Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Me And My Shadow

Well, this day sure did get away from me.  Tomorrow being "back to school" day for children and Sheep alike, it seemed like a good idea to take care of all those things to which one must attend if one wants to be clothed and fed for this abbreviated work week.  I distinctly remember saying to myself bright and early this morning, "Let's get to it, Sheepie, Old Girl!  We're all set for a day of great productivity!  I'll just take a minute to pat myself on the back and give myself an appreciative wink in the mirror and then we're off!"

And that was about it.  I could blame the whole thing on the fact that there was a Twilight Zone Marathon on today and that this was the reason for my having been sucked into some time vortex.  Because, really...is there any better way to ring in the New Year than with a cheerful sentiment like, "I'm Talking Tina.  And I'm going to kill you?"

Maybe it is the fact that we are hunkered down for yet another massive snow storm.  That always seems to bring out the lazy in me.  Something about those gray skies and the inability to get out to do stuff...it's a marvelous excuse for lolling around.

Whatever the cause, I don't seem to have done all those last minute things I'd planned on doing.  I've pretty much been sacked out on the couch and knitting a sock.  I like to think that the sock knitting is what keeps the dust from settling all over me.  

It's probably just as well that I've been sedentary today.  Moving around too much could prove to be a bit dangerous these days.  I have a little black and white shadow, you see.

Tomorrow will mark one week since the passing of my poor Smaller, Less Fluffy Kitty.  She made the last ride home on Friday and one can't help but wonder just how such a large presence could fit in such a small urn.  The two days following her death were spent in a fog, alternating between weeping and trying to find some magical cure for puffy eyes.  I flirted with dehydration and became further despondent upon learning that peanut butter cups are neither a cure for grief nor for that dehydration.  The Big, Fluffy Kitty patiently waited out this storm.  But I wasn't so far gone that I couldn't see she was confused.

Since then, she has been an interesting little companion, to say the least.  No matter where I go, every time I turn around, I see this:






"Hi."


She and her sister never had the best of relationships.  But it wasn't for lack of trying on the part of the BFK.  In fact, her unwillingness to just give up and be terrified was something of a subtle form of sibling torture for Desdemona.  Eventually, they each found their place in the household and an uneasy truce was reached.  Now that she is an only child, Persephone seems to need a new hobby.  And is maybe a little depressed.  

Mealtime is particularly confusing.  Never having dined alone, she can't seem to figure out just when she is supposed to start eating and I spent several nights hand-feeding her.  Which is gross and involves the actual touching of mushy cat food.  She has finally gotten a handle on the new dinner rituals, but still seems perplexed.  

*Note:  Last summer's concerns regarding her having put on weight were resolved recently when I realized that my double-coated kitty had a mat problem and not a fat problem.  To put this in terms we can all understand, my cat had felted.  This was not apparent given the lovely condition of her outer coat and had progressed rather horribly.  Now that we've removed a couple pounds of clumped fur, it is clear that she is not fat.  So she probably should be eating...

If I happen to leave the room when she isn't paying attention, she begins to cry.  Never having been the most vocal of creatures, this is noteworthy.  When we are reunited after our two second separation, she expresses her happiness with great and sloppy enthusiasm.  She has also taken up mumbling to herself at random intervals.  My pointing out that this is behavior one step away from having to live in a place where you get paper shoes doesn't seem to make any sort of impression.  When she happens upon a spot where her dear departed sister used to nap, this mumbling takes on an almost quizzical tone.  

It's sort of a little bit heartbreaking, if you want the truth.

Tomorrow is not going to be a fun day for the poor BFK, I fear.  I'll be heading back to school and she will be alone for the first time in her life.  I'll leave the TV on and scatter about the eight billion toys I've purchased for her over the last week in the hopes that she can find a way to keep herself entertained.  But, I suspect that there will be a very grateful kitty greeting me at the door when I get back home.  

If the aforementioned strategies don't work, there will be nothing else for it but to purchase a baby sling and just lug her around for the rest of my life.  Which I suspect is going to be something of a problem for the school department given the rules around animals in the building.  

Do you think they'd consider opening up a kitty day care center?

SA

21 comments:

Rabbitch said...

Poor Persephone. And you have the best cat names evar. (Well, apart from Muppy and Boop but they were ... unique.)

trek said...

