“Jellicle cats are white and black
Jellicle cats are of moderate size
Jellicles jump like a jumping jack
Jellicle cats have moonlit eyes” (The jellicle ball, Cats)

The husband and I got a cat together quite soon after we moved in together.

People said ‘oooh it’ll be a baby next’ – but it wasn’t, despite our best attempts.

We loved our cat, she was a wonderful nice natured fluffy gorgeous thing. She grew to trust us, liked to socialise with us, and appeared to be sensitive to our moods and seek to be with us if we were feeling low. We considered her a member of the family, we said we were ‘best friends in a three’.

Our cat was a grown up when we got her, and we had a long and happy ten years together before she succumbed to cancer last year.

Now we don’t have our cat, or a baby.

And we want both.

It makes us sad, the cat and the infertility all seem tied up together and being sad about one inevitably makes us sad about the other.

People keep going on at me asking when we’re going to get a new cat, but we’re not going to just now. Firstly, she meant so much to us and it was awful to lose her – we’re not ready yet. But secondly we’re doing IVF and we hope to have a baby. We didn’t think it was fair to involve a new cat in all that.

It upsets me when people make a big deal about how pets are not the same as children.

I know they are not, obviously, I’m not stupid.

But it is hurtful to hear for those of us for whom it might be the closest we ever get.