wasn’t going to be tossed back out, that she actually belonged here, and she began spending more time with me, and I continued to admire her petite figure and natural grace and encouraged her to join me. Then she began to seriously play and also assist me in daily tasks, following me, talking to me, and now and then sitting on my lap, though with three senior kitties those opportunities were few and far between. After raising six litters of kittens, Mimi is nothing if not patient.

When Peaches was still here, Mimi joined the senior girls to eat and hang out, though she’s hardly a senior with the need of extra meals, but to let me know she was “special”. She became one of my ladies in waiting along with Cookie and Kelly, and always sleeps next to me on the bed every night. She’s had time and space to develop her personality, learn to be a fun kitty, and trust a human, and though she’s still petite and quiet, she’s hardly the kitty who came in the box with her babies.

I have found homes for dozens of kittens and cats over the years. After a certain period of time, over a year perhaps, foster kitties stop being foster kitties for me and end up being permanent kitties unless I am keeping them for someone, as I did in keeping Dickie for my niece for a year. I love and care for them before that, but end up falling in love with all my kitties at some point, fosters or not.

So Mimi and I decided this is a serious thing, and that we really more than like each other. I know that kitty look that says, “thank you,” and the one that says, “I love you.” Does it balance out the losses suffered from living with so many cats? Perhaps, but it also adds another unique gem on the strand of the feline loves in my life.

Love at first sight is sweet, but sometimes realizing a perfect love has been there all along is much sweeter and long-lasting. This morning, Mimi sits on my keyboard shelf with her little fanny on my right wrist making it difficult to type well, but this is our thing. You know how it is when you’re in love.

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All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in purchasing one as a print, or to use in a print or internet publication.


17 Comments on “Mimi This Morning”

  1. CATachresis says:

    So much of what you say resonates with me. Beautiful post!

    • animalartist says:

      Thanks, Carolyn, I’m sure most of us long-time rescuers have experienced this. Mimi was the first time since blogging that I had the chance to write about it in real time!

  2. Mimi may have a small voice but both of you have big loving hearts.

  3. A beautiful exploration of how the relationships with these felines who come into our lives grow, Bernadette….how that love grows and one day,we suddenly realize that the cat we’ve been “just fostering” crept into our hearts when we weren’t looking.

  4. lostdogharry says:

    and your love for Mimi comes through in every photograph – which is why I keep correcting you that the Fantastic Four is really the Fantastic Five 🙂

    • animalartist says:

      Harry, except that Mimi did everything possible to distinguish herself from her children–she definitely didn’t want to be known as “one of the kids”. I think that’s why she allied herself with the senior girls, so everyone would know she was an adult and should be respected as such!

  5. Anita says:

    Beautiful writing, and beautiful Love!

  6. vscook says:

    There’s something about Mimi I just love. It’s so easy to overlook her quiet charm, to be overshadowed by her bigger offspring – but she has stolen my heart too!

  7. Ingrid says:

    You took Mimi in on the same day I adopted Amber: July 29. It wasn’t love at first sight with Amber, either – it took me three months before I acknowledged that this “foster” cat wasn’t going anywhere. And even then, it was a love that grew slowly.

    There are probably as many different kinds of love as there are cats. And they’re all wonderful, and we’re all blessed when these wonderful creatures choose us as their humans.

    • animalartist says:

      Ingrid, what a coincidence! Because I don’t know Mimi’s birthday, July 29 is her nominal birthday, her “homecoming day”. I’m not really certain how old she is–with her sixth litter I presume she was at least two, but I think three is more likely. Hard to believe she will be eight years old already, she seems like a kitten.

      But that’s part of what I was expressing on your post about cloning–part of the joy of relationships with animals is just like making human friends, each relationship is unique, but if it’s truly love it deepens through the years, and nothing can copy that.

  8. […] Photography Interviews With 9 Industry LeadersERIC SCHWABEL – Burning Man CapturedMimi This Morning window.google_analytics_uacct = "pub-1270805316598579"; var analyticsFileTypes = ['']; var […]

  9. rumpydog says:

    Happy Gotcha! Day to Mimi. Sounds like Mimi “got” you though. 🙂


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