no pets

Last night, as my head was sinking into my still fresh and new down pillow, I allowed myself a few moments of selfish requests out to the Universe. I didn’t think they were selfish at the time, I didn’t think I was being spoiled. I simply was asking for things that I don’t necessarily need. I was tired; my thoughts were jumbled.

I thought about everything that we’ve been graced with these past six months. We left Alaska with some boxes and arrived in a squalid rental with a donated, cat-scratched couch. We now sit in a beautiful town home with comfortable furnishings (the squalid rental we only stayed in for two days, acts of courage and valiance do still matter!), the cat scratch couch has made way for a lovely second-hand masculine leather one. My husband is working steadily and our creative lives are flourishing. My son is at a wonderful school with funny, kind friends of all races and ethnicities. I am able to stay at home and write, and in the afternoons I pick my son up from his school. I get to offer him a box of pink milk (just like Charlie and Lola drink), some grapes or animal crackers, and we talk about his day.

I have been given so many gifts. We all have. We have been to the ends of the world and back and we’ve been given our gold and silver as a reward.

Am I selfish for wanting a dog or a cat?

I’ve been terribly obsessive lately.

Some friends of ours adopted our beloved tuxedo cat when we moved to Alaska in 2008. Since then we have had no pets to speak of. Our current (beautiful! comfortable! cheap! in a good neighborhood! safe!) town home’s landlord does not allow pets. He has a problem with animals. His mother was an animal hoarder (her menagerie included feral cats, mutant dogs, goats that would leap up from bushes and kick him as he played in their suburban 1950’s backyard). He didn’t allow his own daughter to have a pet when she was a child. He’s not going to allow us to have one. Ever. I’ve asked. Twice.

If things are not perfectly perfect in every way in my life I work and work and dream and work and make drastic changes to make them so. This creates issues. This makes me sound spoiled.

My son sometimes asks for toys when we’re at Target. Ohhhhhh, can I get this? It’s actually kind of rare that he asks (and it’s never for anything big or major). Sometimes it’s so NOT major and he’s so sweet that I am perfectly willing to fork over the 1.99 for a pack of Gogo’s or the clearance Playmobil knights at 5.99 or whatever. Sometimes, only sometimes, he huffs and puffs and threatens to blow his own house down when I say no, not today. It was just Christmas or It’s almost your birthday and you don’t need anything today.

Last night, as I was asking God/the Universe again if it was all possible to have a pet again one day soon (we’ve all so missed something furry running around to love on these past 2.5 years), I realized I was acting a bit like my son in Target. I already have so much. So many gifts. Why am I asking for more?

Maybe if I’m extra good and extra quiet for a while I can get one. We humans are a strange, needy lot. Especially those of us who have so much.


"... all my lovers were there with me, all my past and futures."

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