Wednesday, September 29, 2010

For the Love of a Pissy Cat

He was a gift from a dear friend. He came to me at a time when I had surgery, was getting my life together after a long term relationship ended and I needed a friend. I named him Rudy, short for “rude boy,” a popular term in Jamaican culture. I treated him like my first child. I fed him, hugged him when he would let me, changed his litter and sometimes he even slept in my bed. Then came the kids and my focus shifted. He grudgingly lurked in the shadows of my life as my primary focus became baby no 1, then 2, then 3. He acted out many times, often showing his displeasure by leaving nice “presents” for me in my shoes, my purse, my sofa and even my bed. Still we are together, Rudy and I. I have been asked on occasion, “why don’t you get rid of that pissy cat.” Well, he is like a member of the family to me; at 12, he would be considered an elderly relative that I treasure. The way I was brought up, when your relatives get old, you don’t send them away, they move in with you, until death do you part. Pets teach us love and responsibility. They take us through the cycle of life by preparing us to be good parents and eventually how to take care of an elderly parent, if the need arises. 

There are so many thing that I love about Rudy.  I love that he is temperamental and aloof; he gives love to those who love him and has disdain for those who are not "cat" people. He focuses on getting his basic needs met. He is not needy, he loves the great outdoors, even though he is an indoor cat.  Just when I think that he doesn’t care, he shows up and rub on my legs or sit comfortably next to my feet just to let me know that he still loves me. He holds a grudge. When his litter bin isn’t clean enough, he pees in my shoes and my purse; it takes great skill to do that. He loves wet cat food and he can hear the can opening a mile away.

Recently, I rushed Rudy to the hospital because he was bitten by an animal.  I wasn't sure if it was a wild cat or snake but it was a nasty bite. We become reflective and sentimental when we almost lose someone that we love, which is why some who is famous for not being sentimental is trying to wax  poetic about a cat. A friend once complained that people spent too much time loving animals when they should be loving humans - there is room in our hearts to do both.  Rudy and I have made it through over 10 years of the rollercoaster of life, including 3 moves, 3 babies, 4 job changes, boyfriends that he liked, boyfriends that he hated instantly, a husband who is allergic to him, and boys who pull his tail.  He pick something that I love to piss on everytime that he is upset with me, including my resume right before an important job interview. I have been told that I can put him on Prozac to stop the bad behavior but that is the way that we communicate and I really hope that he will be my pissy cat for another 10 years.

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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Rethinking Good Study Habits

Child´s BrainImage via Wikipedia

"Varying the type of material studied in a single sitting — alternating, for example, among vocabulary, reading and speaking in a new language — seems to leave a deeper impression on the brain than does concentrating on just one skill at a time. " This is a new theory put forth to disprove all the others that we have been relying on to help our children learn. Soon there will be another article disproving this one. I find that there is some value in most studies, and the more tools that we have to help our children learn the better they will perform in school.  Every child learns differently, so read with a cautious eye and employ the method that will best suit your child. 

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Monday, September 6, 2010

Dads - Both sons and daughters need you.

father in nuclear familyImage via Wikipedia
Just read a curious article that stated that having a son will reduce the likelihood of divorce. I am a fan of anything that will prolong marriage so if having a son helps, that is a good thing. I am worried that this infers that girls just are not as valued a boys. A father should give as much care to the thought of walking away for a daughter as he would to a son. I can't overstate the need for a dad in a young girl's life - beauty and status in life should be the least of a father's concern.  Every morning, my boys wake up and if they see dad, they say "where is Mommy", and if they see Mommy, they say "where is Daddy?". I certainly hope that Mommy and Daddy will never be further than the next room.

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Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Dangers of Psychosis Drugs for the Young

Young children, especially boys are being medicated with alarming frequency. A New York Times article highlights the story of Kyle Warren, a boy who was given psychotic drugs from he was 18 months to 3 years old. After many incorrect diagnosis and years of taking medication usually reserved for adults, he was admitted into a program that got him off the drugs and gave him the counseling that he needed.

Both the article and the comments are informative and a wake up call for parents, especially parents of boys. Visit the links below for more information.

Dangers of Psychosis Drugs for the Young: 

Can Preschoolers be Depressed?

The Medicated Child: 

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