I awoke in pain from my lower back. Dawn's soft grey light was creeping in past the bedroom blinds. Orientation slowly poured into me.
My head was between two pillows. A giant gingerbear was snuggled against me on my left, using my pillow as his pillow. My wife was tucked up against me on my right. My legs were turned to my left but I was flat on my back. Hence, my pain.
A cat was resting on my abdomen. Weight pinned down the blankets, anchoring me into place. I managed to free my left hand and then wrestled my left arm out from under the covers and turned my body to align its upper and lower halves. That shifted the cat on my abdomen. She leaped away with a mighty spring that I felt through all my ab muscles. At least I was freed to shift more.
I lifted my head from its pillow canyon. "What?" the Gingerbear King asked in a soft, disapproving mew. Bringing my right arm up, I cupped him around his belly and massaged it for a few seconds to relax him. As he purred, I slid him toward me, raised myself up with my left arm, and pushed myself up and over him.
The upper body went but the lower body was still trapped by covers and wife. She continued snoring. The Gingerbear King asked with more alarm, "What are you doing?" The Gray Shadow stalked up my legs to have a word with me.
I pulled my legs free of their trap and leveraged myself backwards with my arms.
My back and shoulders discovered the bed's edge.
Annoyance seeped through me as I took in the scene, lit by gray dawn. My wife was in the center left side of the bed - my side - along with two cats. Out beyond the ridge made by my wife's body was a wide swath of unused bed.
Hanging on to the bed's edge, I pulled my legs out, twisted free of bedding and cats, lowered my feet to the floor, and then pivoted my upper body out of the bed.
I was free.
The cats rose and stretched. "Meow," the Gingerbear King said, marching down the bed and leaping off. "Meow." The Gray Shadow jumped off the bed as the Gingerbear King released another commanding, "Meow," and marched out of the room. Glancing back at me to see what I was going to do, the Gray Shadow sidled toward the door, waiting to see if I would follow the Gingerbear King's order to feed them.
Stretching and yawning, I followed the cats out the door and down the hall. I feel like I've lived this scene before.
Happy new year.
Causes Michael Seidel Supports
Kiva, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Propublica.org, Doctors Without Borders, GreaterGood.com