Love Ya, Mean It

Ah, Valentine’s Day.

Who love me? My pussies. My pussies looooooove me.

The day of love so many tend to loathe while others welcome the warm fuzzies with gigantic appetites that rival my admiration for wine and Skinny Pirates.

The feel of Love Day for certain peeps.

As a kid, I carefully crafted a Valentine’s Day mailbox for school every year (you know, back when you could celebrate shit in school without the worry of the teeniest tiniest chance of offending someone). Students weren’t required to participate but I can’t remember when a kid didn’t. Everyone in class gave everyone a Valentine. If a kid didn’t have a box my teacher (shout out to my first grade teacher, Mrs. Shawler who reads this blog!) had an extra shoebox or two wrapped in red paper. No one was left out.

Will you be mine?

I was always lucky that I had a family who liked to celebrate everything, so no holiday was ignored. Not even one that I now often hear claims that it’s “made up” for people to get gifts. (Well peeps, if you treated your loved ones “special” all the time, grand gesture days wouldn’t be needed, now would they? You could simply just get a well-meaning card or write a note from the heart any day of the year but I digress). My sister and I’d wake up at home to little Valentines on our chairs at the kitchen table, maybe along with a small box of chocolates. We were always excited for the party to take place that day at school.

Fast forward to high school when the day of admiration became a sport of sorts.

If this high school Glamour Shot doesn’t make you want to be mine, I don’t know what fucking will.

The Honor Society sold carnations to fellow students for a dollar every Valentine’s week and the members would drop the flower off to your designated recipient anonymously. Some peeps had armloads. Some had none. I just wanted a pink one.

Some girls got called to the office and paraded delivered – delivered in a vase and everything – flowers around school. It didn’t matter if it was from their dad, grandparents or boyfriend. I was one jealous bitch. Then, in an instant, that all changed.

Because I became that girl one year.

Oh hi. I got the flowers…and then some.

The Honor Society members delivered carnations during first period. I was in concert band every morning with my sweet silver Doc Severinsen trumpet at my side. My sophomore year, the doors flung open and the band instructor stopped our warm-up. A group of kids came in hauling carnations in large buckets for their soon-to-be owners. While I was hoping to get a flower or two, my eyes laid sight on the mother of all Valentine’s day hauls. A gigantic, white stuffed teddy bear with a red bow around its neck, holding a bag of Hershey’s Kisses. So enormous, you couldn’t see the person transporting it.

About as big as this dog I gifted Princess B a few years back.

I think I literally turned green with envy at whoever was going to be the recipient of this stuffed animal. I mean, I thought I would get a flower or two because my girlfriends and I always sent them back and forth. But this, this shit was different. This was the stuff that warm and fuzzy, cheesy as fuck Valentine’s memories were crafted.

Being in the brass of the band, I sat in the last row of the room. And I’ll be damned if that fucking bear didn’t inch its way closer and closer. I kept thinking…which girl had a boyfriend that sat near me? I couldn’t wait to see who was going to get the pristine bear.

As the hidden stuffed animal transporter walked behind me, I almost gave myself whiplash looking to my left. But to my unabashed chagrin, that motherfucker was lifted over my head and sat into my lap. Hershey’s fucking kisses and all. To this day, that is one of my best Valentine’s Days (which may seem a little sad since my day of love peaked in high school but I mean, it’s true).

This moment of sweetness it didn’t come from a love interest. It came from a friend. From a best friend who (although didn’t take me to his senior prom and I will never, ever let him forget it) remains a bestie to this day.

Oh the bangs. On both of us.

The teddy bear came from Scooby.

We share a love of stuffed animals. Obvies.

Relationship game still on point today.

This gesture seemed like the grandest of all gestures in the universe at the time. All of these years later, it still does. My gay best friend delivered my grandest Valentine’s Day memory. Why was this so significant? Because he didn’t have to do anything. But he loved me and wanted me to know. Isn’t that just a simple thing to do?

Scooby was celebrating Galentine’s Day with me before Galentine’s Day was a thing.

Galentine’s Day started about a decade ago on the TV show, Parks and Recreation by Amy Poehler’s character to celebrate “ovaries before brovaries”. It was about women celebrating female friendship.

Now, Galentine’s is a nonofficial holiday celebrating all things love without romance.

