So, I think the 'delightful' feline has decided to give me her version of training-for-baby. She doesn't think in terms of my already rampant insomnia, she's just trying to do her part.
11pm, I slide off into slumber. Not fitfully, but a little tossing and turning. My norm for sleep. The wife, bless her pregnant little soul, twitches into sleep...further arresting my normal nocturnal rhythm.
1:30am; the cat decides she wishes to aid the east in its time of crisis. How, may you ask? Well she doesn't know either, though she does know she wants to get there...by digging her way through her litter box. Little comprehension of distance, she just 'knows' Japan is on the other side of the world, and that the world is under her litter box. She digs...and digs...and digs...sounding all the world like an earth mover breaking up concrete. Survival instinct kicks in (something I usually think she lacks), and she stops right around the time I achieve full consciousness and begin to contemplate her demise.
2:30am; Crinkle Balls (scientific name, I'm sure). Those foil balls that make noises a cat finds irresistible. Those toys that she loses, with great regularity, beneath the stove. Those toys she has lost all of in the last few days, and whined at us to find for her. We've learned to NOT find any for her near bed time. Apparently she has decided the entertainment of my crackling joints (and grunts of ire) were worth missing out on (sounds she enjoys thoroughly as I root around under said stove for her every morn) in the interest of my training. She has performed a feat worthy of great spite, and acquired one from the dusty depths of our kitchen cave, on her own. She seemed to have quietly, and with great malice-aforethought, carried it gently up the stairs...quietly deposited it upon the door jam and POUNCED...and POUNCED...and POUNCED. A sound, not unlike the crashing of glass to a sleep addled mind, exploded from the doorway. Adrenaline rush had me out of bed before I knew what'd hit me. She rocketed down the stairs and I, well I stumbled to the offending toy and hid it...hopefully I never remember where.
3(ish)am; Galloping. I don't know where this animal has acquired her desire to evince a sudden lack of lazy, but she HAS learned how to gallop. The downstairs sound like a Lipizzaner show.
4(ish)am; Suddenly feeling guilt at the slow growth of her waistline (winter weight you know), the cat decides to implement her excercise program. It's a stair routine. To my muddled mind, it sounds as though the Lipizzaners have moved to the stairwell... and as we all know, a cardio workout needs at LEAST 15 minutes to have an impact.
5(ish)am; My bladder summons me (though why now, and not at any of the myriad previous interruptions I don't know) and I answer its call. At the foot of the bed, the cat decides it is 'daddy play-time', and sets up in ambush. Great feet stride around the corner of the bed, as the cat's Goliath trudges near. I can envision, under the bed (now that I am up) the tail-twitch, the anticipation, the patience of the great hunter as her prey approaches...yet at 5am, all my mind is saying is 'bed...must get back to bed...sleep...must regain sleep'. I round the bottom of the bed, make my turn in preparation to crash back into a blissfull null-state, when sudden SHARPS penetrate the top of my foot...my calf...and my adrenal glands pump a quart of 'WAKE UP' into my bloodstream.
Again, the survival instinct (that I never knew existed) kicked in on the filthy feline, and she took off at Mach-5 for the downstairs. I am neither amused, nor awake enough to pursue.
6:30(ish)am; It is my day off. I have not set a single alarm. In an optimistic mindset (something that has been disabused at this juncture) the night prior, I looked forward to sleeping in until 7-8ish. I reveled in the thought.
CRASH...THUMP...CLAW...'mrowp'...the cat has leaped to the top of the dresser at the foot of MY side of the bed, and decided to claw her way through curtain, and glass, to get at the birds on the other side of the bedroom window. At this point, my body decides to override my mind's attempt to stay asleep. Adrenaline flows, once again, and I am up...hissing...and chasing feline before my brain can tell the rest of me to just 'shut up and go back to sleep'. The cat has managed, before my feet even touch the floor, to cover the length of the bedroom (without touching the floor) in the time it takes me to blink. I fall back into the tortuous teasing device called 'bed'.
6:35am; Dammit...I'm awake.
I stumble downstairs to make coffee in a desperate attempt to compensate for lack of sleep.
The cat follows me down the stairs (where the hell WAS she?). She looks up at me with desire, and follows me all the way...to the drawer...that contains her toys.
I consider killing her...
I begin to reach for her...
and then I see an empty food dish. Utterly empty. Not even dust.
I let her live.
You see, I gave her too much credit. I thought SHE was trying to train me for incoming infant insomnia...
It was her Mother, my Wife.
I stood there, contemplating going upstairs and smothering her with a pillow (as she never ONCE awoke last night, as I battled cats, rampaging Huns and horse shows)...
Sometime, in the next 18years, my wife needs to take our child out and buy it whatever it wants...to thank it for saving her life.