We had a good Thanksgiving last week. We were spending the day with my mom, and went out to dinner at a restaurant/banquet hall that was having a special Thanksgiving menu. It was fun, M. had a blast and about half of her dad’s prime rib and none of the pizza she had picked out, and the food was great. We even had some leftovers to take home.
I completely forgot to do an update yesterday. Here is my update from last week, and my plan (such as it is) for this week:
Last week nothing related to paperwork or bills happened. I did work a little on M.’s room, did some menu planning and even cooked a couple of the things I had planned. I photographed all of the items I have for eBay except for the cookbooks, and posted about half of what I photographed.
This week is a bit up in the air. We are getting ready to put one of our cats to sleep, so mostly we’re doing things that allow us to sit with her too. She is our oldest cat, Kitty, and is only six. When she was about two she was hit by a car. She hid out in the woods for two weeks before hobbling home with a broken pelvis and hips. We took her to the vet and found based on x-rays that she had already begun healing, so unless we wanted to have the vet re-break what had already healed there was nothing we could do but wait and see. Cats heal very quickly so two weeks after being hit meant that she had walked home from her hiding place in the woods, although her back legs wouldn’t really stay under her very well at the time. We brought her home from the vet, gave her medication for the pain and kept her in the kennel that had belonged to our dog when she was a puppy to keep Kitty from further injuring herself, but still giving her plenty of space for her litter box and her food and water bowls without having them be right next to each other.
After about a week, we let her start roaming the house, and before long she was ready to go outside again. The vet explained that despite her extensive injuries—and I saw the x-rays so I know just how extensive they were—sometimes cats bodies would grow a sort of “false hip joint” that would allow them to start walking again. He wasn’t sure how well it would work with two hips, but was hopeful that she’d at least be able to walk. Kitty’s hip on one side had been broken and her pelvis had snapped in half. Her other hip had shattered and was nothing more than bone fragments. Still, she re-learned how to walk although one of her legs would kick out from under her sometimes when she tried to put weight on it at first. Within six months she wasn’t just walking, she was running, jumping and eventually climbing trees. If you saw her, you would never have known that there was anything wrong with her at all. Still, she struggled with keeping weight on and had trouble using her litter box at times.
We had been warned at the time of her initial vet visit there was a possibility based on the position of the broken bones that one of them might be blocking off part of her colon. Again, we had to wait and see how she healed. Eventually we realized that it was as the vet had feared, and she had a section of her digestive tract that was at least half-way blocked off. We took her to the vet and they “cleaned her out.” We switched to no dry food, and canned food that was aimed at easier digestion. After a couple of months we were back at the vet with the same issue. It became a regular occurrence. We considered putting her to sleep then, but other than her digestive issues she was clearly a very happy cat. She loved to be petted and snuggled, loved hunting mice and running (not climbing, running) up trees. She loved to eat, and was extremely friendly to everyone she met. She is the best cat I have ever known, and as long as she wasn’t in pain we didn’t have the heart to put her down.
Still, we’re not a financially well-off family, and $100-200 vet bills every month (or less) were not in the budget, so I learned to treat her at home. We figured that as long as we could keep her happy and healthy we would keep her with us, and if she started to suffer we would do what was best for her. Nearly four years. That’s how long I kept her going. Oral medication, non-oral medication, and an intimate knowledge of her digestion that I NEVER thought I’d have, and she did well for a long time. One of the dangers was that she would develop adhesions in her intestines from the bone pushing in, or a condition in cats called “mega-colon” which is basically a stretched out colon that doesn’t work right any more. She has since developed both, and has lost even more weight. She still eats, still loves attention, but she doesn’t want to go out as much anymore. She doesn’t hunt, although she will still attack yarn or string if it gets too close. Over the weekend she took a turn for the worse, and although she doesn’t seem to be in pain and is still eating and sleeping, it is obvious that she is not comfortable and the treatments have stopped working nearly at all. We will have to give in to the inevitable, and will be bringing her to the vet in the next day or so. We are all devastated, especially after one of our other cats disappeared just after our move at the beginning of October, so we are going suddenly from a three-cat family to a one-cat family all within a couple of months.
My plan for this week is to deal with Kitty, and help the girls deal with her loss. Other than that, I still have a couple of “to do’s” on my list:
1) Finish posting eBay items
2) Work on article idea and pitch it to appropriate publications
3) Work on website idea if there is time