Cats are the Best Part of Dying

Unlucky me, I caught one of the plagues going around the office. I spent the last two days in bed accompanied by the giant wad of mucus in my face, a sporadic fever, and two cats. Though I was drifting in and out of consciousness, I did notice how differently my cats behave on days I stay in bed.

Normal Morning

On a typical day, my alarm goes off at seven, but I hit the snooze until Roxie demands to be fed. This means I’m lucky if I get through a single snooze cycle. Half asleep, I then attempt climb down our loft ladder (which I’ve yet to hurt myself on). I say it’s an “attempt” because inevitably, Min will try to catch a ride down the ladder on my shoulder. Sometimes I fend her off, other times I just have to accept there’s a cat on my back and hope she doesn’t rake me with her back claws.

By the way, our ladder looks like this:

Next I head to the restroom, two cats in tow. My morning relief is accompanied by Roxie yowling as if she’s starving to death and Min trying to crawl in my lap while I pee (awkward!). Food and fresh water pauses Roxie’s diatribe and I’m able to move onto the litter box. I think Min tries to make the horrid chore more pleasant by being overly social. She crawls up my back, perches on my should, and rubs her face in my hair while I scoop her poop from the litter box into the toilet. If I don’t let her climb on my back, she walks in circles around me and bites on my shirt.

I shower, robe up, and head to the closet for the painful task of selecting clothing. “Distract Meg From Getting Dressed” is their absolute favorite game. Roxie walks in circles around my feet, purring. Min “scratches” on my robe until I pick her up and hold her. She gets angry if I try to put her down. This makes choosing a shirt very difficult. At some point during the closet game, CJ usually comes down the ladder and starts his morning exercises. Roxie feels it’s her duty to meow at him while he does his flutter kicks. Perhaps she’s counting?

Once I’m clothed and the CJ is no longer doing his exercises, we’re a lot less interesting to the beasties; they wander off and do cat things until we leave for work.

Icky Sick Days

On mornings like the previous two, when I’m too ill to go to work, CJ feeds the cats and cleans the litter box. Neither cat budges from bed until they hear the sound of food falling into their dish, and even then it’s only Roxie who runs down the ladder to eat. CJ gets ready to leave in a mere twenty minutes and when he’s gone, both cats are glued to my side in bed. They only move if I roll over, and even then they complain about it. If I go down the ladder to rest on the couch for a bit, both feel like they need to do the same. Roxie curls up under the blanket, Min curls up on top. Back up the ladder – wash, rinse, repeat. All day.

On sick days, there’s no overdramatic screaming, there’s no cat trying to use me as an elevator, and no one trying to keep me from getting dressed. There’s only warm, fuzzy kitty snuggles. It’s quite pleasant.

Death by Cat? Or Death With Cat?

I’ve convinced myself this is their preference. They’d like to keep me home in bed all day for snuggles and lots of napping. It has been suggested that perhaps Min is poisoning me just enough so that I stay home, but not enough to kill me. I wouldn’t put it past her.

CJ claims the cats try to strangle him with their paws at night. I’ve always disregarded this since cats do not have opposable thumbs, however I may be more open to his claims now.

Still, if one must die eventually (and we all must), death by house cat is as good a way as any.

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