I confess, this is kind of a misleading title. My therapy cat visit wasn’t a marathon. But it was the day of the L.A. Marathon, with lots of closed roads blocking our path to the hospital we were scheduled to visit. My human usually avoids doing therapy cat visits on L.A. Marathon day, but this time around, she really wanted to get us down to this particular hospital. It turned out that the phone’s map app took good care of us, and the route it had got us to the hospital with plenty of time to spare.
The morning got off to a slow start, since the first few patients didn’t want visits. But then my human reluctantly entered the room of a patient who seemed preoccupied — and when she saw me, her face lit up! Patients who really want to see me get this special smile that my human has learned to recognize. We spent a lot of time with her. I laid down next to her and purred and made happy paws. At first, I laid next to her lower abdomen and not her chest like she wanted. My human explained that sometimes I liked to be next to the part of the patient that needed healing most. Then she picked me up and told me, “Her heart needs healing too!” I got it, and laid down under the patient’s arm and made happy paws there instead.
Another patient we saw had her family visiting. Although it was well covered up, the patient had an open wound in her chest, but she really wanted me on the bed with her. So my human put the sheet down next to the patient, and made sure I stayed next to her and didn’t move from my spot. That was a nice visit, and a couple of the family members wanted to pet me too. One man said that cats did not like him, but my human said I was nice and wouldn’t hurt him, so he petted me too.
The next man had a long row of stitches going down his abdomen, so once again my human made sure I didn’t get too close to his wound. He had some tattoos, and one was of a cat wearing an eye patch. He explained that was a cat he had. The cat had been a stray he was feeding, and then one day, the cat disappeared. When he showed up a few days later, his eye had suffered a horrible injury. The man took the cat to the vet, but couldn’t afford to pay for his surgery — he wasn’t even his cat. But the vet made a deal — he said that if the man promised to adopt the cat and take care of him, they would do the surgery for free. And the man wound up having the cat for 13 more years!
The last man we saw was sitting up on the bed and was so happy to see me. I laid down on the bed while me petted me. “I got here on Tuesday,” he told us, “and it doesn’t look like I’ll be getting out anytime soon.” He had been feeling a little down about that, he said, and my visit really brightened his day. I was so glad that my human didn’t let the L.A. Marathon get in the way of my visiting today! There were obviously patients who needed me here.
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