The Contemporary New England Witch

The Contemporary New England Witch
Ms Faith

Friday, December 3, 2010

Happy Birthday Kittens of Enchantments!!

 Good Evening,

I have a story I want to share with you.  It's about the cats I have living at Enchantments and how they came to be here.  Two years ago on October 22nd, a Wednesday night, I was upstairs in the school getting ready for class. I was in my office and students were already starting to show up for their magickal studies class.  I was speaking with a student when more students came upstairs and one came to me and said "Um, Ms. Faith. It's kind of strange, but a cat came into the school with me."

I asked immediately where this cat was.  I had no sooner uttered the words when up the stairs came this precious, little black cat with green eyes. She was not quite a year old and while almost completely black she had a "milk tip", or patch of white on the very tip of her tail.  I watched in surprise as she came right across the space to my office, walked right up to me and curled herself around my ankles and started to purr! Even being a witch this was enough to have my eyes wide with amazement.  I told her it was nice to meet her and told her she could stay for class, but then she's have to go home.

She had a ratty flea collar around her neck which indicated to me that she belonged to someone.  While my students all wanted for us to keep her, I had a dilemma. I had a cat once that went missing and never returned. It can be devastating and I didn't want to cause someone pain and worry about their cat.  Although it was October, the weather was still mild and so I decided that we would put her out that evening so she could make her way home. I did tell my students I would bring her in for safety's sake if she was still around the next day, primarily because of the timing. A black cat, hanging around a witch shop, with Halloween right around the corner,  well I knew lots of bad things could happen with all of those factors in play. 

Well, the next day she was still around. We still had some items outside from our summer celebrations, rituals and classes and the next day the black cat was crouched in a large copper cauldron we had left out. A woman who is mentally ill, and walks up and down the street was trying to get the cat.  The woman, we knew, because at times we've had to call the police to help her as she will walk in the middle of the street and sing Christmas carols while trying to dodge traffic. A sad, harmless woman and I'm sure she meant only to pet and play with the cat, but when we got to work she was trying to capture the cat and the cat wanted nothing to do with her.

We told the woman the cat was ours and brought her into the store. The flea collar was very tight, so I cut it off of her. I fed her and when I went to pick her up, I scooped her up under her belly, she gently nipped at my hand.  I immediately felt that that meant something, and that she was most likely pregnant.

We posted pictures of her in the store and a few days later a customer came in and mentioned she had been driving by and saw a car stop in front of our store and she thought they put a black or dark colored cat out on our front lawn.  I told the customer that we did just have a cat adopt us and if my suspicions proved true and she was pregnant I then understood perfectly what had happened.

I also knew, with that sense of 'knowing' that she was now ours.  I started trying out names and she finally came to the name Callie.  I found that interesting because at the time that was my magickal name.  I let her share it, as it seemed to fit her so well. Shortly afterwards I brought her to the local vet and they confirmed she was most likely just under a year old, and indeed expecting a litter. I also noticed that when I went to pet her and she saw my hand she immediately cowered and shied away. Someone had been cruel to her.  She exhibited other behaviors of not being cared for well.  On top of that, the fact that someone dropped her off in a strange neighborhood, where it was cold and scary, she was pregnant and alone, yet my brave little- Callie had the courage to walk into a strange building with lots of people, and she somehow knew to seek me out.  I believe the Goddess was with her that night.

I made the decision then to keep her. It was obvious to me that someone somewhat cared for her for a time, but did not take the responsibility they should have and have her fixed.  We had her given the shots she could have while expecting, and made arrangements with the vet to have all her medical needs and those of her kittens met by us. I believe that domesticated animals are here for us. There would be no need for domesticated animals if not for humans, and as such we have an inherent responsibility to them as they share our world. 

Then came the blessed event, exactly 6 weeks from her arrival, to the day, on December 3rd, 2008, on a Wednesday night (during Witches Astrology class,   which I found to be perfect timing) Callie started giving birth.  I had never presided over an animal giving birth before, even though I was raised on a dairy farm.  We always saw the new born animals after they were born.  I had seen calves and foals being born from a distance, but they are so big right from the beginning and the vets and my father, who was the farmer, always kept the kids far enough away to not be able to see exactly what was going on. 

My priestess Laurel,  who works with me at Enchantments, came upstairs and helped me act the midwife.  Right before each kitten was born, the mother announced their arrival with a scream that would curdle milk  and definitely got our attention. We stayed with her for an hour and a half and by the end of class, coincidentally, she had birthed four beautiful tiny kittens. They were so tiny and fragile.  Because of the time of the year, it was almost Yuletide,  I thought the names of the Arch angels to be appropriate.  Well the first three were named after the angels, the first to be born was Rafa 'el, we call him Raffie. He's a flirt, a lover and just wants to snuggle and play.  The second and by far the biggest was Micha 'el, we call him Mickie, he feels there was a mix up and he should have been born first as he acts the King. The third was a little girl who has the most precious, pretty kitten face, even now. We named her Gabri 'el  and she goes by Gabbie, she's a bit stand-offish until she decides she likes you, and she's very quiet. Nary a peep out of her, ever.   The last little one, darker than the rest, he was almost black at birth, we called Baby Boy.  They were all born with mom's green eyes.

