Just about a year ago (April 2nd,to be exact) I decided to adopt a second cat.
I adopted my first cat, Chloe, back in August of 2007 when I was a grad student at the University of Kentucky (yes, that UK. No, I don’t watch basketball). At the time I was only gone maybe 5 hours a day so most of the time it was just me and Chloe hanging out. She is a super social creature, as anyone who has met her can confirm. Very friendly and quite the extrovert, going up to anyone who seems like they’d be willing (or not so willing) to pet her or has a comfy lap that looks empty (or not so empty).
And that was all fine and good until I graduated and moved back to Cleveland and got a full-time job. Suddenly my super social cat was left home alone for 12, 13 hours a day. So, after about a year of that, I decided it was unfair to her and I needed to find her a friend.
With both cats it was the exact same experience, which can only really be described as Love At First Sight. I wandered the cages, checking out the cats and kittens available. But with each rotation I’d eventually wander back to one cat in particular. In this case it was a small male tuxedo cat. As soon as I opened that cage and started to pet him, he began to purr and nudged my hand with his nose.
Winner winner, chicken dinner.
Of course, once I actually got him home he went into Fight or Flight mode, choosing flight and spent the first few days hiding under my filing cabinet in my office. The next week he spent it hiding under my couch. Chloe wanted to play but he wanted nothing to do with either of us. I spent about a month convinced I’d never ever actually see him, but slowly — very slowly — he started to come out and his personality blossomed.
He’s a nice balance to Chloe, who can be demanding. I mean, at 6:30 am every morning she’s knocking shit off my nightstand, knowing the sound of my votive candle or cell phone hitting the floor will be enough to wake me. Linus, on the other hand, just sits at the end of the bed patiently waiting for me to get out of bed and ask if he wants breakfast and then he goes running into the kitchen.
Most of my friends and family have never seen him in person, as he usually hides when company is over. Sometimes he even runs from me when I go to pet him. Affection has to be on his terms and he makes that very clear. But, with enough patience and space, he’ll mosey on up to the couch and comfortably settle in my lap and nap for hours on end. At night he hops up on the bed and sticks his nose in my face, sniffing, his way of saying good night. Some evenings he curls up next to me to sleep while other times he goes off running to play and in the morning I’ll wake up to find mouse toys in the sheets, presents he brought in the middle of the night.
When I adopted Chloe, I never had any intention of ever adopting a second cat. But now, I can’t imagine a household without the both of them. Often I am caught breathless by the sheer magnitude of love I have for these two animals. In a world of uncertainity, it really is all about the
little furry things.
Love from the ashes,