Dear Chickadee Supporters,
My visits with Chickadee each week look something like this –
I enter the Community Room, willing and able to “visit” with Chickadee, which means in my world I want to sit next to her, have a conversation and pet her. I am not expecting anything out of the ordinary. I do not expect her, for example, to jump on my lap, or even purr, for that matter. That would be a nice bonus, but I recognize that forging a relationship with a cat takes time. But…here is what happens.
When I arrive, she leaves. Wherever I go, she goes someplace else.
If she is sitting with all contentment on a chair, as soon as I sit down next to her, she allows, perhaps, one pet, and then off she goes. She jumps down, wobbles a bit, and then she either trots off to the other side of the room or around the table, or she jumps onto the window ledge, or she suddenly realizes she’s starving and gets something to eat.
What is that?! I’m not going to call it rudeness, but I would think that most cats would appreciate the visit, the attention. But then again I am reminded of another cat who acted in much the same way. I’d arrive and the minute I walked over to pet her, she’d jump down and walk over to her food bowl and begin eating. It took time for her to get used to me.
But the issue remains. What do I do when Chickadee exhibits such “get out of my face” behavior? I have tried waiting for her to return. No such luck. Does she forget I’m sitting there patiently waiting or, perhaps in truth, not so patiently waiting?
I have tried calling her back. “Chickadee.” She barely glances around. After all, the Community Room is filled with many interesting distractions. No, calling does not work.
I have tried following her, which to anyone watching would appear to resemble more the horrible practice of stalking. Where she goes, I follow. Across the room. Around the table. Near the food. Near the window. That’s usually when the growling begins.
Staff member Karin says the growling is a mixed message, because she’s been growled at too, and she reads it as a good sign as long as Chickadee is looking at her with loving eyes.
Unfortunately, for me, the eyes are not so loving. But, there was one day I did come in to visit and for just a few moments, Chickadee did not make the great escape. She stayed put. I petted her. We had our conversation. She sniffed my hand and even licked it. I took that as a good sign. And I saw some loving eyes glancing in my direction. Then she jumped down and scooted away and I decided not to follow her.
Why ruin a good thing? I keep the faith. I have hope.
On a serious note, Chickadee is doing fine medically. Nothing at all to report on that front. Yeah!!
Thanks for your continued generosity. And enjoy the lovely weather we are having. I hope it continues!