Grand gestures aren’t needed (but if any of you have a Louis Vuitton en route for delivery today, professing your love for me, I am not going to turn it down). A single flower is nice. A card will do. A simple text message. A smile, a hug, a thank you. Whether it’s love or like in today’s climate, bringing happiness to any and all of those around us isn’t really that hard. We just have to be kind to let one another know that we like – or even love – them.

Finding yourself in a non-traditional Valentine’s day sitch? You aren’t alone. You do have love in your life.

Maybe we are madly in love with our offspring and the kids around us…

Maybe we are in love with our partner who we married on Valentine’s Day…

Maybe we are madly in love with our careers, jobs, work pals….

Maybe we are madly in love with our parents and write them letters to them when they’re away…

Maybe we are madly in love with extended family…

Maybe we are madly in love with our fur babies (which you all know I’m bat shit about mine and is honestly the greatest love in the entire universe)…

Maybe we are madly in love with thoughts of yesteryear…

Maybe we are madly in love with our sibling…

Maybe we are madly in love with our friends…

Regardless of what it is in your life that you love, be madly in love with your own authentic self first.

Yep. This about sums it up for me.

If you don’t love (let alone like) yourself as your own #1, no one will love the true you who is meant to be loved.

Be your own damn Valentine. Because whether you realize it or not, there is some sort of love in your life worth celebrating (even if that deep, deep love is for binge watching Netflix).

Make some snacks.

Toast to yourself.

Johnny always shows his love.

Whatever it may be, treat yourself to your version of my stuffed teddy bear this Valentine’s Day.

Heart heels – my updated stuffed animal.

After spreading some love around the office today, I’m mauling my fur babies and then taking myself out with First Mate. The same as we did last Galentine’s Day and the year prior- to not only toast to our love of one another but also to how badass we both are in our own right.

Last day of love we went to Sperry’s – an old school steak house where the same patrons have been visiting during the restaurant’s 45-year existence. First Mate and I felt like runway supermodels surrounded by folks in their eighth decade of life and said yes to the complimentary dessert and adult beverages that headed our way.

So fancy in 2019.

Now go be the love of your own damn life. If you need inspiration, please think of me.

Love ya, mean it.

CBXB

CBXB!

 

 

 

 

My Billion Dollar Pussy

Who knew you could buy a knight in shining armor?

He refuses to wear the armor.

This is a busted ass version of a fairy tale (what other version would you expect from me?), where I’m not the queen. That role is of course, has been occupied by His Royal Highness Teddy Bear ever since I rescued his ass seven years ago. I’ve happily played the role of loyal servant (and I still do) however, the perils of life turned me into a version of Humpty Dumpty…. one that weebles, wobbles and falls the fuck down (typically face first).

Me speedy recovery remedy after a fall.

While I’m the damsel in distress, my feline has caused me more torment as he’s decided to test the waters of almost every single ailment known to catkind while I was trying to trudge through the forest of life, getting us into some semblance of a kingdom. Even though his dramatic ailments added to my worry, he pulled the fuck through every time. Just like a knight in shining armour.

Just scaring mom for shits and giggles.

I couldn’t love my cat Teddy Bear more than if I birthed him from my own loins (but let’s be real, I’d pay a surrogate because ew, pain) and I would take a bullet the size of Donald Trump’s ego to save his furry life. Although over the years, the amount of cold hard cash I’ve shelled out to keep the love of my life alive and kickin’ rivals the amount NASA spends to put an astronaut on the moon. But it’s worth every fucking penny.

Like the start of many fairy tales, ours was love at first meow. Never mind the fact that he had an upper respiratory infection and ringworm due to being crammed in a one-bedroom apartment of 30 other felines before he was rescued (save your fucking jokes about this being me one day for later, please and thanks). Being such a trashtacular high maintenance gal myself, it felt nothing other than natural that this soon-to-be drama king chose me as his human soulmate.

Forced Soulmates.

After His Majesty’s ringworm and respiratory infection subsided, we learned that he had a food allergy to chicken (through several visits to the vet) as he would develop what basically looked like kitty chicken pox. The little red dots would scab over and Tedstar got to wear a cone, which ever pet owner knows is the best time ever.

The most pissed off cone head on the planet.

All the feels about the cone, complete with puke.

