Over the past 27 years it's a rare night I've spent alone in bed. And while I adore my bedmate(s), over the past few months it's become clear that something has to change. I should be the dominant partner, not the submissive one - the one forced into holding positions for hours, hit if I move before I'm allowed.
You think I'm kidding?
When I moved into the Cold Cottage from Hell, my big boy became a wonderful teddy cat and the little guy would curl up in the crook of my knees. Together we'd huddle against the lack of heat in the bedroom, keeping each other warm and safe throughout the winter. Then we moved and things got better, but the minute winter arrived we'd all curl up together. Slowly a pattern arose: get into bed, lie on my right side and have my left arm/hand be used as a pillow by Bogie, and after an hour or so we'd all find our own comfortable positions and sleep soundly - then after breakfast, Mallory would take over and we'd nap a little.
This past May Bogie joined our other mantlecats and Mallory became the Alpha Cat in the house and in bed.
During the workday, or when I'm at home but not in bed, Mallory is purrfectly capable of getting under the covers on his own and getting back out. Cyd, Francis and Greta can do that too. But the minute I get into bed he manages to lose that ability and uses his hands hitting me as a sort of remote control cover opener. If that doesn't work, he'll nip me. At night, if I don't have my hands just so for use as a pillow, I get hit again! And people wonder why I don't get a good night's sleep...
If only it weren't just about my bed:
(yeah, he's commandeered my slippers... but that's a gripe for next time)