The new striped baby in our home managed to tread quickly on my heart, leaving four soft pawprints. I didn’t know my spirit and soul would be so open to her beguiling sweetness, curiosity and spunk. I didn’t know she would bring me back to my childhood, and even my lost mother, in a magical way.

This is not our Nina but it looks like her tiny, mighty self. Image from Unsplash.com.

first held a squirmy kitten when I was a young girl on Bedford Road in Dumont, New Jersey. I cradled it in my arms, promptly took my…