This has been a stressful week. And this has been a week of lessons about love. Recently we adopted a small, sweet, orange and white cat and named her Clementine. (I tend to like culinary names for my pets; our kitty who passed away in October was named Fennel.) Clementine spent two days hiding but then began to warm up to us. Her sweet little personality began to show through, and she ventured out into the living room and bounded around like a kitten.
Clementine apparently has some vision loss in one of her eyes due to a foreign object that damaged the eye and required surgery. Because of this, the adoption agency told us it was normal for her eye to be a little teary. By the end of our first week with her, though, we knew something else was going on. Her eyes – both of them – were watering badly.
It turned out that Clementine has an upper respiratory infection, probably a virus, complicated by a bacterial infection affecting her eyes and mouth. So on top of various other stresses that came up this week, we are now administering five different medications to our new cat four times a day: eye drops, eye ointment, liquid oral antibiotics, pill antibiotics, and antiviral amino acids. And she’s wearing the dreaded cone. But despite all this, or maybe because of it, I have fallen madly in love with this cat. Yes, she’s costing us a lot of money. Yes, she’s requiring a lot of time. No, this is not exactly what we bargained for in a new pet.
But even with everything she is going through, she is learning to trust us. Every time she receives a battery of stinging, likely frightening applications of medicine, she still purrs afterward – and every time, my heart melts. This sweet little helpless creature bobbles around in her cone exploring her new home. I have to admire her resilience. She reminds me that this is what commitment is all about: We agreed to take care of Clementine – no matter what – starting right from the moment we adopted her. And so I will love her right away, right now, and as long as we are lucky enough to have her company.
Isn’t that what love is all about? When you share some kindness and that kindness is returned and then you keep doing that over and over and over – with your partner, with your friends and parents, with your pets. Love, kindness, and compassion – what more can result from them but joy? Sometimes it is just that simple.
Happy Valentines Day, Clementine. Because of you, I finished making these Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Mousse in the nick of time for a V-Day blog post, but you’re worth it. Get well soon, my new little love.
The recipe is from Vegetarian Times and can be seen here. I reduced cooking time to about 25 minutes for cupcakes. To fill them with peanut butter mousse: cut at an angle into the top of each cupcake to remove a cone of cake. Cut off the tip of each cone and discard (or eat) tips reserving the tops. Using a teaspoon, fill the void in each cupcake with peanut butter mousse. Replace the top of the cupcake and gently press down. Use the frosting to conceal the cut in the cakes.