As you can tell from my stories, cats were an inevitability for me. I love animals in general. Whether they be Cats; birds; dogs, even reptiles and bovines.
Animals don’t actively seek out human beings to harm them, they at least hide, only attacking when no other option is available.
My family eventually built a house, and we moved in when I was still in grade five. Off to one side of the house, the builders had left a pile of rubble. As a kid, I knew it as the Pile.
In the Pile a stray cat would, for years, nest, and give birth several times a year. I wasn’t allowed to have a cat, so said nothing to a parent about her. I was with her many times as she delivered her kittens.
When I met my now ex-husband, he was especially vicious towards cats. He lied about the next-door neighbour’s cat sleeping in my infant son’s crib with him, to give himself permission to harm it.
It got away because I didn’t know what was happening, I was feeding my son at the time (the cat couldn’t have been in the crib with my son). He had the cat trapped between the wire door and front door of the house. I pulled at his arm and the doors flew open and the cat got away.
Prior to that event, he actively chased, and ran down a cat, with his car. I was in the passenger seat.
I was traumatised for most of my life.
First by my father’s wife, then by my ex-husband. The transition from one abusive relationship into another was seamless.
I realised early on, that if someone could deliberately murder innocence, like my ex-husband did that night, I had to look after my children, and myself, without any expectations of him.
Silence was the tool I’d been taught to employ as the shield to purposely keep me from living. My ex-husband merely picked up where my father’s wife left off. Their manipulation was an unspoken inference that there was no help, I was on my own and they liked me that way.
I was that cat, on a dark back road, being toyed with.