Monday, June 29, 2009

Who Gets the Other Cat?

I’ve been reading a short book this morning, The Girls with Grandmother Faces by Frances Weaver. She writes about making the most of the second half of life. In her chapter called “Sisters,” she writes a little about sibling rivalry among her and her sisters and how they became best friends later in life. I loved this particular story:

The ultimate sibling rivalry/cooperation story, as far as I’m concerned, starred Mary Marn and me. The big interest in our lives focused under our grandmother’s back porch. The cat and her litter of four kittens lived there. Each day we checked to see if their eyes had opened yet. Each one of us had our chosen kitten.

“This was 1934, pre-penicillin days. My appendix ruptured. I was one sick little girl. Dad came home from the hospital realizing he had to prepare his other daughters for any eventuality—in those days, a ruptured appendix was generally fatal. After a tearful discussion of ‘Franny might die . . .’five-year-old Mary wiped her eyes and asked, ‘Who gets the other cat?'

I grew up with two younger brothers and no sisters, but I did raise two daughters. They're four years apart and were never the best of friends as kids. As adults they've discovered a love for each other that makes me extremely happy. However, there were some times . . .! Here's one of them.

The oldest had discovered my IBM Selectric typewriter that I used in my home business, and she did a pretty decent job of learning how to use it. One of the "best" things she did was prepare a very official looking document (at least for a 10-year-old) that "proved" her little sister had been adopted. Since little sister was just learning how to read, you can probably imagine her "concern" about that up-to-then unknown discovery. I'm not sure how long it took for her to figure out the whole thing was a hoax, but the oldest really had her going for a while.


Yarntangler said...

Why didn't I think of that???

Old Newsie said...

There were very early times when I could have times=d that by four YY!

Francine said...

That's a really cute entry, enjoyed reading it.