Well, dear hearts, I have one you can file in the “Ripley’s Believe It or Not” folder. If any of you have had the misfortune of experiencing a case of shingles, you’ll be able to relate to this article, and I won’t have to remind you how painful the experience was. In my case, I developed facial shingles, which is said to be the most painful, and wound up with PHN (post herpetic neuralgia) which means constant pain for weeks, months or even years after the shingles have subsided. Some people who wind up with this torturous PHN get over it in two to three months, some in six months to a year, and some poor souls have to live with it the rest of their lives. There is no cure, and very little in the way of medication that helps.
But, I digress. What I really want to tell you about is a do-it-yourself treatment for this pain that I’m still not convinced wasn’t a figment of my imagination or wishful thinking. My cat Jada is a lap-lander and when a lap is not available she’ll plop on any part of my body that’s easily accessible. Last night she plopped on my pillow next to my head on my painful side. I reached over to scratch her, and she started purring. I put my face next to her belly, and could feel the vibration of her purr. I read somewhere that cats not only purr when content, but also when in distress or pain, and that the decibel of the purr is soothing and healing. I don’t think I had my face next to her for more than five minutes, but when I pulled away I realized that my pain had subsided to a tolerable level. Maybe it was the fact that it relaxed me and relieved my tension, or maybe the decibel of the purr actually gives the same results as meditation. All I know is that the tables have turned in my relationship with Jada . . . I’m now going to be the one doing the plopping on Jada every chance I get!
There always has to be a moral to Allie’s stories, and the moral to this one is that everyone should have at least one of these warm, furry, lovable little pain relievers. If you have arthritis in your fingers, just pet that kitty and stir up a purr. If the pain is in your knees, put her on your lap and do a kitty massage. Try snuggling up to your kitty the next time you have a headache. I don’t know if you will get the same results as I did, but it won’t cost you anything to try it out. It won’t make your stomach bleed like aspirin does, or irritate you liver and bladder like some of the other OTC pain relievers do. And, of course, the love between you and your kitty is never a waste of time.
But, I have to warn you that there may be side effects. Some people may find themselves winding up with three, four or more kitties just to make sure their “fix” is always readily available. Be aware that none of the addiction hotlines have a remedy for this addiction, so you risk becoming a “Kitty Junky” for the rest of your life!!
There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life:
Music and Cats. Albert Schweitzer