significance of mottos

kaya skye

not fighting my- demons-we joined- forces
Purred: Sat Jul 31, '10 12:53pm PST 
i'm not going to go into great detail here, because lately when i go into great detail i tap into a stream of consciousness that some people regard as an ecohazard. but i was thinking-i do a lot of that, those of us who are involuntarily intoxicated can do little else, and that not well. and i was thinking about mottos. specifically, catster mottos.

i have lots of accounts for cats, but only 3 cats currently live here. roommate moved away, cats went missing, churrah passed away, some i have on catster that belong to no one at all, but i'm trying to find help for them. all have mottos. the current 3:

"not fighting my demons, we've joined forces."
"darling black hole of emotional need."
wesley-who i know less well than the others:
"i'm highly reflective!"

later i'll speak on how i think yes, these work for them. for now...i think they're important. because being able to find a motto that's really them, means to me i've managed to see that cat as a person. and i sorta feel like crap, so i have to lie down now, no idea if this will catch anyone else's imagination/interest or not. but here it is.


No...the magic- is still- here...!!!
Purred: Sun Aug 1, '10 9:33am PST 
Dear Kaya Skye and Terri.......I think the significance of mottos is (or can be) very interesting and important regarding the way one sees one's cats.....

I had a little look at mine and a little think......all the mottos of my cats relate to ME or are totally bland....eg. Tambi's: 'Fur lumps gone!! 2nd August'....physically very important...(poor little beasty.....the furlumps are NOT good).....but SO UNIMPORTANT in the scheme of things.......then I thought to change it to: 'heart of the household', which is true.... or even 'keeps my Meouwmy and her husband together' which is also true (but probably too long and, really, too complicated), BUT is that how she sees HERSELF? I would think: 'Partially free, but not totally....this pisses me off' would be more to the point for her, or: 'yes, kisses is good, but raw minced lamb is better'......!!!

But Terri.....Kaya's motto about the demons.....does that not relate to you too?

Jan and (the really rather appalling) Tambolina


I am DEFINITELY- the big cheese- now......
Purred: Sun Aug 1, '10 9:40am PST 
ps.....Colly's motto IS a bit bland, BUT also (nearly) true......he IS the 'Big Cheese' now......but, unfortunately, only because there is no-one else.....!!!


I get cuddles- 'on tap'......
Purred: Sun Aug 1, '10 9:47am PST 
and poor Miss Lillie's motto does not cover the pain in her heart (I think).....we have never loved her as she should be loved......and I think she has been lonely and sad (although she has always tried to kiss and love everyone - kitties and humans both)......I think (imagine) that, now we have realised the lack that she has had, her motto ought to be: 'Greatly loved now' or (from her point of view): 'I am happy now I am greatly loved and perhaps my fur will grow again now'

Don't know........

kaya skye

not fighting my- demons-we joined- forces
Purred: Tue Aug 3, '10 3:18pm PST 
yes, kaya's motto also works for me. applause kaya's motto is the motto i use for myself in an autism forum-but it was kaya's first.laugh out loud she had other mottos, as i observed her making her way from feral to bold to somewhat-socialized but anxious...where she remains, but the way she expresses her anxiety is what caused me to give her that motto. the stealing of rhymon's toys and placing them by my pillow when rhymon first came, but that came much later. as a young kitten, she buried favorite toys in her litter or in her water in our room...died laughing that she not only chose beanie baby shark to bring to bed, but stored him in her (full) water dish during the day. i was forever rescuing sharky. both she and shyloh would bury their food-but kaya chose to cover hers with my underwear.

