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Always room for one more

By Robin Dearing
We've all been pretty sad over the passing of our dear kitty. But I was surprised at how hard it hit Margaret. She took the news a lot harder that I imagined. She's an emotional, sentimental little girl who, like her mama, easily finds the tragedy in such events. We talked a lot about the cycle of life and how death plays an evitable role. Again, Margaret amazed me at how she seemed to grasp these difficult concepts and even seemed to be comforted by them. Even though we were all getting along fine and coping with our grief, Bill and I couldn't leave well enough alone. Last Saturday we added to this little bundle of fur to our family: Frieda, Robin.jpg Her name if Frida Kahlo (let me correct that, Frida Mary Kahlo — Margaret insisted that the kitten have the name Mary somewhere in her name). She's been a most delightful distraction. She's two pounds of vim and vigor and embodies all those things that kitten are: cute, little, fearless, playful, goofy, uncoordinated ... I could go on. But as much as Bill and I have delighted in our new little furball, we've enjoyed watching Margaret take care of her even more. Margaret has taken the lead on the kitten care with exuberance. Whenever I thought it was time to feed Frida, Mar would jump and shout, "I'll do it, because it's my responsibility." We never suggested that it was her responsibility, but were pleased at her newfound sense of duty. She even volunteered to clean out the kitty's litter box. First, I had to explain the importance of cleanliness when dealing with cat boxes and then stress repeatedly that one should never, ever use one of our tablespoons for such an activity. Fortunately, Frida is an incredibly social little thing and is most happy when she's in someone's lap either napping or enjoying a good book. Mar, Frieda.jpg It's great to have a distraction from my grief over losing my companion of 12 years, but it's even better to see that my daughter — at 6-years-old — has developed tenderness and a sense of responsibility.