I started a new year of therapy cat visits at the big hospital. I was on my leash heading for the Cancer Center when I was stopped by a resident who recognized me! She’s met me before and follows me on Instagram. That was fun.
I usually do some visiting in the Cancer Center waiting room. This time I even did some tricks for a couple of the people there. The patient in the infusion room, a pretty young woman, wanted to see me. As you know, I’m not the best lap cat, but I spent enough time with her to settle in and get comfy. She has been there quite a bit already and has met Josie (our program’s other therapy cat) but this is her first time seeing me. She loves cats, but her fiancé has dogs, so she was happy to have some kitty energy.
Next I went up to Pediatrics. My human and I could feel tension in the air. A baby was screaming, and security staff were watching over a psych patient. But on the other side of the wing, two girls were waiting to see me. The first girl was in bed, and her face lit up when she saw me. “She really wants a cat,” her mother said. “Well, she gets to have one for a few minutes,” my human said, and set me on the bed. I laid down across her and purred while her mother and my human chatted about cats and family.
The second girl was sitting up, and my human set me next to her so she could pet me. We were having a fun visit, but we had to cut it a little short. On Thursdays we are scheduled to go to Behavioral Medicine. But when we showed up there and all the patients were in bed, sleeping, or just not in a social mood. But a nurse wanted to come to the rec room and visit with me, and I was happy to do that.
On the way to sign out, I visited with a couple of staff members who were taking a break. They were so happy to see me…and of course, that made me happy too.
I always say we are here for the staff and visitors in addition to the patients. And sometimes it’s really obvious that it’s true. This visit was one of those. Like the mother my human was chatting with — I’m sure that took her mind off her worries about her daughter for a few brief minutes. And Behavioral Medicine is a tough gig. That nurse needed a lighthearted moment in the middle of the day. And I am happy to see everybody, so it’s a great way for my human and me to be of service.
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