Tuesday, October 05, 2004

A very special Run Jen Run

I’m really getting worried about my roommate, Judy. She’s just not herself lately. She’s moody, constantly yelling at me, never wants to hang out anymore. I was talking to her brother the other day and he said that she’s been really weird with him as well. Apparently they used to get along really well, but now he said it seems like he can’t do anything right around her.

She’s been sleeping all day, pacing around the apartment at night. I just don’t know what’s going on. The scariest thing is that I’ve caught her throwing up in the bathroom a couple of times. And once she just threw up right in the living room in front of me.

I think Judy might be bulimic.

Oh yeah, did I mention? Judy's a cat. She’s Siamese, a breed known for its slender physique, but I think maybe she has been taking the pursuit of a perfect 10 body a little too far.

I know that I’m at least partly to blame. Ever since I started working again, I haven’t had much time for her. I’m sure she’s tried to talk to me about her problems, but I was too busy watching Survivor or reading blogs to listen. And it probably doesn’t help that there have been so many extreme makeover type shows on TV. After a while, even a trim feline like Judy is bound to develop self-esteem issues.

In retrospect, I probably shouldn’t have bought that 2004 Cat Fancy Desk Calendar. I like to look at pictures of cats wearing sunglasses – I mean, who doesn’t? – but I never thought about the impact it might have on my own cats. What kind of message am I sending them when I make such a big fuss over a bunch of airbrushed pictures of cats I don’t even know, all gussied up and hamming for the camera? God, what have I done?!

I probably wouldn’t have even found out about her disease if I hadn’t walked in on Judy in mid-binge. On Sunday night, I heard a strange rustling coming from the kitchen, and when I went to see what all the ruckus was about, I saw Judy's slender tail sticking out of the cupboard. As I went over to get a closer look, I found her in the middle of eating almost an entire box of pumpkin shaped Halloween marshmallow Peeps. An entire box! I didn’t even get to try them yet! I’ve never even tasted the pumpkin shaped ones before! I had just cut open the plastic wrap a few hours earlier to let them dry out a little (that’s the way I like them).

She turned around as soon as she heard me screaming, “NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! Not my Peeeeeeeeeeps!!”

Judy tried to act nonchalant, but her face said it all – orange marshmallow sticking to her whiskers, blue-eyed guilt at being caught in the act. The one thing I’ve always read about bulimics is that the binge and purge cycle causes a great deal of shame, which throws them into a deeper depression, further fueling the disease.

I cannot let Judy spiral downward any further than she already has. So as soon as this year is over, I’m going to throw out my 2004 Cat Fancy calendar. But maybe I’ll just keep the June picture as a motivational tool for all three of us. I think we all have a little healing to do, and this may just give us the inspiration we need.

Oh, June. I don’t know if I could have made it through all my months of unemployment if it hadn’t been for him. Every time I felt like I couldn’t go on, I’d just flip open that calendar to June, and somehow I just knew that everything was going to be all right. I mean, if that little guy can make it, then there’s hope for us all. Don’t you give up, little buddy! Hang in there!