I’d like you to meet the newest member of my little family. This is Lila. She is nine months old, and I adopted her this weekend from a rescue.
I’ve been thinking about adopting another cat for a while. Originally, my plan was to adopt two kittens, preferably siblings, but then Eloise came into my life in the most serendipitous way possible. And I think adjusting to cat mom life with one cat who was just out of the kitten stage, rather than two rambunctious kittens at one time, was exactly what I needed.
But I wanted Eloise to have a sibling. I waited until she was settled in her new home and comfortable with me before beginning a search. It’s been a little over two months since I adopted Eloise and in that time, she has blossomed and has become my little shadow. Last week, a friend came over and kept remarking about how different Eloise seemed from the first time she met her. She’s now queen of the castle, just as I had hoped.
I had been following my shelter’s website for awhile and continuing to fall in love with kittens, only to see their pictures removed the next day. I finally decided to take a trip to the shelter with a fellow cat-loving friend on Saturday just to look. Maybe I’d find my furever friend, maybe not.
Lila was the first cat I saw. She was one of their newer rescues, arriving at the shelter a week ago. Like Eloise, she was found by a cat rescuer. Lila showed up one day outside the rescuer’s home and while she was trying to coax Lila inside, Lila was attacked by a tomcat. Lila ran away but showed up at the rescuer’s house again a few days later, and this time, she was able to trap her and bring her inside.
Lila’s cage had a warning. It said, “I’m shy. Please go slow and play with me in my cage.” How could I not fall in love with a cat who had that warning on her cage? Kindred spirits, I tell you.
I stuck my fingers in the slats of her cage and she immediately came up to me and rubbed against them. Then she flopped down in a playful manner and continued to rub her face all over my fingers. She was so in tune with me from the beginning, so playful and adorable.
It was instantaneous love. I tried looking at the other cats at the shelter, and also tried to convince myself that it was crazy to adopt a cat so soon It felt so spontaneous! (This is also how I felt before adopting Eloise, ha.) But I also knew that if I left the shelter without her, or if I looked on their website next week to see her picture gone, I would be devastated.
When it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be. You know?
I took her home on Saturday and have spent the weekend trying to introduce her and Eloise slowly. Eloise hasn’t been too keen on our new family member just yet. The one time I brought Eloise in the room with Lila, Eloise took one of her toys and when Lila tried to get it back, Eloise batted at her head and hissed at her. Sooo. It might be a process for them to fall in love.
Lila, though, she’s been an angel. She’s spending a lot of her time hiding under my bed but will emerge if I sit down on the floor and call to her. She will come up to me for pets and even flop down in my lap, and it’s honestly the sweetest thing ever. It warms my heart.
Of course, I have some reservations. I worry that Eloise will think I don’t love her enough. I worry about them never actually getting along. I worry about the financials of taking care of two cats. I worry that I haven’t handled the introduction as well as I should have. I worry that I may be turning into a crazy cat lady. (<– okay, that’s a joke. I don’t care if I’m a crazy cat lady!)
But it’s normal to have these worries, especially if you’re like me and seem to thrive on worrying about every possible worst-case scenario. It’s not a small step to take, adopting a cat, and it’s going to take some time for all of us to get used to this new normal. I am so, so happy, though, to have grown our family with this new little baby. Lila is the perfect addition, and now we are a full-on girl power home.
Welcome to your new furever home, my little lady love. I’m so happy you’re here.