Murray is fat. And for the longest time we’ve tried to ignore the fact that we may have had anything to do with It. I’ve suggested that he’s overweight because he steals food from us. I’ve blamed the baby for sneaking food to him. I’ve even suggested that Murray is overweight because of being bottle-fed.
Certainly he’s fat because he was bottle-fed.
A couple of months ago, someone suggested that Murray is fat due to genetics. I mentioned this to Toby.
“You should ask the woman who adopted Murray’s sister if her cat is fat too.”
I thought about this. But how would Kate feel if some strange and potentially crazy cat lady emailed her about her cat?
Hey there. My name is Michele. I know we don’t know each other very well and we’ve never actually met in person, but I adopted Eleanor’s brother, Murray. How are you? How is Eleanor? Is she fat?
How would she respond? Would she immediately write back saying, “OMG! YES! ELEANOR IS HUGE! Let’s schedule a play date!” Would she suggest I get a life? I just didn’t feel right about bugging her about the weight of her feline. Plus, I think I secretly wanted to blame Murray’s expanding gut on genetics. Basically, if I never knew the truth, I could forever blissfully assume that Murray was fat because of his mother and father and not because of what I had or hadn’t done.
On Saturday I went to the Empty Cages Collective adoption event at Muddy Paws. While there, I finally met Kate, Eleanor’s mum.
“Kate! It’s so nice to meet you! How is Eleanor?” I asked.
She explained that Eleanor is equally as insane and strange and amazing and awesome and hilarious as Murray. We swapped stories about their eccentric nature. We joked about whether or not they would recognize one another. The more we spoke, the more I realized that our cats, separated very early on, were still oddly similar.
Perhaps they are so genetically similar that Eleanor is fat too?
And so I asked. “Kate, is Eleanor fat?”
She immediately shook her head. “Oh, no, not at all. Eleanor is not fat at all. The opposite actually. She’s actually quite skinny. I think it’s because she never stops moving!”
I nodded. Murray moves around a lot as well but sleeps as much. I wanted to ask her if Eleanor eats Entenmann’s, banana nut muffins, pancakes, corn, broccoli, waffles, and scrambled eggs. I wanted to ask her if Eleanor steels food whenever she isn’t paying attention. I wanted to ask her if Eleanor licks sticks of butter, oiled pans, and muffin holders.
But Eleanor is fit. Murray’s sister is svelte. Murray isn’t fat because he was bottle fed—Eleanor was bottle fed as well. Murray isn’t fat because our son likes to give him tiny bits of waffles. And genetics apparently have nothing to do with Murray’s expanding waistline.
I fear I have run out of excuses.
I’m the mother of the fat kid and the only thing I have left to blame it on is me.