Tuesday, August 21, 2007

A Baby Versus A Pet

At 2 1/2 yrs old, I think it's safe to say that Anneliese is no longer a baby. She's still snuggly and cuddly and sweet, but every day she becomes more of a Big Kid. I can't express adequately how sad that makes me. I can't explain how truly full of sorrow I am that in all likelihood, I will not have another baby. After all this time, I still feel as if our family isn't quite complete, and is missing someone. Perhaps this is due to the fact that I still occasionally think about the miscarriage I had before becoming pregnant with Anneliese, but I tend to think it's because I feel as if there's a space after Anneliese that's missing.

I managed to put those feelings aside for the past several months, or at least ignored them half-way decently. With Juliana's 7th birthday approaching quickly, I'm finding that it's hard to ignore the feeling.

During the past month, I've been finding myself trying to convince The Husband that getting a kitten or even a fricking hamster would be a good idea for the kids. He's all about the expense, since clearly I'd be the one responsible for the caring of said pet. I'd be delighted to care for a small baby pet of ANY sort. I know the benefits to children and families that have pets, and I've always enjoyed certain small animals. It's not just about Baby Fever. If it were, then I think I'd be feeling "I would love a pet OR a baby." Ha ha. Oooh, there's an argument for The Husband. Gimme a baby or gimme a pet.

But seriously, the girls have been asking for a pet that's not a fish. Grace in particular wants any of the following: hamster, kitten, puppy. Anneliese is even asking for a kitten. I would love to have a house cat, especially if it were a lap cat. My favorite cats are Snowshoes, especially since they're known to be wonderful family pets and very good around children.
When we were at Harkness Park this past Sunday, Grace actually went over to an older married couple that brought their 12-week old puppy to the park, and she asked questions about it! She asked if she could play with him! I was so happy that she did that, that I got very teary-eyed. I know that a pet would be great for Gracie, perhaps even therapeutic. I've always said that Grace would be our little veterinarian. Since babyhood, she's been the one of my children who has always loved animals, and shown healthy wariness of them without it becoming anxiety or fear.
I'm admittedly not a huge animal lover. I enjoy some animals. I believe in animal rights, and I believe that certain animals do make wonderful pets. I do understand the attachment to pets, though. They're living, breathing beings that feel emotions as strongly as you or I. They're warm bodied buddies that earn a special place in the family and the heart. I may not much enjoy Other People's animals, but I know that I'd love my own, just as I love my children. The more I think about it, the more I think we should do this. Now I just have to convince The Husband, because I'm not the type to just go out and surprise him with a pet, or get one without his agreeing. Off to make the argument! Although I can guarantee, making a pitch for a bird will NOT be included. They're just creepy.

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