So I received a prescription card to purchase $80 per bag cat food that’s a mixture of peas and duck. Maybe I should have known when I walked into the kitchen one day and saw this…

Bitch Peas

Forcing Ted to be my bestie took a solid two years, as he was skiddish, nervous and full of anxiety due to the lack of human contact while he was one of 29 others the first year of his life. But one miraculous day, my shy little pussy morphed into a full on stalker. I couldn’t sit (and still can’t) down for 15 seconds without him creeping onto my lap or darting like a figure skater through my legs while I tried to walk or wanting to partake in chores as he sat on my hip (mostly pouring Skinny Pirates and applying lipstick) but he does love to assist…

…with laundry…

…with dishwasher loading…

…and unloading…

…and letting me know when the shitter’s full.

He even started presenting me with lavish gifts only a pussy could deliver to his mother.

Prancing in one night with a cardinal in his mouth while I was relaxing in the bath.

He proudly corralled tampons like John Wayne did cowboys.

Once, he even tried to reenact scenes from my favorite crime show, Forensic Files, by creating an outline of his body in a bush, as he misjudged it being a solid surface.

Forensic feline body outline.

As life tends to twist and turn, shit hit the fan after our first three years together. I went through what might as well have been a divorce, losing a long-term relationship, my house, my job AND getting to move in with my parents all in the same week.

WHAT. THE. ACTUAL. FUCK.

Trying to get back up on my own paws, I moved four times in three years. During this tumultuous time in life, Ted remained steadfast by my side. Although he continued to be high maintenance as fuck, making his mother stress to the max about her sidekick literally kicking the bucket. Among his many ailments:

Kitty Celiac Disease which forces me to feed my cat rather than myself the week his food runs out.

Fancy fucking feast.

Bi-yearly upper respiratory infections that always allow us a road trip to the vet.

Kitty colds suck.

And often require overnight stays for fluids.

Skin sensitivity at the most random times of the year.

Also, requiring visits to the vet, along with medication.

In more than one place, at different times naturally.

Resting bitch face.

No cost for me.

Motion sickness that was a super fun thing to discover.

The utmost dignity for the unattractive regurgitating of food in his mother’s lap.

A case of curiosity as he went missing from the mini manse for 24 hours and I spent my last dime making color copies and plastering car windshields in my apartment complex.

Every. single. car. But worth the $300, as he was found.

Fleas…after being outside one time in his entire life. It was like he had a one night stand….with fucking fleas.

This dip was fun before a trip to the vet.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease that took three weeks to uncover through exploratory surgery, endless testing and finally the right medications.

The gift that keeps on giving.

Congestive heart failure brought on by the steroid medications he was put on for Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

Which also took weeks of fun in the kitty ICU to uncover.

He’s been living with congestive heart failure for over a year now, which requires five medications daily, that I shove down his throat in a ball of cheese.

My own version of Walter White’s lab.

We single-handedly keep our veterinary’s lights on, where Ted is a motherfucking celebrity. He is their fave patient (most likely because we pay their mortgage bills).

Ted with his loyal and loving vet tech, Danielle.

Why go this far for my baby? Why the fuck wouldn’t I?

In the last two years, I’ve lost a career I’d spent years building, I lost the type of immediate family I thought would never be shaken, I lost friends who chose sides, I lost emotional, mental and financial stability I thought I’d created for myself. And then, I was raped. So this cat (and I want to punch people in the throat who say “it’s just a cat”), is – and has been my knight in shining armor.

Sometimes a smothering knight in shining armor.

He greets me at the door daily. He eats, shits, commands all of the attention, helps me put my make-up on every morning, sunbathes on his terrace daily, sleeps on my chest, demands the food in his martini glass be filled to the brim so as not to strain his neck, enjoys an occassional glass of wine (kidding…kind of…I mean he is my cat).

This little love has put up with his big hearted mother and accepted the siblings introduced – who KNOW the pecking order of the mini manse. It’s like the seas part and Ted’s fucking Moses when any of my other four fur balls are on my lap and the Bear decides he’d like to sit there instead.

My pussy posse.

Adding to the brood just made the love grown. And animal rescuing always begs the question…who rescued whom?

Currently his home on my chest remains the same when I’m flat on my back. Although now, due to his congestive heart failure,  he’s like a sprinkler system, as every time he exhales through his nose, my face gets a hydrating snot mist (I should probably bottle this up and sell it). It’s even more adorable when I’m yawning and he occasionally sneezes into my mouth. It’s like a snot shot.

#relationship goals

We’ve kept one another going during the shit show of our lives over the past several years. I seriously look this pussy in the face (and you know you’re not supposed to do that because cats can see into your soul but let’s be real, mine’s still dark and twisty so there’s no harm done) and instruct him to hang on as long as possible.

