I was born on an Amish farm in the middle of winter. I divided my time during my first six weeks between playing with my siblings and nursing when I could.
Sometimes my mother wasn’t around, and the six of us youngsters pushed each other aside to drink the trickle of cow’s milk that dripped down from the metal pipes carrying it away from the cows, away from us. There wasn’t much milk, but it at least sometimes it quenched our thirst.
One day an older cat wanted the milk I was lapping from the pipes. He rushed toward me and I lost my footing and fell. I—with all of my 3 pounds—jumped on his back, expecting him to tussle playfully like my brothers and sisters. He had other ideas, though, and bit off a chunk of my ear. I learned to be wary.
Over time my stomach became swollen and filled with worms. I was always hungry, and I became sickly and quiet. The barn was icy cold, and the wind crept through the cracks.
One winter day a man and woman came to the farm. They looked different from the people I had known—no long skirt, no hat. They spoke with the farmer. The farmer’s little boys found me and delivered me to them. The woman told the boys that the kitten was going live in a house. The boys, wide-eyed, said, “Nooo!” “Yes,” she said laughing, “and the kitten is going sleep on a bed.” “Noooo,” they said, and squinted at her as if she might be crazy.
To be continued…
For Part II: https://untoldanimalstories.org/2013/09/20/part-ii-i-was-born-on-an-amish-farm-in-the-middle-of-winter/