Thursday, November 15, 2007

The Long and Silent Battle

Continued . . .

The war began when he blurted I win every argument we ever have.  The object was no longer about a cat, it was the fact that he could pinpoint one of my major human flaws.  He was right.  I do normally win every battle there is to fight in our relationship, but for the most part he can manipulate me into thinking his way is just another avenue to get my way.  I set out to prove to him that I would not fight with him, because I really didn't want to be proven once again to get my way.  Did I want a cat?  Yes, but I did not want a cat at the expense of our relationship.  I'd much rather have a happy husband than a cuddly cat.  Did I secretly hope he'd love me enough to go out and steal my little kitty back from the afore mentioned undeserving household he originally came from or find another little kitten?  Yes, but I also knew there were other issues to be dealt with first. 

As it turned out, he had begun a cold the night he stepped through the door, saw the kitten, and sneezed.  So it was still unclear as to the status of his allergies.  I did some research and found out you can drastically reduce the symptoms by cleaning daily and using special HEPA filters via vacuum or air purifiers.  We did not have anything HEPA but I looked into them (along with the prices of return tickets to the states, the cost of shots, food, litter, and passport).  I also began the routine of daily cleaning according the standards it would take to keep the allergens down to minimum.  All this I did in silence.  Though I have to admit I hoped he'd notice the cleaning.  He did and when he asked I mentioned the fact that I'd looked up how to keep allergens to a min.  He said nothing more.  At some point I became ill and, satisfied that I could keep to the rigorous cleaning schedule and that he was no longer interested in my attempts, I stopped.  Why clean so hard when you don't actually have the allergens to deal with in the first place?

The kids were set on a kitten though and brought up the topic repeatedly.  They also were rebuked by their father and soon they held their heads as low as mine, but I would often hear them mumbling amongst themselves solemnly, "we can't get a cat because daddy is allergic."  I refused to encourage them and started bracing myself, like them, never to have a cat.  Okay, so I wasn't completely silent about the issue.  At one time I do remember mentioning something along the lines of "I will never have a cat, at least not until you die or I'm stuck in a nursing home."  But surely he understood that as an irrational outburst during an overdue heated conversation about this silent issue, right?

I refused to blame him for our lonely circumstance.  He had not shown signs of allergy to cats after he'd been taking the allergy shots for a while, but you never know if the trick worked until you've tested it after having not had the shots for a while.  He also had experienced the same wild and obnoxious trailer park cats and certainly that memory still weighed heavily on the side against getting a cat.  He was also reasonable to consider the cost of a cat and the difficulties it could bring in finding a place to live once we get back into the states.  Though ,after talking with a friend back in the states who has two cats of her own, I had my friend have her husband send my husband an email detailing their easy experiences with finding an apartment.  Surely it was just happenstance that we broached this topic and upon hearing my yearning desires nothing could keep her from forcing her husband to write this letter . . .

Maintain my silence I did.  I kept quiet until I was quite certain the time of kittens was long gone and even if he did want to surprise us he would never be able to find a kitten until next summer.  All hope was lost and I began my silent mourning.  It was painful to know I would never have a kitten, but I would not let him know.  I would only let my tears fall silently down my cheeks in hopes that he wouldn't see.  He did and mentioned that he'd even considered getting us our own kitty, but that I didn't seem to be able to keep the house clean.  Maybe a normal wife would have gotten on her knees, begged, and promised to keep the house clean if only she could get a precious little kitty.  Instead I took quite an offense at this and seeing as the time of kittens had already passed I opened the floodgates and began the argument anew. 

"I will not barter to get a kitten.  I will not promise to keep the house spotless in return for payment of a kitten.  And why keep the house spotless when the house is barren of kitten presence anyway?"

Famous last words . . .

No comments: