Electric GirlJan 17, 2023
A while back, we lost our cat, Tolstoy. I’ve written about that before, but long story short, Tolstoy was a reincarnation of another cat, and both those cats lived fourteen years. This being’s motto seems to be “live fast, die young, leave a great body.” Which he has done.
Tolstoy in his young, good looking body
A few months after his departure, I got the sense that he was on his way back, so I tuned in, and yes, he said it was time to start looking. He gave me a few hints, and said he was bringing a friend along. Yes, he would be a cat. Yes, his friend was a cat. He told me the color he’d chosen, and that his friend was black. I asked a few more questions, and got information about where to look.
Let me stop right here and tell you that when an animal is returning to you, they want to be found, so they make it pretty easy. They’ll just keep putting themselves in front of you until the light bulb goes on in your head. Because of my line of work, we’ve gone through this a number of times, and these days they help me hone my skills by being a little bit vague. I have to ask the right questions to zone in on where to look and what to look for. It’s a fun puzzle.
I had the where and the what, and I started looking at photos online. Nothing was hitting me, so I asked a few more questions and narrowed down the search. The location became one place, I had an age to play with, and then the other things we had already discussed.
I didn’t find him right away. It took a little time and open-mindedness to complete the search, but one day, there he was, staring out at me from a photo that had recently been put on the site. I clearly remember saying, out loud, “There you are!” And then I wondered about his friend. He had told me clearly that he and his friend would be at the same place. However, none of the black cat pictures came close to what I was told to search for, so I was kind of puzzled.
Jackson in his new, young, good looking body
”Okay, I found you,” I told him. “I’m missing something about your friend, though.” So I asked a few more questions. Girl or boy? Girl. Long or short hair? Long. All black? Ah HA! This was a defining question. The answer came back no. Down we went along this bunny hole. Black and white? No. Black and some other color? Yes. Hmmmm. Tortoiseshell, but mostly black? Bingo!
And there she was. Right age, right fur, right color.
I called up the rescue and told them the two cats I wanted. I was doing this sight unseen, in their mind. The two cats were, in their view, completely unrelated. How could I have possibly picked out those two in particular? However, they’ve probably heard a lot of whacky stuff, so they went along with my idea that these two cats were going to come home with me.
It is always important to have a personal visit before bringing home any animal, so I sat in a room, and the two cats were brought to me. They got along fine, which means they sniffed noses, said hello, and then started scoping out the room, very calm with each other.
We adopted both of them. The cat who started all this is Jackson, and his friend is Ellie.
Ellie and Jackson when they first came home to us
I talked with a behaviorist at the rescue during the site visit. She was very concerned about Ellie, because Ellie is what they call “high-stim.” She had come to the rescue very unpredictable in her behavior toward humans, and it didn’t take much for her to lash out to get people to stop petting her. With lots of love and training on the part of the rescue, they finally felt she was ready to go to her forever home, but the behaviorist wanted to make sure I understood what made Ellie tick, and how careful we’d have to be with her. The behaviorist told me that Ellie was very special to her, and if she found out Ellie was not being treated in a way that kept her, Ellie, happy, she, the behaviorist, would come after me. I loved her attitude, and assured her that Ellie was going into a home where she could be herself, and we wouldn’t force her to do anything she didn’t want to do.
Ellie the Electric Cat
Here’s the thing about Ellie. She has very long, fine, fur that picks up static like a sheet that has never seen a bottle of Downy. We live in Colorado, where the high in the humidity range is usually around 40%. This is not a great place for a cat with electric fur. Her fur also tends to be a playground for faeries, and is constantly knotting up. Getting ahead of the knots, even with daily brushing, is pretty much impossible, so sometimes we have to cut lumps of fur off of her. In fact, when we first brought her home her fur was about 3/4 inch long, and very plush. We realized after about six months that she must have been shaved, because the longer we had her, the longer her hair grew, until it reached its current length of about two inches. She had come from a semi-feral environment, so probably had not been pampered at all until she came to the rescue. We suspect they shaved her when they spayed her, because that was the more humane way to rid her of a body full of clumped up fur.
That’s a lot of fine, electric fur to deal with. And it’s why she can be so high-stim. Every time she’s touched, you can hear the static. We pet her very carefully and keep her brushed. We have never had a problem with her lashing out, and she is the biggest lap baby of the bunch. Her favorite thing is to curl up with us in the evening and sleep while we watch TV.
I suspect that Ellie might be the reincarnation of another cat we had. The funny thing is, in their previous incarnations, if this is the cat I suspect it is, Tolstoy and this cat, Morpheus, were not friends. Tolstoy essentially drove Morpheus out of the house (Morpheus got fed up with being hassled every time he came upstairs, and one day he went out the front door and I knew we’d never see him again.)
Maybe bringing “a friend” back with him is Tolstoy/Jackson’s way of making amends for what went down in their previous incarnations. In this life they don’t have a lot to do with one another, but they are friendly and happy. That’s plenty to ask for, and receive.
Morpheus, by the way, was black.
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