I have to admit that my relationship with Fat Cat in particular has become a little more fraught – since my son was born, but certainly since baby number two has appeared on the scene.
My main complaints:
1. He makes a mockery of my authority in front of the Toddler, by refusing to do as he is told. Usually this is: “Get off the table, cat. This is people-food, not cat-food.” The Toddler then gleefully joins in the Cat Reprimanding: “No, Pike. Not tafel. Mensen. Not cat. Tout poes.” [No, Spike. Not table. People. Not cat. Naughty cat.] Fat Cat just continues to sit on the table, staring at our breakfast in the hope that we will eventually share, and as I am usually feeding the baby at the time I don’t have a free hand to follow through on my cat-discipline.
2. TMI, I am sure, but my left nipple is rather badly injured from early breastfeeding issues. To aid with the healing I wear a special wound dressing thing as well as a regular breast pad. While feeding I carefully put this gel pad to one side, away from toddlers. Fat Cat will jump onto the arm of the sofa and put a big old paw on top of it. GRAAAARGH!
3. When the baby is not in it (thank goodness), he jumps into the moses basket and makes it a comfy bed, leaving it coated in cat fur.
4. My feeding pillow is an inflatable travel one. While I am feeding the baby, he will frequently come up to me and lovingly stick a claw into the pillow. It now has a slow puncture.
5. When Fat Cat feels it is dinner time (which is any time after about 3pm), he gets very aggressively affectionate towards anyone who might feed him. The Toddler does not have a finely honed sense of when it is safe to pet Fat Cat and when there might be claws, so this time of day is rather stressful for busy Mummies who are breastfeeding and also trying to keep their toddler safe.
You see a pattern, I am sure: cats and toddlers are just hard to manage while breastfeeding. All in all, I find it so much easier to feed Fat Cat and then encourage (chuck) him out of the house until dinner time. And then perhaps after dinner until bedtime.
Thankfully, my husband sticks up for the poor cat and gives him lots of love and attention in the evenings.