i knew kaya was anxious-dilated pupils and body language, plus the flaky ocd thing with the litterbox that most of you know about. did not know then that her ocd was going to get as full-blown as it later did and has-i reserve the feliway or rescue remedy option as a not-quite last resort, both because it affects all the household cats and because her coping mechanisms do tend to kick in, but i'm not sure i can deal with another spate of baldness, especially if she starts stripping the fur off the others again. jadyn still has a stripe of fur near the base of her tail that looks different than the surrounding fur...which is just a weird location, but better than when shyloh denuded kaya's ears, i guess. but until it got that bad, she was my role model for dealing with anxiety. hailhailhail entirely serious. all hail the orange trickster demon.way to gohailway to go it didn't get that bad until i got sick and kept going in the hospital and leaving her for so long-and then she just overloaded. eekeekeek she'd had so many changes, so fast-rhymon coming, the fire, the move because of the fire, me starting to get sick was probably giving her some anxietyeven before the fire, then melinda leaving AND TAKING SHYLOHshockcryshock...then we lost churrah last october. and that i think was the last straw.

or the straw before last, technically. see, she was dealing before then, living up to her motto. my first hospitalization, while shyloh was still there, her reaction was to either glom onto shyloh or be the invisible kitty while i was gone, not letting andrea or melinda near her. when i came home, she was all over me for a day or two. then she started meowing-which she does more than she once did, back then at less than a year old (about wesley's age, actually) almost never-until everyone was in the den and pretty much: WHAT, CAT? so she jumps up on top of the entertainment center and proceeds to throw everything off that belonged to me. picked up bags of medicine in her teeth and swung them a goodly distance. keys. cigarettes (still smoked then). lighters. spare change. picked up my hat and "killed" it, then dropped it. if it belonged to melinda, andrea, or the cats it was untouched. if it was mine, it was on the floor. hailbig laughhail

honestly, i'd never seen anything quite like it. still haven't, really. i described this on catster at the time, but i think i underplayed it-i wasn't as sure of myself here back then, and was afraid people would believe i was exaggerating. nope. of course, by now i've met enough cat people, heard enough stories...yes, they're that smart. no one was going to think i was just bragging. at the time it was pretty awe-inspiring--especially when i lost enough anthrocentrism to realize it wasn't kaya i should be in awe of, but all cats, all animals, and the simple fact that humans aren't as alone on the planet as they choose to believe...of course then you get sort of sad, but never mind.

to continue, kaya then proceeded to love on andrea and melinda for days and ignore me-i "retaliated" by loving on rhymon, or trying to, rhymon was less than socialized at that point, though getting there. and of course, we moved on and got back to the business of being ourselves. and then the fire and the move and melinda took away shyloh, and i went back in the hospital--and while i was in the hospital kaya stopped eating. and i noticed some thin patches of fur on her belly and paws. it got pretty thin, then stopped and grew back in. this was when the vet i mostly like said probably ocd since she had no fleas for it to be a flea allergy, plus her personality, plus where the hair loss was. considering how much turmoil there had been, he said just wait and see-this was fall/winter, '08-it might turn out to be self-limiting. it seemed to be.

most of '09 andrea, melinda and i were sick with respiratory problems-some of the cats, particularly shyloh, also had problems. we're guessing either the fire or what they used to put it out with. we weren't supposed to stay the night after they put it out, but really had nowhere to go-basically the fire marshall said he wouldn't call the cops (or tell the on scene cops we intended to stay), but that he was declaring it condemned not just because of the structural damage, but because it was toxic to breathe in. told us we really shouldn't be there without masks. (and here i am on oxygen...hmmm.thinking yes, i feel stupid. though technically my lungs already had some scarring, from the weirdo pneumonia in '06...) kaya stuck very, very close. she wasn't very playful, but i think she was worried. '09 was the year of ayla and jadyn and many other positive things...but i was getting progressively sicker.

and fall came around, and with it the flu-and after it pneumonia, and i came home from the hospital on oxygen...kaya wasn't balding, but she was chewing her claws a lot. she does that. i don't know if that's something she picked up from me biting my nails, or what. then, oct. 31...churrah the magnificent, our revered elder, our senior citizen ninja--joined the wild hunt. (and i chose oct. 31 as wesley's birthday, which for all i know could even be right. saw him first as a tiny-eared blue-eyed thing early to middish november, thought at the time, ah, the samhain litter from a black cat, how appropos.) and the next time i came out of the hospital--kaya was balding and even had irritated skin from the compulsive grooming. actually, tell the truth and shame the devil-it wasn't obvious until i took a warm wet cloth with a bit of dawn to clean off the bare skin and looked at the cloth, but at some point the skin had broken. there was dried blood, anyway.

