I am a groomer. You would be too if you had a sleek coat such as mine and long hours to yourself. Perhaps it is a coping mechanism for times when I am lonely, but I like to think of myself as fastidious.
There is another purpose for which I have discovered grooming lends itself. Humans will not disturb a bathing cat. When I need a little space, I just take a little bath!
There came a time, however, when my hygiene habits seemed to backfire … in the worst way.
My humans and I had developed a kind of balance, an equilibrium of sorts. This was working well for me until I began to feel a bit unlike myself. I was experiencing a level of discomfort that I had never felt before. My insides were disturbed, and I did not feel like eating. Worse yet, I did not feel like grooming.
I withdrew to a dark corner and did my best to sleep and wait for relief. It did not come. The pain increased and my strength decreased. My human sought me out and I gazed at her with widened pupils hoping that the sadness showed in my eyes.
Eventually I had the urge to vomit, but try as I might, I was not successful. My human must have been concerned as she became very attentive, mewing and muttering words I could not understand. My efforts to vomit grew weaker- as did I.
The abdominal pain worsened. I heaved - weakly. I felt limp as a cloth and my coat needed attention.
Presently, my human produced a caramel goo that she placed on my paws and food. I could not, nor did I care to, eat it. I could not muster the strength to consume it or clean it from my paws.
My human’s concern must have heightened for she began to force feed me the goo shoving her caramel coated finger deep into my throat. I let it creep down into my stomach, not having the strength to resist. She then commenced to deliver some sort of liquid with a tube she inserted into my mouth. Between feedings she rubbed my underparts. It was disturbingly comforting.
The massages and force feeding continued for a time. As my body received nourishment, I began to feel a bit more like myself. Gaining strength, I was finally able to rid myself of the great mass of fur that had accumulated in my insides.
Cautiously, I began to eat and drink. Eventually, I resumed my grooming habits. I was back!
My human had saved me. I must not let her go. She had become my person to whom I owed my life! I knew from that day on I must forever sit upon her and keep her company.
And so I do.