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  • The cat arrived home with a limp yesterday evening. I only noticed as he stepped across my body looking for somewhere warm to settle. He only does this when he is feeling in need of some security and it is always on his own terms. I musn't look too long, stroke too long or attempt to rearrange him. He is his own being.

    He is the same cat who disappeared recently whilst following me to the shops and made temporary home with a woman who was far more attentive than me.

    Anyway.

    I wanted to look at that limp and knowing his dislike of being looked at, I wrapped him in a towel first. When I picked him up, he winced and yelled. I left him be and he dragged himself off down the stairs, shouting and hissing as he eventually fell down the last few steps.

    Last week, as I called him in for his dinner. A fox ran from his and the other cat's hiding spot towards me instead. A small fox but bigger than my boys, certainly.

    I'm thinking maybe that fox grabbed him last night. I liked the fox but I would not like him to eat my cat.

    He spent a couple of hours trying to get comfortable and whimpering as he turned. I rang friends and vets and eventually he fell asleep.

    This morning, he got up and ate and limped a little but didn't howl in pain like last night. He still won't let me look but he will let me touch his still sore leg. He has cried to go out and he has eventually acquiesced to my refusal and is currently led with his toy mouse under the radiator in the hall upstairs. I am keeping my eye on him a little longer and will take him to the vets in the morning.

    He, in his pain, both wanted me and did not want me. I didn't want to hear him howl in agony and did not want to take him for invasive care that he might not need. I watched him dictate his desires, his choice of where to sit, how to sit, how near I could be and put aside (sort of) my 'owner' anxiety. He's not an easy cat. The first day he came to live with me all he did was bite me. All day long. Just biting. I've worked hard with him to give up my need to have him show me love in the way I wish it. And I've come to notice that he has his own ways. How he'll always be near me. At the very least, the room I'm in if he can. How sometimes he will come to rest his cheek on mine for just a brief minute. And how when he doesn't want to be touched he'll pin my hand down with his paw, but hold it there. Not wanting to let me go. I don't know his history, he is a rescue cat. I'm guessing it wasn't great. It got me to thinking.

    The nature of pain upon our being is a fox-bitten cat. We, who look as if to say "I do not love you - stay away" are merely looking for the way to lie that causes least discomfort. Healing comes slowly, with quiet. And the being let-be, with love.
  • This is he when he first met the other cat (kitten, then.) That collar also went for a burton pretty much immediately, as did any after that - till I gave up.
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