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My First Year With My Cat, D.W.!


It has been exactly almost a year to the day since I adopted my cat, D.W.! I can’t believe it- time has gone by so fast! She’s been such a source of joy, love, and frankly, some annoyance (let’s be honest here), but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

A few months before I adopted D.W. last year, my cat of 14 years, Harriet, had passed away. Even though my family adopted her as a family pet, Harriet chose me and she was my cat and I was her person, so losing her was just devastating. I honestly didn’t think I would get a cat for a long, long time after her death. So it was incredibly surprising that D.W. came into my life not long after and I have to admit, having a new kitty to care for really helped me process and get through Harriet’s passing.

I initially saw a kitten on Facebook from a person I knew who took in rescue cats and kittens and thought instantly, “That’s my cat!” The kitten was the sweetest looking thing, white with grey and black spots. I just had to meet her. So I arranged to see her over at this lady’s house, where she has a whole KITTEN ROOM. I repeat: SHE HAS A KITTEN ROOM. She opened the door and a flood of kittens rushed out and stampeded down the hall. Trust me, it was the cutest sight you’ve ever seen in your life. It’s what I imagine my version of heaven to look like. Just a bunch of kittens racing towards me. Sigh.

But when I got there, the adorable kitten I wanted to see, was so shy that she avoided me! I got to hold her at one point (she was so tiny!), but other than that, I didn’t see her at all. I figured she might come around eventually, so I decided to check out the other, less shy kittens in the meantime. There was this one kitten who was all white, a lot like Harriet as a kitten, who was being silly and rolling around the floor. I thought it was cute so I snapped a few pictures along with some of the other kittens too.

I tried to play with a few of the other kittens, when I heard a cute little “mew.” I was sitting on the couch and turned to my left where I saw that little white kitten jump on the couch and walk over towards me. She (they confirmed she was a girl) was so curious and sweet, trying to sniff me and kept kitten-mewing at me for attention. She was purring like crazy and did this numerous times and I just couldn’t help it: I completely forgot about the other shy kitten that I initially wanted and I fell in love with this rambunctious white kitten. It was like she chose me and knew that this was meant to be. And it was.

In July, I got to take her home (she was so tiny! You forget how tiny kittens are when you first get them!) and she’s been such a fun and loving part of my family ever since. She’s certainly livened up the house and is so entertaining to watch and play with. I’m so lucky to have her and can’t imagine having any other cat but her. So in honor of this big one year anniversary, I wanted to list some fun facts, trivia, and mini stories about this silly kitten, now cat. Here we go!
  • Before she came home, I tried to think of a cute name for her. Names are a big deal for a new pet! Do I go with a Harry Potter name? Luna, for Luna Lovegood? Something more Harry Potter-obscure for the purists like me, like Winky? (That poor house elf that cruelly got left out of the movies. And pretty much just had a cruel life, in general. The injustice of it all!) But then it hit me: my favorite TV show from when I was a kid: Arthur! Not the name Arthur, but the name of his little sister, D.W.! (Which stands for Dora Winifred, by the way) D.W. is just a precocious, sassy, and annoying character of a little girl, that I thought the name was perfect. And boy, was it perfect! Because my D.W. is just as sassy, precocious, and annoying as her namesake!
PBS
  • D.W. came home with a crusty nose, an eye infection, and ear mites! Yuck! Do you know how gross ear mites are?? My vet let me look at them under the microscope. I wanted to say “how dare you for living in my kitten’s ears!” I also learned she hates medicine of any kind and going to the vet and will do anything it takes to avoid the thermometer up the butt. I have to say, I don’t blame her...
  • She absolutely loves to nurse and knead on her soft blanket but when she was a kitten she tried to nurse on my neck! She ended up giving me a hickey that way! I literally had a hickey on my neck given to me by a tiny baby feline. So weird. And awkward to explain: “No, no, my cat gave me this. Yes, I know that sounds wrong…”
  • She loves loves loves her big sister Violet (aka my mom’s cat). D.W. wants to play or cuddle with her all the time. Violet can only stand a little bit of it before she nopes outta there. But it is super cute to see them cuddling together!
  • D.W. loves to meet new people and show off. She instantly wants to be friends with everyone and will make a big deal of playing and trying to scratch the furniture or join everyone at the table if we’re eating there.
  • Loves to be a typical cat. Knocking things off of my shelves or dresser is her favorite thing. Especially in the middle of the night when I’m trying to sleep. (Good thing she’s cute…)
  • Loves to eat but doesn’t like kitty treats (oddly enough). If you leave a glass of anything liquid out, she’ll stick her face in and try to either taste it or drink it. Other things she has tried to drink: Dr. Pepper, V8 juice, and juice with Miralax in it (don’t ask).
  • Wants to see the great outdoors aka escape outside. Whether it’s the front yard, backyard, or even the garage, she’s escaped and I’ve spent many minutes frantically scrambling after her, heart racing. Maybe it’s time for a harness and a leash?
  • Will jump up on the bed in the morning and cuddle with me, right when I know I need to get up. I think she knows I can’t resist a few kitty cuddles, even if that means I’m going to be late. Adorable, but annoying.
  • She will let me rub her tummy. Which is a big deal, because I love all cat bellies and always feel the urge to bury my face in their floofy tummies. Which is usually a death sentence, but not with D.W.
  • Is basically just an overgrown kitten. She still loves to play, cuddle, and nap, and just has the sweetest disposition. Sometimes. Usually.
All that being said, I feel like the luckiest human in the world for getting to have this great, sweet, slightly overweight (I call her a hefty honey), stubborn, quirky, loyal, and adorable kitten now cat in my life. She’s brought me so much happiness and love. I can’t wait to see what the next year is like and what adventures we’ll have next!

