Guest post by Siena Lee-Tajiri

A note from Ingrid: Last week, I introduced you to the Love and Above Cat Club. Please welcome creator and founder Siena Lee-Tajiri, who will be contributing a monthly Sunday column.

2014. Las Vegas, Nevada. SuperZoo pet industry tradeshow. I exited a crowd of Jackson Galaxy fans who were excitedly waiting to meet him so I could steal a moment of calm and a bit of fresh air. Almost like a magnet, I immediately zoomed in on a vision wearing “pet power” purple. Amidst a sea of pet lovers and pet business owners, there stood Ingrid King, in grounded calm and peace with a sweet smile and kind eyes. Instantly, shoulders dropped, I exhaled.

I remember this moment so vividly because it was the first time I ever felt truly understood regarding the kind of love I had for Cumin, my beloved soul cat. I was there for work as part of Jackson Galaxy’s team, and thankfully, it was often so hectic, I didn’t have time to worry. But in the moments between the work, as I checked my text messages to see if the pet sitter had sent an update on Cumin, there was Ingrid, opening her heart about leaving her beloved Ruby and Allegra. She shared with me how she’d tell them to count the times it gets dark to know when she’d be home again… so if she was going to be gone three nights, they would count three times when it got dark and then they’d know she’d be home soon. I texted my pet sitter to relay to Cumin to count two times when it got dark…


But it wasn’t until 2016 when Cumin passed away, 6 months after being diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma, that I truly realized the depth of the love we shared.  At the time of her transition, she had been my longest, and most unconditionally loving and loyal relationship. When she passed, I felt like the world dropped out from under me. I loved her so much and when she was gone, I was at a loss how to truly love myself without her, because in caring and loving her, I felt like I was caring and loving myself.

In caring and loving her, I felt like I was caring and loving myself.

This July 13th will be five years since Cumin passed, and I’m still learning how to love all of myself in the way I loved her. Through this journey, I realized that I couldn’t be the only one feeling this way. Then I started thinking of all my cat loving friends and family and it dawned on me that there are so many of us cat lovers out there, loving our cats above and beyond, who need a little support loving ourselves the same way.


And so the Love and Above Cat Club was born…Cumin-inspired! My intention and vision for the Love and Above Cat Club is to create and support a community of cat lovers on their self-love journey through information, inspiration and an offering of flower essences made just for you. I’m so excited to bring my experience as a holistic health practitioner, energy healer, cat lover extraordinaire, and my 12 years working with Jackson Galaxy, to the club.

I’m honored to be here with all of you and FOR all of you! Thank you so much for reading and I look forward to what love and fun we’ll create together.

With Love and Above,


Please visit the Love and Above Cat Club, sign up for their mailing list, and browse their shop.

18 Comments on Sunday Cat Love and Above: Meet the Cat Who Inspired the Love and Above Cat Club

  1. Over a month ago now my cat Almond Joy got her claw caught in my pajamas and in gently trying to remove it she got frightened and bit the top of my right hand. My entire hand and forearm was red and swollen by the next day so I went to urgent care and then the ER and the hospital for a week where I was on intravenous antibiotics and then a hand therapist told me to see a hand surgeon so I have an appointment. Two of my fingers have tendon damage. I have had 2 people ask me if I was going to have my cat put down which was horrifying to hear. My love for this cat and all my cats is unconditional. They are my family no matter what. I probably do love them more than myself so that is something I need to work on.

    • Thank you for sharing, Nancy! This is exactly what the Love and Above Cat Club is really all about. That love you have for Almond Joy, and the love we Conscious Cat readers have for our cats, is on another level! To us, putting our cat down for what happened is not even a consideration! (I was horrified too just reading that!) And you mentioned working on yourself as well and you’re so not alone! We who love our cats above and beyond tend to need some help in this area. But what’s amazing is that as we naturally continue to love our cats unconditionally, we can learn to love ourselves at this similar level. How we love our cats shows our current capacity for love! Thanks again for sharing your story!

      • Thank you so much Siena for your very kind response. I know anyone who follows Ingrid as I do would understand and feel exactly like I do. Our love for our cats is on another level absolutely!

  2. Ingrid
    Thank you for sharing the love and light from above that is Siena and Cumin
    Her message of love yourself like you love your cat rings true for me.
    Can’t wait to read her column every month
    So beautiful to be supported by your
    Loving Cat community

  3. I’ve very much loved all the kitties I’ve lived with over the years, but to find your soul cat is extremely special. I recognized her the moment I saw her in a box with her tiny siblings, whom had been rescued from an abandoned NYC apartment building. She passed from CKD after living with me for over 20 years. Our bond grew even stronger as I cared for her. She left a huge hole in my heart.
    Thank you, Siena, for letting me know others understand the “love and above” I shared with her. <3

    • Oh, Debi! Thank you so much for sharing this with me! What was her name? 20 years is an incredible amount of time to share with a soul cat…but still never enough. Just like you, I knew the moment I met Cumin at a shelter in Hawaii. All her siblings had been adopted and she was alone with the cutest orange splotch on her forehead in the shape of a mango! She crawled up my neck under my hair and I knew. You are certainly not alone in this level of love! Thanks again for sharing!

  4. I love what you have done in Cumin’s memory. It’s a great way to memorialize her. It sounds like you had the same connection as I had with Nani. I refer to her as my soul cat too. By the way, I would love to meet Ingrid too. To me, she as as important to the cat community as Jackson Galaxy.

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