That's so interesting. My story is somewhat less exciting. I was almost nine years old, and my grambutter (that's what we've always called my grandmother) was making plastic mesh magnets for all of her grandkids. She was sitting at our kitchen table when I walked in and she asked me, "Marie, what's your favorite animal so I can make you one of these magnets?"
I had just watched yet another Animal Planet documentary the day before and so after agonizing over the decision I piped up, "A Manta Ray!" In my defense, they were extremely cool. But Grambutter laughed and said, "I don't think I can find a pattern for one of those", so I agonized over it for a few more moments. I had grown up with animals around me, and I didn't think it possible to pick a favorite. Then, out of nowhere, I found myself saying, "Ummm...a cat." I had no idea why I'd said it, but from that moment on I found myself getting more and more wrapped up in cats. Soon, I started begging my mother for a kitten of my own. Then, to my surprise a few months later a couple from our summer camp came over with a little charcoal and white kitten for me. I named him Milo and promptly fell in love. I lost him the following year when I moved in with my dad, but my love of cats never ever diminished.
Considering this and your story, I can't help but wonder what it is about cats that bewitches and beguiles us out of nowhere, and makes cat-people of us all.