It's crazy to think how one small being can change your world. I know, I am sounding like a crazy cat lady here, but bear with me on this one!
As I sit here writing this, rocking away in the recliner that we have had for years, I can't help but think of how in a few months I will be sitting here rocking our first human baby in my arms. It's almost surreal to me right now, but I know it will be here before I know it. You're probably wondering what that has to do with our little Princess Olive turning one, so let me tell you!
I brought Olive into our lives somewhat on a whim. We had discussed getting a cat many, many, many times over the past 4 years at the time, but we never got one because we disagreed on living situation. I wanted a barn cat to help keep the mice from jumping around in the hay and taking me by surprise all the time, and he wanted a house cat. It just so happened one of my distant relatives had a litter of kittens and their photos kept popping up in my feed. For weeks I would see their cute faces as they grew up and thought how cute they were. When Brandon's birthday rolled around, I really couldn't think of anything good to get him for a gift with all the wedding planning going on at the time. So one day, after scrolling facebook and seeing the cute faces in need of a home, I decided to reach out and plan to get one. I thought I wanted a boy, but when I found out he wasn't available, I decided a girl would be just fine too.
While I typically share everything with Brandon, I made arrangements in secret to get our new baby. I even gathered the supplies we would need and hid them so everything would be ready for her when I brought her home. The reaction I received when I walked in the door (with her clawing her way in fear on top of my head from the dogs!) was not what I expected. He told me to "take it back," definitely a let down from all my planning! But less than half an hour later he was cuddled up with her on the couch, trying to comfort her fear of her new surroundings and the big "scary" dogs. Since that day, Olive has become a very well loved, possibly spoiled, part of our family. She receives equal devotion from both of us, because she is the first pet we have truly raised together. In the past year she has become our precious little Princess Olive, and we have treated her like a child in more ways than one. From treats, to gifts, to "fighting" over who she loves more (yes, this happens on a regular occurrence!) and lots and lots of snuggles, she certainly lives the life here and rules the house. And thankfully, through the completely unconditional and relentless lovingness of Jax, she also loves her canine siblings too (he sacrificed a few swats to the nose in the first week but his loving kisses won her over in the end).
With all the spoiling, I mean loving, we show Olive, when her first birthday came up, I just had to make a big deal about it and plan a whole big birthday photo shoot just for our precious girl. I spent weeks planning out what the scene would look like, finding the perfect birthday outfit for her, and looking up recipes for her "cake." Brandon thought I had gone off the deep end, but he has learned not to try and stop me from my photographic desires because I just make them happen anyway! Probably the only complaint Olive could possibly have about her living circumstances, is when I decide to dress her up in things, like her birthday outfit. Fortunately she is always quick to forgive me! In typical spoiled fashion, after I spent all that time finding a cake recipe for her, she of course snubbed the whole thing and barely ate a bite. I just laughed and thought of some of the kiddos I have photographed over the years that snubbed their cake at their birthday photo shoot, suddenly realizing how their parents must have felt. She may be a cat, but she sure knows how to keep us on our toes, something I have no doubt this little one I am carrying will do too when they arrive.
I may have brought home Olive on a whim, but the child that will arrive in a few months was prayed for, planned for, and has been deeply wanted for a long time. Knowing how much our lives have changed with our cat, I can't even begin to imagine how much our lives will change when we become parents to a baby that doesn't have fur. I do know one thing is for certain though, our child will be looked upon as a blessing to our lives, rejoiced over, cried over, possibly spoiled(ok, very likely spoiled by me), and know every single day, how deeply loved they are by both of us.