Four perfect, beautiful kittens.  I remember one day worrying that Baby Boy was so small, and he seemed weaker than the rest. He was also sluggish and the vet seemed to think he would be fine, but he wasn't as active that first week or so.  One night I was worried and around midnight, I went back to the store just to check and make sure everyone was fine.  I went to the closet in my office which was the temporary nursery and he was still weak and listless.  I placed my magickal cloak, one that I would wear in ritual in the magick circle on the floor of their nursery and placed him upon it, with the others.  I didn't know what else to do, so I said a blessing, asked the Goddess to look over them, and went home and burned a brown candle for animal magick.   

The goddess heard my plea and the next morning Baby Boy was scampering and playing with the others.  He has, I'm proud to say,  become the biggest of all of them!.  They are all Egyptian Mau's by breed.  I only know this because shortly after they were born I saw a show on Animal Planet that actually spoke of the breed Egyptian Mau.  What makes them unusual is they are only one of two species of domesticated cats that have spots. The leopard cat breed also has spots, but what makes the Egyptian Mau unique, is they have a large skin flap connecting the back legs to the abdomen area that typically cats do not have.  Apparently this allows them to achieve the fastest running speeds of any domesticated cat. Officially Egyptian Mau's have been clocked at over 30 miles per hour!!  I know when the kittens play and run around it seems fast, but I've never clocked them myself. 

They have tiger striping on their shorter front legs, and spots on their backs and bellies. They have longer back legs which aid them in running and jumping father than a typical cat. Besides the skin flap, they have the dark black eye liner around their eyes and they seldom meow. They chitter, and chirp instead when they speak with us. They are also very sociable and love, love, love being around people.  Oh!! Please don't misunderstand, I'm not looking to adopt them out, I'm not getting rid of them. Any of them!!

Actually, when I first found out Callie was expecting I though, fine. I will give her kittens away as everyone is apt to do, but only after they have been spayed, neutered and have received all of their first year vaccinations. I know from experience, that a lot of very nice people, for whatever reason do not take the responsibility and have the necessary  veterinarian care given to their animals. I find this to be irresponsible. Everyone loves puppies and kittens but if you can't or won't care for them as you should, please don't bring them home. I also knew keeping them for a year, would make them older where the 'cute kitten impulse' wouldn't be a factor.  The one thing I didn't think about, was how anyone could get rid of their 'babies' when you've had them an entire year. I couldn't. I wouldn't, I won't.

The vet was kind and gave us a serious discount on their vaccinations, knowing the circumstances of how we came about our litter of kits.  We did even out the numbers a bit, and I brought Baby Boy home with us. He's now the 'king' of the household and he rules with two other female cats I had before Callie adopted us at Enchantments. 

A very cool epiphany happened while I was with the kittens one day.  They were hungry and their canned food, was cold. A partial can in the fridge.  I heated it up and when I put it down I watched one kitten go up to the food, and he felt the heat and backed away and then came and took a bite.  It occurred to me I was watching the very first time he had experienced hot, or warmer than body temperature food.  I realized that their entire existence depended on us, humans. That we effect everything in their lives. We can make their lives wonderful or miserable, its completely up to us.  Right there and then I made Callie and her babies a promise.

I promised her that she would never again know a cruel hand or hear harsh words.  Cats, by the way, dislike human anger and upset emotions very much, much as I do.   I also promised her, her kits would never know a cruel hand, a harsh word nor ever be harmed or mistreated in this lifetime. They will always have a loving home, and with four cats here and three at home, I know I'm running the risk of being called a 'crazy cat lady' but that's o.k., I'm a witch. It's an honor to me that she chose me to be her guardian and friend, and that she trusted her most precious of belongings to me. 

I've included pictures of all of the babies and the mom.  It would have been nice to take a group photo, but you try that with a bunch of cats!! I dare you.

Today is their birthday, they are two years old.  They've made my life so much more rewarding and special just by being in my life.  I know many will feel Callie was lucky to have found Enchantments and me, but I'm truly the lucky one.

Peace and Happiness






© 2010 Enchantments, LLC Portions of this blog posting may include materials from my book “Enchantments School for the Magickal Arts First Year Magickal Studies.” For more information, see www.enchantmentsschool.com.  The link to the schools website can be accessed by clicking ion the title of this blog post.

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3 comments:

  1. The cats at Enchantments really do make the school that much more magickal. They add a kind of quiet energy and a large dose of cuteness!

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  2. Oh! Good for you! I took in two bottle feeding siblings 2 1/2 years ago. They were supposed to go back for adoption at 9 wks. After feeding them, teaching them to use a litterbox, etc. I was just too attatched! They're Zeus and Zena. Beautiful black companions.

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  3. AWWW that is such a nice story Faith. I remember
    those sweet little kittens all scampering around. I wish all people were kind and caring. Too bad we have to put up with the cruel and miserable people but you almost have to feel sorry for them. uh ahem I didn't know about the mentally ill woman at all but thanks for the warning. I will drive slower now.

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