I’m traveling a lot for work, over the next few months, and I’m sorta worried about my cat.

Jake is 16 years old. He’s nearly deaf. Has a whole host of problems. We’re coming at him twice a day with medicine. And there’s nothing more that he wants to do than crawl up inside of me like a reverse-fetus-kitty.

My other cats are happy when I come home from these trips, but Jake turns into a velcro cat. And I worry about that because I’ve tried to instill “together but separate” in my cats.

We can be together on the couch without you being in my grill. We can be in love with one another without being the same entity. You can sit on my lap, but you can also sit other places, too.

“Together but separate” is of particular importance to me because — if anything happens to me on the road — I want my cats to feel some level of attachment to my husband.

And I take this concept into all of my relationships, by the way. It’s great to hang out with you. I love you a lot. But I’m my own woman. There are no squads.

Jake is beyond annoyed when I enforce the “together but separate” rule. (Like, you know, when I’m eating or peeing.) But that’s okay. A little personal space is a healthy thing.

And I am trying to make sure the “together” part is meaningful. For example, I don’t try to jam a syringe of prednisolone down his throat the moment he wakes up in the morning. Let’s ease into the day and do some rubs before I dose you with medicine.

I’m excited about my upcoming trips. I know my cats will be in good hands. And while I know that Jake will miss me a lot, I know he’ll be happy to receive attention from my husband.

The medication part? Yeah, not so much!

2 Responses to Together but Separate
  1. Lauren Wolf

    I’m enjoying following your blog, as I’ve been in HR for 30+ years, run, etc. I have three cats. One is 16, nearly deaf, and survives on steroids and antibiotics. Thought I’d mention he get’s once a month shots that work very well. We’d never be able to get meds in him daily without utter confusion by him as to why we would be attacking regularly.

    • ruettimann

      Sounds familiar! We do a bi-weekly vitamin b12 shot for him. I’m quite a good amateur vet tech.