Mia: Look Mommy, it's a picture of Daddy with a kitty on his lap.
Mommy: It sure is, babe.
Mia: What's the kitty's name?
Mommy: That's Callie.
Mia: Callie lived with us when I was a baby.
Mommy: That's right.
Mia: Mommy, where is Callie now?
Mommy: (Dammit! Ok, you can do this, just be gentle and direct and keep it at her level.)
Mommy: Well, sweetheart, Callie was very old and she got sick and she died.
Mia: (long pause)
Mommy: (Fuck! Why did you say that? What the hell is wrong with "Callie went to live in a nice farm"? Stupid mommy, bad mommy, the child is damaged for life now. Fuck!)
Mia: Callie is in my lap. See?
Mia: I'm patting her head! I'm patting it very gently! Isn't that nice of me?
Mommy: Yes well, in that case, Callie likes to have her chin scratched.
Mia: I'm scratching her chin! Mommy, Callie wants to take a nap in the guest room! Let's go! Shhhh, Mommy, don't wake Callie up!
Mommy: Not much chance of that, Bean.
And that is how I came to spend yesterday afternoon playing with my dead cat.