Sunday, December 23, 2007

I can't remember the last time I went to the bathroom alone. Closing the door means there will soon be six tiny feet with varying degrees of furriness poking under the door, often accented with the percussive sound of a pitbull skull bouncing off the door as the boys try to break in, convinced that, without supervision, this might be the time I accidentally flush myself. I find it much easier to just leave the bathroom door open - because of the layout of my house, it's the only room into which the neighbors can't see, and I hesitate to offer any motivation for the boys to do any remodeling as intense as removing a door when I can avoid it.

So the door stays open, and I am without fail joined by a herd of lifeguards when I'm at my most vulnerable. It's usually Oscar first, because dogs aren't burdened with the feline need to appear irritated and unconcerned. Plus, he's pretty sure he will explode if forced to wait one more second without a hug. So he corners me when I'm sitting, and snuggles up to give his patented mommy-approved kisses. Then Trevor will "happen" along to yell something at the dog, and sometimes swat him. Aslan will then remember an important errand that needs to be managed in the sink, and he'll skulk by, grumbling at the other beasts for whom I have yet to provide satisfactory reasons to their existence. This all happens in a matter of seconds, so the cats' ability to look so perfunctory every time is rather impressive.

This morning, however, I thought I had a shot at a private moment.

I woke up on my own, with it still pitch black outside. As both a morning person and someone in a lifelong battle with insomnia, this in itself isn't too unusual, but I decided not to make attempts to go back to sleep until I had... er... powdered my nose. Because it was slightly earlier than my usual rising, my alarm clock (aka, Trevor jumping up and down on me while yelling in my ear) had not yet gone off, and was in fact no where to be seen. Oscar sleeps in his own room, and since the temperature has dropped below 70 F (21 C), I knew Aslan would be asleep under the space heater, so I had a small window of opportunity for private ablutions.

Without turning on any lights, I tiptoed the twelve feet to the bathroom, moving so silently I was sure no living being could possibly hear. I sat down with the grace of Margot Fonteyn so as not to rattle the seat even the slightest. I didn't even allow myself a sigh of relief when I realized I was alone in the room.

And less then ten seconds later, I heard the telltale rattle of a dog collar as a groggy little man made his way down the hall from his room. Then came Trevor's little chirrup at the dog. And then the thunder of fluffy little feet as Aslan went about his business. Once again, "alone" was vanquished from my vocabulary as Aslan sat up on the sink, Trevor wove in and out of Oscar's legs, and Oscar leaned against my knees, kissing me in his special way (I don't actually like dog kisses, and Oscar has learned this, so he - for lack of a better description - dries off his tongue. He can be as sloppy and slobbery as the next guy, and often is kissing others, but usually when he kisses me, they are dainty, prim, dry little things - it's really rather endearing how he's found a way to kiss me that doesn't make me need to wipe off after).

So there I was surrounded by three furry little gentlemen who love me madly, who don't want to be away from me for a second longer than they have to be, who would no doubt give their lives for me, who make me laugh and cry and laugh again... and suddenly it occurred to me that being alone means being away from that indescribably pure love. And that can't be a good thing at all.

This holiday season, may you be surrounded with more love than you know what to do with, and realize that you are never truly alone.


Blogger Javajem said...

Amen sister!!

Merry Christmas!

3:14 PM  
Blogger Jane said...

A big hug and some Annabele kisses (dainty and a bit prickly) to you, my dear Amie!

4:26 PM  
Anonymous Brandy said...

Thank you. I needed that. I've been feeling terribly lonely lately.

5:09 PM  
Blogger Larry said...

Likewise, I'm sure. Thanks for a lovely tale. I'll try to remember that when Patrick comes in to observe me at my ablutions. Really, so sweet.

8:21 AM  
Blogger Bess said...

Sending you a wee bit more love - and a promise that by the weekend there will be a real letter!


7:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How did you get pictures of the three of them looking so innocent? It must have taken years...

8:02 PM  
Anonymous sherry said...

I know I am 3 weeks late in reading this , but i hadn't read your blog in 3 wks, and it made me both laugh and cry. (first christmas w/out my bree, and she was an all face licky dog and what a treasure you have there.

7:10 AM  

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Marriage is love.