Monday, March 21, 2011

Cats and Kittens

I have come to the conclusion that a major difference between men and women has to do with cats and kittens. Women love babies. They love everything about them...the smell, the soft fatty spots, the tiny fingers and toes. We love to kiss them and snuggle them. Men like looking at babies. They will hold them carefully, do the Daddy thing, (we all have that picture of Daddy sleeping on the couch with the baby on his chest). But they really don’t get the parenting thing until the kid starts toddling and can actually play.

My husband was great with the babies. With the third, I worked nights so he was feeding, bathing and reading the nighttime story. And he was good at it. But he really started to shine as a parent when they could toss balls or run around the yard. The kids' favorite game was pretending to run out of the yard towards the street and Daddy would run after them. We thought this was a great game. We never actually let them run into the street and oncoming traffic. Yes, we were great parents.

I’m not saying that I was better with the babies and that he was better with the older kids. We were a team, each stepping in to take over for the other when needed. But as I’ve grown older I sometimes look at these adult children and I really miss the babies. I miss the kisses beneath the ear, the giggles emitted from deep in the belly. I miss blowing on the belly. I miss holding the baby so close that the baby fine hairs tickle my nose as I take in the scent that if it could be bottled would make someone billions.

Maybe it’s because it was easy. Feed, wash, sleep, and again. No major decisions, no, 'where should I go to college,' 'what should I study,' 'who should I date?' No 'what car should I buy,' 'where should I live,' 'how do you get over a broken heart?'

Maybe it’s the one good thing about getting older. You remember the past with rose colored glasses. The struggles of the kitten years are romanticized, as if glancing at the memories through densely placed clouds.

But men seem to shine in the cat years. Perhaps it’s that logical mind compared to the quixotic point of view. Whatever it is, it works.

And maybe that’s why God gave us grandkids, because as we get older we need that infusion of baby powder and innocence. We get the kitten years, but luckily there are others out there that will deal with the cat years!!!

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