Everyone wanted to know how the photo shoot went with Chloe so I'll tell you. Purina is getting involved in breast cancer awareness month by donating $$$$$$ to Susan Komen. Their packaging is going pink during October too. Part of the program is focusing on breast cancer survivors who had cats that were very helpful and comforting through treatment. They had three survivors do the filming where we told our stories on our diagnosis, treatment and precious cats that were by our side the entire time we went through treatment. Those videos will be online and I will post as soon as it is ready. Additionally, they are trying to get other people (doesn't have to be a survivor) to upload their pictures of themselves and their cats. For every picture uploaded, they will donate $1 to Komen.
So, how did the travel and shoot go with Chloe??? Well, travel with a cat is never a walk in the park. Chloe peed in her cage on the plane and then rolled around in it (I think it's a way of acting out or because she is scared). Fun. When we got to the hotel I scrubbed the cage in the shower and then had to wash Chloe. That's always fun. The next day for the shoot we were a one of the survivor's lovely houses, but she had two cats and a dog that Chloe could smell. (she was not happy). They wanted me to bring Chloe out on the set in the family room to tell my story while holding her. Problem is there were about 10 people out there in a big new room (I had her staying in the bedroom), with video and regular cameras, lighting everywhere and a big microphone above our heads and all this stuff was operated by men (Chloe prefers women strangers over men) Needless to say, she freaked out, hissed, scratched me as I tried to hold on to her, and finally ran away from the set.
We tried a couple times and it was looking like it was a waste of an effort for me to bring Chloe all the way out to St Louis. Once she went back to the bedroom, she calmed down and was totally happy. I told them that just one camera and one interviewer in the BEDROOM, might be the only way Chloe doesn't freak out. We tried this and I managed to do the entire interview while petting Chloe and she layed there purring and rolling on her back. Once we did it HER way, everything went smooth and Queen Chloe was happy.
I think I did okay as well. I was a little stressed because of Chloe and I was tired, but I tried to stay positive and focused. I had a pound of makeup on, but they assured me I would look natural on screen. I think I did good telling my story. We had a couple scripted things we were supposed to say. I think I make scripted talking sound well...scripted (not an actress). I'm hoping they only show me telling my story and have one of the other girls when they did the scripted talk.
Anyway, I included the short story I gave Purina about Chloe and how much she helped me through treatment. It's hard to explain where I think people would REALLY get it how important she is to my life as I have had her at my side all through my cancer treatment.
Chloe Story for Purina (this would be good for those of you who didn't start following my blog when I was diagnosed the first time)
Before starting treatment (first diagnosis) all I could really think about was chemo and my fear of all the known side effects. I was scared and I could not think about anything else. Kevin knew how bad I felt since being diagnosed and he would do anything to make me happy again and take away my fear.
Kevin never wanted a cat since he was allergic. Everything changed dramatically when one day a doctor said to me “you have breast cancer and you will need chemotherapy and radiation.” Now I had some leverage! Thinking about getting a kitten was the only thing that seemed to put a smile on my face. Kevin started to consider it and I knew there was a chance. I promised that if he was really allergic we could bring the cat back. I said I would brush the cat twice a day, give it weekly baths, and that our bedroom would be off limits for the cat. The cancer card turned out to be pretty powerful, and he finally agreed to go kitty shopping with me.
We must have gone to about 7 pet stores that day. There were two of the cutest kittens at the last Petsmart we went to. They were tiny, not even 7 weeks old. They were the last two from a group of 15 rescue kittys. We took out the cute little girl that almost looked like a baby lion. She sat on our laps and was very calm, which was very important to Kevin. I was so happy and she was ours. Our little Chloe. Thanks Cancer!!!
Chloe and I spent every minute through my treatment together. I slept all the time and she slept right by my side being especially attentive on the days I really felt bad. I have heard that cats can sense when humans feel bad and I am convinced that it is so true. She would even lay down on areas of my body that were particularly hurting me. Amazing. When I had to go for Chemo or scans I would bring a picture of Chloe as a bookmark to remind myself to smile and think about her. We would play together and I talked to her all the time. She is so comfortable with me that she can sleep on my lap and if I need to get up I can pick her up in my arms and she will stay sleeping, curled up in a little ball and let me pass her on to my husband without waking up. I can trim her claws while she's out that’s how soundly she sleeps.
She made me smile, played with me and gave me company while I was going through cancer treatment alone at home. Any time I would feel bad she was my magic weapon where all I had to do was think of her and I would smile. Even at the times of my greatest despair when Kevin didn’t know what to do or say, he would get Chloe and put her in my arms and it always made me feel better. I always have to smile around her. There is something about a cat’s unconditional love and grace. Something that translates to you when you really tune into how your cat can live in the moment and suddenly worrying seems silly. I know my cat loves me.
Chloe is a very important part of our family. She is always around with the two of us when we are home. She's on our laps if we're on the couch, she's in the sink if we are in the bathroom, she's laying outside the shower if I'm in there, she's in front of the computer screen if we are on the computer (practically every post I write Chloe is in the way sitting in front of the screen or laying on my lap), she's on our bed every night, she's in the kitchen if we are cooking, and she's outside the sauna doors begging us to come in the entire time we are in the sauna scratching at the door knob trying to get the door open.
Kevin has absolutely ZERO allergies to her. As for the promises I made to get her (brushing her and keeping her out of the bedroom etc etc..)…she sleeps on our bed every night, she does not like to get brushed so I don’t even attempt it and Chloe is good enough at bathing herself, so I refrain from that chore as well. I keep Chloe away from bathing in the tub (unless she wants to drink water from the bottom of it) : ) Kevin loves her just as much as I do. She shows us her love for us by bringing us a mouse toy every single night before she jumps in bed with us. We truly love her.
*** I will post the professional photos from the shoot when I get them as well as the video***
***Health/Environment tip*** I went to Target, because yes, I AM now caught up and slightly obsessed in the Twilight book series. I had to buy the next one, Eclipse. Anyway I saw that Target has organic cotton sheet sets for about $40 for a queen bed. That's a great deal and they are VERY soft. They also have organic cotton decorative pillows, towels of all types, bath rugs and more. All very cheap. All very soft and they are all cute too.
Think about this. Cotton uses the most chemicals to grow out of any plant in the country. Getting organic cotton can really impact the environment.