Mama knows best? Well, not always

By Karin Spicer


In my daughter Jordan’s second year of law school, she hit the proverbial wall. She was overworked and over tired.

We had talked about Jordan adopting a kitten once she was in law school. Growing up, Jordan took care of Lucy, our rescue dog, and Abby, our rescue cat. She fed them both their dinner. Jordan cleaned Abby’s litter box and walked Lucy. She was good with both animals, kind and tender. Jordan was there when we welcomed them into our home, and she was there when we had to say goodbye to both.

Under normal circumstances, if she asked to adopt a kitten, I would have fully supported her. But now? I wasn’t sure it was a good idea. Jordan looked beat, and the second year of law school wasn’t any easier than the first.

So, under the “Mama knows best” rule, I said I didn’t think it was a good idea. I worried something was going to suffer — her schoolwork, the kitten and/or her health. My husband, Ed, agreed it would be additional work, but thought Jordan could handle it and it might lift her spirits. I agreed about her spirits, but I wasn’t convinced about the workload. I reluctantly said “OK.”

Jordan and Ed went to the Society for the Improvement of Conditions for Stray Animals (SICSA) adoption and wellness center. They first checked out the younger kittens. All cute, full of energy and running all over the place. Too much for Jordan.

Ed encouraged Jordan to look at the older kittens. None of those really grabbed Jordan’s interest until the last one, a 6-month-old, black Chantilly-Tiffany named Spyder. The kitten had recently been adopted but had been returned because of a bout with diarrhea.

The kitten was mesmerized with Jordan, who was thrilled. Ed smiled. And I got a text from Jordan: “I found one.”

I sent back, “Good.”

Then multiple texts started flowing.

“She’s all black and gorgeous.”

“Her name’s Spyder. That’s going to change, pronto.”

I sent back a laughing emoji. Jordan hates spiders.

The last text was from Ed: “I thought we were never going to leave. Jordan looked at every kitten twice.”

I laughed. That was Jordan. Making sure she was making the right decision.

I still had doubts when Jordan, Ed and the kitten returned home. The first order of business was selecting a new name. Jordan wanted one that referenced the kitten’s beautiful shiny black coat.

After some debate, Jordan settled on “Wednesday” after Wednesday Addams from the “Addams Family” movies and TV show. Jordan had taken a theater make-up class for fun as a University of Dayton undergraduate and for one assignment she transformed herself into Wednesday Addams.

Wednesday quickly adjusted to Jordan’s law school routine. The kitten curled up on the couch with Jordan when she was reading. She curled up on the kitchen table when Jordan was working on a writing assignment.

When Jordan needed a quick break, Wednesday was ready to play. The kitten’s antics lessened Jordan’s stress. Jordan’s second and third years of law school were happier and sillier because of Wednesday. The new cat was Jordan’s good luck charm as she studied for the bar exam.

And three years later, the first sounds Jordan hears as she comes home from work are Wednesday’s “meeps.” It always makes her laugh.

Sometimes, Mama doesn’t know best.

Chantilly-Tiffany by the numbers

Origin: United States

Size: Medium

Coat: Long hair, silky, soft

Lap cat: Yes

Life span: 14-16 years

Temperament: Affectionate, demanding, interactive, loyal


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