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“We’re never getting a cat. Just forget it,” I told husband Steve.

I think I said that a gazillion times. But one day we saw a petite little cat named Willow who was up for adoption at Petco and Steve melted. “Nope. We’re not getting a cat,” I reminded him. And we left the store.

The next night in bed, Steve pines, “I keep thinking about Willow.”

“Well, you can keep thinking ’cause we’re not getting a cat.” And then I rolled over in bed and thought about how I might be a mean wife, but I’m still right. You see, for months Steve had been talking about wanting to get gerbils and a big ass Habitrail that goes on for miles and miles that he would connect all through the house.

“Sure, that’s a great idea,” I told him. “…if you’re seven!”

A couple of days later I left for work and I don’t know what it was but all day I couldn’t help but think of Steve –my husband of only nine months– who really wanted that cat. Maybe it was Newlywed Bliss that fogged my thinking, but I all of a sudden became certain that Willow would bring so much joy to my new husband. So after work I went over to Petco and adopted Willow for only $40.

Because I was not educated in the art of pet ownership I didn’t have the wisdom to actually buy a cat carrier. I had bought the food, a cat bed, and even some toys, but I didn’t buy the carrier. Instead, I put Willow in a box on the back seat, laid a bag of kibble on top to secure the lid (there were holes for her to breathe–I’m not that dumb), but she cleverly escaped and was wandering around my car as I drove home. For some reason I thought turning on the local classical radio station would calm her down. (Who wouldn’t calm down with a little Chopin?)

When I got home I called Steve from my cell phone to have him meet me in the garage to help me carry some stuff in. I had Willow in my arms and was terrified she would jump out and run away and I would be out $40 and my husband would think I was the stupidest wife on the planet.

He saw me sitting in the car holding the cat and then he opened the door slowly and asked, “Is that Willow?” and then he got in the car and took her from my arms into his where she just purred and purred.

Willow the cat.

And it didn’t go completely unnoticed to me that when Steve turned to me his eyes were a little glassy.

And little Willow has become a great joy in my life. (Plus, I’m afraid I’ve turned into one of those people I swore I would never become: The type who thinks her pet is like a child.)

So, the moral of this story is two fold: First, never say, “never,” and it’s always a great idea to do something wonderful for your husband because it can also turn out to be wonderful for yourself.