Sunday, June 21, 2009

My Miss Kitty

To begin, I am very allergic to cats.  I can sneeze all night long if I have been around one, and my eyes get red and puffy with my nose running everywhere.  So, in summary, I can never own a cat even though I would really like to have one.

Part of the deal was that I would watch the family cat for about two weeks before my adventures to Italy.  This is no ordinary cat though.  This cat has been around for 12 years and during those 12 years I am sure she noticed that I enjoyed the family dog a lot more.  It may have been the fact that I would stuff her head into socks and watch her run around the room.  It may have also been because I would trap her in her boo box and watch her try to fight her way out.  However, it could be because I once tried to place her in the washing machine while laughing at her attempt to keep at least 2 paws stretched out over the large opening to prevent this from actually happening.  Or maybe it was the pillows I would throw at her.  Anyway, we had a mutual understanding of "You stay on your side and I will stay on mine."

Now the roles have changed.  She has become sick and needs constant care, well at least a shot of insulin twice a day for the rest of her life, and it is up to me now to take care of her.  The first few days were difficult.  She hid from me under the bed and I had Adam push her out with a broom.  My logic was that if she got mad at him then she would more likely trust me, and since Adam had and really has no desire of connecting with this creature then it worked.

After a while I just got into the habit of closing the bedroom door so she couldn't even get the chance to  directly center herselfunder the bed.

Then one day she actually came up to me and brushed up against my leg.  Progress!  So I had to go against my instincts and bend over to pat her.  Yes I paid for it later with a sneezing fit and runny nose, but it was worth it.  Our relationship was growing and she now came to me for comfort and of course food.

Things were going just fine until I noticed something was very different in her.  She sniffed the floor as my dog would do and seemed to be on the trail of something.  Even if I called to her she did not look up.  I found her trying to climb into the corner next to the piano and no amount of calling could change her course.  Something was wrong.  I picked her up and her nails dug into me.  I placed her by her food again watching to see what she would do.

Adam and I watched her with her head down walk behind the door and try to get through the small opening by the hinges.  At this point my mind flashed back to what my parents had told me about her when her medication was wrong.  She was doing the same things.  

"Ok its 6:18pm.  I hope I can make it to the pet hospital before they all leave."  I grabbed my keys and ran to the car.  Adam called after me, "give them a call."  So I ran back in, my heart beating in my ears and my nerves on edge.   I dialed the number in the phonebook.  "This number has been disconnected."  Why?!  I dialed again.  Same thing.  I then ran to the car and pulled out of the driveway just missing another car on the road.  Thank heavens they saw me.  

I raced to the pet hospital.  The lights were off and doors were locked and the only noise came from the pets buried somewhere in the center of the building.  I could not hold my self together anymore and began to let myself sob.  I felt I had no control, I did not know what to do.  

Let me try my parents.  I called my dad first.  But only his voice mail answered me, and so I tried my mom.  The same.  I raced home with tears streaming down my face.  What do I do?

I came inside where Adam was waiting for me.  I walked to him and cried uncontrollably to him.  I don't know what to do.  I don't know what to do.  What do I do?  I watched Penny as I was saying this which only made me cry harder.  I was watching her deteriorate before me.  I tried calling my dad again and when his voice mail came again I made a plea for help to it as if he would be able to hear me if I just tried hard enough.  

Adam then showed me another number in the phone book for me to try.  This time it worked and a voice on the other end told me to leave a message for the doctor on-call.  I left a somewhat audible message and waited.  Why hasn't he called back?  Adam help me find another animal hospital that is open.  I found one.  $85 just come in.  Everything else was added on.  

I just sat on the chair held in place for what seemed like a half hour.   I then remembered that my mom said she had placed a bit of honey on her nose the last time she did this, so I opened the cupboards searching for the honey I knew would be there.  After spreading some on her nose I continued to watch.  Then the phone rang.  Oh thank heavens it was the doctor getting back to me.  I told him everything I could then agreed to meet him at the clinic to do some tests.  I grabbed the cat and Adam and we went straight there.  I watched Penny try to fit herself through the small bars of her crate.  Don't hurt yourself Penny and I would push her nose back.

He arrived and I remember how calm I felt when he was explaining to me what was happening.  I would have given him a huge hug once we left but I was covered in cat hair which I paid for later.  On the way home I sneezed and sneezed and sneezed but I didn't mind, Penny would be ok.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Home at Last

It may have been because it was late at night and I was already on the verge of losing mental barriers, but when my eyes took in the image of the house, when my mind was quickened by the smells, when my bare feet felt the soft cool wood floor, and when my hands had touched the so familiar walls, I broke.  My body leaned over the back of a gentle couch and my heart swelled as tears rolled down my cheeks.  I was home.

The feeling was so familiar and yet it was as if I hadn't felt it in a long time.  I felt warm, peace and love in this house.  I saw my family in what was left behind.  Now they are far away across the world in a land of more green rolling hills and singing bells that sound out the hour. "The soccer ball out front of course was Emily."  Maybe she played with it during the last few moments of being at home.  So familiar.  

Even now my eyes burn from on coming tears.  "I miss this. I miss this."  My heart aches with the realization I can't see them like when I lived here.  I can't walk into the bonus room and try to get Emily up from her sleep.  I can't lie on the bed and fall asleep while my dad tries to solve a puzzle on the computer.  I can't go into Dan's room at night and chat till the morning hours, and I can't descend to the basement to find my mom working on her artwork while listening to her songs.  I can't watch Will putting his puzzles together.  "My home, I missed you.  I have traveled far to be held again within your walls and feel your warmth.  I know, I wish I didn't have to leave, but I will return."

My heart is quieting and I am relaxing in the chair as I finish my thoughts.  I am going to enjoy today.