And in honor of her one year anniversary with me, I’ve included a before and after picture of her. On the left is the day I first got her, last year in 2018, and on the right is a couple of days ago.

That Weird Girl Life
Look how much she’s grown! My heart can’t take it!

Thank you for reading this probably overly long post about my cat! I love her to bits, so I just can’t help it! Do you have any pets? What was your first year with them like? Any fun stories? Let me know in the comments!

Stay Weird,
Emily

A Brief History Of My Blog, That Weird Girl Life


You may not know this, but my blog, in one form or another, has been around for a while. Years, in fact. I believe I first started my blog back in 2014. That’s five years I’ve had this blog! But just because it’s now known as That Weird Girl Life, doesn’t mean that it started that way. It actually started as my bucket list blog (which I think I creatively titled Emily’s Bucket List BlogSo unique and original!)

Sadly, I no longer has this very long list of my 2014 bucket list (because, trust me, it was very 2014!), but I do remember some of the random items I had on my list:

  • Befriend an elephant (I’ve always loved elephants and not only did I want to meet one, I always wanted to have a special connection with one)
  • Meet Benedict Cumberbatch (again, this was 2014 and I was very into Sherlock and had finally understood the attractiveness after seeing him on the show)
  • Visit various places around the world but mostly Europe (England, Scotland- to find the Loch Ness Monster, of course, and to go to France and stay in a French chateau. Of. Course)

Some were way more likely and plausible to happen, others, not so much. It was fun to put more accessible and easy items on the list, like tie dye for the first time, watch all eight Harry Potter movies in one day, and bake cookies in the car during the summer (all of which I did!), but after seeing my gigantic list of things I’ll probably never accomplish in my life, my blog then shifted into another form: travel blog (another new title for my blog! This one was just as unique and lovely: Emily Ann Travels. I’m cringing just at the thought)

A travel blog seemed like a more grown up and less silly, but at the same time, having a silly bucket list blog where I could actually do some things, like tie dying and baking cookies in the hot car, seems like it would have been like something I could actually accomplish, especially since I didn’t even have the money to travel at the time! But my family had taken a few trips, and I thought, well, why not make my blog into a cosmopolitan and hip travel blog? No one cares about a silly bucket list and me meeting Benedict Cumberbatch (which I would never even do by the way. I have never met a celebrity before and because I’m so shy and awkward, I can only imagine how horrible that meeting would go. I think it’s just best if I just see celebs in movies, on TV, or from a distance). But travel? That’s where it was at!

But after a trip to Las Vegas with my family and Universal Studios in Florida with my sister (to go to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and Disney World, obviously), I really didn’t do any other traveling. At all. So what was I do to with my blog now?

After taking a bit of a break, in 2016 I came back full force! I revamped my blog and made it: That Weird Girl Life (mostly because I was desperate for a name and wanted to embrace my weirdness and it was the first thing that popped in my head and it just kind of stuck). I decided to focus on books, adventures, and life. This is when my blog really started to get a little bit of attention (and by attention, I mean that I put effort into social media and trying to put my blog out there). I got to review books from authors who contacted me and sent me their books (which was such a fun and cool experience!) and I was writing book recommendations, lists, and reviews. I was writing about the odd trips and adventures I had (I got to go to England- though I didn’t go to Scotland and find Nessie, and France-nor did I stay in a French chateau) and visit the Exorcist steps in Georgetown, Washington DC- I’m a huge horror fan, so this was a must!), and was just writing about anything I was interested in general! Books, Harry Potter, horror movies and books, and I even started opening up a little about my mental health (but not too much). It was such a fun time for me. I felt like my creative juices were flowing, I was engaged on social media, promoting my blog, connecting with others, and just kind of living my best life. Was I earning money from it? Not really. But I was inspired by the bloggers who were and aspired to be just like them. Then, something just kind of stopped working for me.

In 2017, at the end of the year, around Thanksgiving, my laptop died. I was trying to blog and be consistent with posting, but once my laptop went to electronics heaven, I had to stop. Something else was brewing, too. I had dealt with mental illness for most of my life, and I felt like something wasn’t right. It was almost like the moment my laptop died, something was confirmed. I was depressed again.

I stopped blogging entirely. Even when I got a new laptop, I just couldn’t. The words wouldn’t come and I didn’t have the passion to do it. I even stopped reading books (this was how I knew I was depressed. If I’m not reading, something is seriously wrong). I just couldn’t. Thankfully though, in 2018, I started seeing a new therapist and went on a new antidepressant, which helped so much. So much so that, in April of this year (2019, if you are reading this in the future. Hello from the past!), I opened up my laptop, logged onto my blog, and started to write again. Which now leads us to my blog’s current version: That Weird Girl Life 2.0 aka a fresh start.

With this new transformation of my blog, comes the best part: the honesty of it. I’ve become determined to be more open about my struggles with mental illness, in the hopes of lessening the shame that comes with mental health, and the years and years I’ve felt that shame hold me down. I want to become an advocate for mental health awareness and hopefully inspire others to speak out so we can lessen this taboo and learn to talk about it more openly.

And the second best part? I’m just going to have fun with it! I’m going to write about what I want, SEO and blog traffic be damned, and just hope that I reach an audience who will enjoy reading it as much as I love writing it. Because I’m a weirdo who likes writing about the weird things I love and I just can’t help it. I hope you’ll follow along on this new version of the blog with me. It’ll be a grand adventure for all of us and hopefully an enjoyingly (not a real word but it works here so forgive me) weird read for you.

I hope you enjoyed this what was meant to be a brief history of my blog, but turned into a rather long history of my blog. Thank you for reading That Weird Girl Life and for all of your support, whether it’s been through the years, or just starting now. Either way, I appreciate it.

Stay Weird,
Emily