You go, I go.

Thing is, without the constant companionship and unconditional love of the bitchiest feline on the planet, I may have ceased my emotional fight. Sound crazy? I don’t give a fuck. This pussy and I have been through the good, the bad, the ugly and the worst.

Shoulders to lean on.

From all of my family and all of my friends, Teddy’s lead my army in putting this busted ass version of Humpty Dumpty back together again. And while I may be trying to pay off pussy debt well into my golden years, he’s worth every goddamn penny.

He sure as shit knows it, too.

Our goodbyes in the morning on my way out the mini manse to work go something like this, “I love you Baby Bear. Don’t go dying on me.”

I’m going no where…you’ve purchased me an additional 46 lives.

Phew.

I think I’ve earned a bumper sticker that reads “My fur kid costs just as much as your human spawn.” Because there’s no one else in life I would rather have in the driver’s seat with me.

All aboard for the shit show.

Cheers!

CBXB

CBXB!

 

 

 

Master of the Mini Manse

It seems just like yesterday that I welcomed the furball love of my life Teddy Bear into my mini manse.

After the first feline object of my affection, Nicodeamus passed away (and I truly thought I would die of a broken heart), I laid eyes on Ted via the Nashville Cat Rescue’s website.  He’d been saved from a one bedroom apartment full of 30 cats (I thought I was a hoarder) and when I went to take a look at that sweet little face, it was love at first meow.

Me and my garfield

Instantly wrapped around his paw.

Upon bringing TB home, I had a partially screened in porch.  My new little prince had such a sweet, timid demeanor I allowed him to relax on the porch alone, taking in his new surroundings.

Soaking up the sun

Soaking up the sun.

After a few months, Tedstar suddenly came out of his meek shell, morphing into a tiny lion, deciding that he was King of the Jungle Porch. One evening while I was letting Calgon take me away in a bubble bath, His Royal Highness ‘presented’ me with a beautiful, live cardinal fidgeting around in his mouth.

Feathers flew.

Feathers flew.

I screamed bloody murder at the horror of seeing a blinking bird in the jaws of my supposedly shy Teddy Bear. Then I thought my poor pussy’s muzzle was going to break because his mouth was open so wide. I stood there naked, sopping wet with trauma tears (because I didn’t want to have to feed Ted through a straw the rest of his life due to breaking his face trying to release and save our feathered friend that most likely carried bird flu) streaking down my face when he wouldn’t let the cardinal go until a towel was thrown over his head. (For those of you holding your breath or shedding a tear over the bird, it lived).

Noooooooo!

You guys, the bird! Teddy’s jaw! My BATH!

A very relaxing, spa-like evening indeed.

Once Ted had a whiff of wildness, he got very daring after The Great Bird Incident.  One afternoon Bear attempted to escape the awful prison I keep him in by leaping off the porch to a nearby bush (about four feet away) which turned out like this:

Body outline

Body outline of my ferocious feline.

He’d climbed to the porch railing and apparently thought the bush was sturdy enough to hold him (Teddy sometimes has blonde moments like his mother) but alas he sunk all the way down to the bottom.  It was super fun trying to get a hysterical cat out of the tangle of limbs.

After his failed prison break, the porch was promptly screened to the ceiling, preventing my blue blooded attack cat from parting ways with yours truly (he obviously loved his new home).

blah

My detainee’s private jail cell.

Of course Tedstar continually looked for a way out but much to his dismay, I locked that shit down like Fort Knox.

Don't jump

Does curiosity kill?

Presently in my mini-catsle, I’m the evil queen happy to keep my royal subject Ted preserved behind second balcony porch bars, knowing that I won’t have any unwelcome gifts or a clumsy cat stuck in a bush.

Still trying to leave me.  Good thing his fur isn’t as long as Rapunzel’s hair.

Trying to persuade my fave pussy from walking the second story proverbial plank, I christened the porch in honor of Mr. Bear.

Properly named perch.

Properly named perch.

Highly unimpressed with a 2 x 4 wood sign, Teddy still thinks there might be a chance to break free, walking on the backs of chairs like he’s a high wire act in the circus.

How can I pounce out?

Now that I’ve introduced three new court jesters into our royal family, I have a feeling they’ll be putting their furry noggins together to thwart my attempts to keep them behind my gated tower.

Court jesters.

The new pussies on the porch prowl.

Now, who’s the real master of the mini manse?

I think we all already know the answer.

CBXB

CBXB!