dried blood-but no flea bites? i couldn't get to the vet, no one could take me. but fleas were possible, having taken ayla and co. in-though i had given everyone preventatives. i forget how we got ahold of the (capstar? i want to say capsaicin but that's absurd.), but we did. no change. called vet again, got the guy i didn't like.
it was just...ocd. she was biting herSELF. obsessive grooming. all i had to do was look at my own bitten nails and think of the times i'd ripped a nail off-yes it hurt and i didn't want to hurt but i couldn't stop. or think of when i used to twirl my hair and pull out strands until i had to cut it ultra-short so i wouldn't look like i had a bad case of static or a crazy person when a significant amount would come out and my scalp would bleed. again, not wanting to harm myself. just ocd. just the can't stop myself disease.
told the vet i had ocd and he interrupted and told me that no, i didn't give it to her. (this is one reason we are looking for another vet, he seems to think i am simple.) but, he conceded, my anxiety was no doubt contributing to hers. thanks. and i'll take that bill with a side of guilt, thanks. (and another reason we are...you feel me?)actually, one of our vets i love, but i can't control which vet we see...you know how it is. never mind. i want to go somewhere i know who i'll see, for my sake and theirs.

so kaya and i share a demon. and she has other demons i don't, no doubt. as i have others she doesn't. but we BOTH usually do a pretty good job of joining forces with them instead of fighting them...but sometimes things just mount up, and you have to beat a few off with a stick. or reevaluate your demon assets and deploy them more creatively.

because i bet you thought ocd was the bad demon in the story. nope. ANXIETY is the bad demon in this story. ocd is an adaptation response to overpowering anxiety. without that adaptation response the sentient organism would not in any way be functional. it's not the best response,maybe-but it IS a response. anxiety itself can be used as an energy source. ocd, when things are a bit calmer, has all sorts of positive side effects.

c.s. lewis had the right of it in 'the screwtape letters', i think, when he said all evil was twisted good. and all the bad stuff in our lives can be raw material for good-my kitty taught me that.



I get cuddles- 'on tap'......
Purred: Thu Aug 5, '10 9:25am PST 
Dear Terri (and Kaya)...your story of Kaya's demons and their manifestation was very interesting....thank you......

It does seem, from what you say, that Miss Lillie's baldness COULD be to do with the fact that she did not get enough love......(although the vet reckons it is flea allergy or food allergy)....her fur is growing again (a little) now that we give her more time and more cuddles....but also she has just had 5 teeth out and a good teeth clean....so perhaps it is her better general health that is stopping the ocd.......don't know......

But, oh, it is SO GOOD to give her cuddles 'on tap'......she is blossoming......she sleeps on me at night now.......and wriggles around and cries when I go near her when she is lying down....'cuddle, I want cuddle' she says......and I think of all the years that I more-or-less ignored her while I had Raddy......

Oh, Terri......I have ocd too......but I have learned (more or less) to cope with it (by giving in to it, but giving myself plenty of time to what I call 'faff-about' before I go out (eg. make sure the taps are turned off (many times), make sure the oven is turned off (many times), make sure all the ciggie-ends are in a safe place (many times), make sure the cats are in and safe (many times) etc, etc, etc).....well, you know what I mean, anyway, don't you?.......(so, perhaps, I have come to terms with some of my demons, too).......

I will try to look at my cats again more closely......to see WHO they are....(perhaps I should do the same with my husband.....!!!)......

best wishes to you and them (and your ocd....!!!)



No...the magic- is still- here...!!!
Purred: Thu Aug 5, '10 9:27am PST 
Terri......I LOVE IT that Samhain and The Wild Hunt is also important to you.......