The babies love the cat. When Sarah walks into the room, it is like Marilyn Monroe has just entered the scene. Everything stops so they can watch her. They look at her intently, hoping to catch her gaze. They never do. They have started reaching out for her. Sometimes they are lucky enough to have her walk close to them, so their little fingertips can graze her fur. It is heaven. Someday they hope she will speak to them. Someday.
In the meantime, Sarah is not as aloof as she could be. She is interested in the babies. Occasionally she will smell their heads -- preferably when they don't know it's happening. The 5:00 a.m. feeding usually finds me sitting on the floor between the babies in their boppy pillows, holding a bottle in each mouth. Sarah often comes in and sits on my lap there. She wants me to pet her, but I'm short the hands to do it. So if one of the girls reaches her little fingers into Sarah's fur, Sarah chooses not to realize it's not me.
One day when Elisa got very, very lucky, Sarah's tail fell on her neck. Elisa took it in her hands, like a banana, and put the tip in her mouth. She sucked it until it looked like the end of a paint brush that has been sitting in a jar of water. I didn't bother to stop the action because 1) I didn't have enough hands, and 2) it was inevitable.
Meanwhile, Sarah loves one thing more than all others. String. She has been known to swallow thread that's still threaded through my sewing machine, and run upstairs pulling the thread behind her, as it's being unwound from the spool in the sewing room. We have a hula girl lamp that used to have a grass skirt on it. Sarah ate it. We found puddles of grass-skirt throw-up around the house and the remnants of the skirt on the floor. (When a delivery man came to the house and saw the lamp, and I explained what happened, he said, "Good cat." Sadie, our lamp hula girl, was only wearing a painted-on thong under the skirt).
So when Leigh, my delightful cousin with two growing girls, sent us a new box of hand-me-downs, we were thrilled to find a pink plastic hula skirt among the clothes. And Sarah was delighted as well.
Now the girls and Sarah have one thing in common: they love this skirt to pieces. There is nothing more fun to entwine one's fingers in, or chew out the side of one's mouth in hopes that a strand will fall off. The texture is delicious to little girls, and the flavor is delicious to cats who also enjoy the taste of plastic bags.
Now when Elisa or Amanda is sad, I hand her the skirt to rub her face in. Perhaps they know it is covered with cat spit. Perhaps that just makes it all the better.
To see a video of our beautiful girl-girl-cat dynamic, click HERE.