Oh, poor BFK. Let us know how she handles tomorrow.

Mel said...

She will, fortunately, adapt. They most always do. Of course, I can always keep an eye out for a kitten who needs a home.

Teri S. said...

The thought of BFK wandering around mewling confusedly when she's expecting to find Desdemona and doesn't brings tears to my eyes. I hope she does okay tomorrow. I'm thinking that you might want to consider a kitten after the appropriate amount of time passes. Good luck to you both tomorrow.

Mouse said...

I almost had a brother for my cat tonight after a random trip to Blockbuster video ended in me laying on the ground in the cold trying to coax a stray from out of the bushes and in close enough range that I could get it in the car...
Poor BFK- I'm sendin' love and virtual tuna her wayl

lobstah said...

Poor kitty :( You wonder what they are thinking when they lose a companion, if they really understand or what. Sending vibes that she handles tomorrow OK.

Brenda said...

What Mel said. Maybe she needs a little annoying kitten to keep her busy and out of trouble.

kmkat said...

Thinking of Persephone calling for Desdemona is so sad. My En Esch and Hannibal were littermates, and each has trouble dealing with any temporary absence of the other. Think how a kitten would brighten up Perse's life. And yours :)

Beth said...

I hope tomorrow goes well for both of you. I'm glad you figured out the problem with her coat!

mehitabel said...

I think Mel's got the right idea--a new kitten will be good for both of you. My friend's cat, who had hated her feline housemate, went around crying desolately after he was gone. A new cat stopped the crying, for both my friend and her cat! By the way, Persephone looks a lot like my grandkitten Maxine!

Kris said...

Hopefully BFK will survive the day not too much worse for wear. Funny how they can profess to hate each other yet be desconsolate when the other is missing.

Hugs

BTW - what are the chances that I have a mat problem too? Just wondering if that is easier to cure than the other kind of problem...

Mia said...

A HA! I KNEW I wasn't crazy for thinking about a baby sling for the cat. Welcome to my world of needy kitties *grin*

Anne said...

They actually HAVE a kitty day care here in SLC. With jungle gyms and such. Who'da thunk it?

Good luck with re-entry. :)

Anonymous said...

Poor BFK. Don't you wonder if they understand what happened.
Karen
http://nothingbutknit.blog-city.com/

Melissa said...

awww...poor Persephone. Dogs and cats do grieve their lost companions same as we do. She'll come around in time...but in the meantime sending her good thoughts.

Veggies.... said...

Perhaps too soon to consider but what about a new feline (adult and mature of course) to join the family? Years ago, my dear Tasha was the 'only child' and she was going down....not eating, sleeping too much etc....took her to a very wise vet who checked her out and reported her health to be A-OK...then enquired about home facts...my work schedule (3 jobs then etc) other kitties (none), other housemates (none)...and prescribed a new pal for Tash. Mitz on the scene a couple of weeks later was a miracle. Tash and her became lifelong, fast friends and Tash started bouncing back immediately.
If you do decide to go for another kitty, do chose wisely...not too lively or young of course.But the 'right' one could make all the difference.

In the meantime, A big hug to you and to Persephone and Headbonks from Mr. C and Ms. M.

Cursing Mama said...

The BFK will undoubtedly need some kind of sling....she did get you to hand feed her.

tenacious knitter said...

I missed the news about your kitty passing - I'm so sorry. I hope you and your other kitty feel better soon. I have kitties for the first time in my life and I dread the day they'll have to leave me.

Julie said...

Well, they certainly SHOULD open up a kitty daycare center. Poor Persephone; I hope she did okay today. And I hope you did okay and didn't worry too much about her.

Knitting Linguist said...

I don't think there's anything more sad than seeing one pet pine for another. When my 16-year-old cat died, my dog just flat-out stopped eating. I don't think she knew how to eat without her paranoid "the cat will eat my food if I don't" reaction. Lots of petting and loving, for both of you.

Cathy said...

I wondered how it's been going - keeping you in my thoughts.

Bunny was an only child for months. She didn't approve of the changes in her household (dogs! how unacceptable!) but I catch her playing with Taz now. I never would have believed it. Bunny will be 9 soon - time has flown and her attitude has mellowed.