When They Turn Your World Upside Down

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Having pets is sometimes a double-edged sword I have learned. This is Twiggy – many of you know her, some of you may not. She came to us in May of 2007, a scrawny runt of a kitten; hence, the name – she reminded me of the 1960s model.
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She was a little bit of a hell-raiser in those early days, attacking whatever she could. My attempts to keep her occupied with “safe” playthings was only sometimes successful.
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With time, she grew. She lost the scrawny look and embedded herself into the family, becoming especially fond of Bailey. Bailey had mixed emotions about that.
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In the fall of the year, when I was having chemo, she became my nap companion. She shared her body warmth with me, comforting, loving.
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She made herself part of the Christmas decorations, always needing to check out anything new that came into the house. Often going where no cat needed to go, although she would disagree with that concept.
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She was the huntress that felt a need to share her catch, to bring it inside the house. I cannot tell you how many times I found myself chasing a chipmunk, trying to herd it out the door after she had brought one in and released it. And birds – she was relentless. But she grew older, although still a young cat, and spent less time outside and more time inside, being less of a threat to the feathered and furry creatures. Until a couple of weeks ago, when she once again began delivering gifts to me – chipmunks. Twice I was able to get them safely out the door. Once, I was not. That one time became a problem.

I realized one day that she was eating very little, only a bite now and then. Sometime ago, she had figured out the dogs getting treats thing, and when they were given a treat she would yell until she was given one too. But no longer – she was not interested. I was worried, and so I made an appointment with the local vet, where she had gone since kittenhood. Except that vet had retired and sold the practice. I’ll not go into the details of that visit, but it did not go well and we ended up driving in to the bigger city down the road to the vet that takes care of my big furry girls. X-rays and a sonogram showed something in the stomach – surgery was required to determine what. They found a small bone that had punctured the intestine (I told her not to eat that chipmunk!), and nearby a tissue growth that had blocked the intestine. They removed that part, but there was something else in there, something that may or may not need further attention. They did not want to keep her under long enough to remove that, so they did a biopsy and we are awaiting the results.

She stayed at the vet for a few days, gradually regaining strength. Yesterday I brought her home. With medication. Liquid medication, which is better than a pill, but still not exactly a barrel of fun to administer. The first dosage last night ended up half in the cat, half on the cat and me. This morning I wrapped her like a burrito and it went better, but not without some fuss – not helped at all by Shasta’s need to come see what I was doing.

And so those days, the trauma of the vet episode, the surgery – the stress. She is “just” a cat. Ahhh, but obviously, my heart does not feel the “just”. I felt like my world had been turned upside down and it did not right itself until she was out of surgery and had gotten through a couple of days. I feel better now, as she feels better, and will hope the biopsy results are nothing of consequence. I am not looking forward to the trip back to the vet to have stitches removed – Twiggy is quite vocal when riding in the car. I must admit, however, that I viewed her sounds as a kind of music on the way home yesterday.
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Ah yes, the double-edged sword. The ability to make us smile, warm our hearts – and sometimes – to turn our world upside down. There’s a lot of similarity between having children and having pets, isn’t there?

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About Carol

I'm me - nothing unusual, just me. Widowed, 2 grown children who are my best friends, 2 dogs, 1 cat, retired, loving being retired. I am woman, I am strong.
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17 Responses to When They Turn Your World Upside Down

  1. Robin says:

    Yes, there sure is a lot of similarity between the two. I joked with one of the women at our vet’s office that I thought kids might have been easier in some ways, but that’s not really true. Chipmunks! Oh my. We had a cat, Shana, who liked to deliver chipmunks to us, usually alive although once she left a dead one smack in the middle of the kitchen floor where I found it when ushering guests who had come to stay with us for the weekend.

    Twiggy is a beautiful cat. I never feel the “just,” either. I hope Twiggy heals quickly and well, and that the biospy results turn out to be benign.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. honestme363 says:

    Very similar. Well wishes for a speedy recovery for your furry friend and that the results are normal.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. loisajay says:

    Carol, my heart aches for you. No, my cats are not ‘just’ cats. They are my babies and, with my kids moved onto lives of their own, they are my kids. Although one time, I did call my daughter ‘Parker’ and she was not amused. I hope all goes well with Twiggy. She is a pretty girl.

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  4. Carol — I relate to this post right down to the tips of my toes. Like yours, my heart is completely engulfed by the gentle paw of big old Miss Willa.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Lisa says:

    Beautiful, heartfelt words. Yes, it’s a double edge sword. I’m right there with you sista.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Best wishes for a speedy recovery and good biopsy report for Twiggy. Darn those chipmunks. I have always wondered where I would draw the line for pet treatments. Thankfully that has not been put to the test.And as for mixing up my daughter and my dog, I can’t tell you how many times I have called Elaine “Ebony” or vice versa.

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    • Carol says:

      I’m not sure where that line is either, but this episode did make a serious dent in the budget. If the biopsy report comes back bad – maybe that line will be crossed. I hope not.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Dear Carol,
    I am so sorry to hear of Twiggy’s troubles. I understand how you can come to love your furry friends. We spent $108 on antibiotics for a $6 hamster, and never questioned the bill when it came. I will be thinking of you both and sending good thoughts your way.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. pattisj says:

    Most certainly, pets become family. They depend on us to do for them longer than children. I hope Twiggy gets a good report. I love those wild eyes peeking from behind the poinsettia.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Dawn says:

    Of course they are family. I’m glad she is feeling better. Is she eating now?

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  10. leendadll says:

    considering how much stress i had reading that, i can only imagine the stress you’ve had living it. sending good juju to both of you!!
    whenever possible, i move the stitches back and forth to keep them from sticking to skin and under-skin, which allows me to remove them without another trip to the vet.

    Like

  11. Jayne says:

    They are very much family members so I completely understand the emotional state you will have been in. BTW, she is *so* much like our Grand Old Duchess ‘Pepper’, right down to the paler rusty patch over one side of her face. Sending all good thoughts to Ms. Twiggy and you…

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Joanne says:

    I’m sending love and healing thoughts to Twiggy, Carol, and hoping that by now she is eating again and feeling much better. xx

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  13. Heather says:

    Oh Carol, this brings me tears. I can relate to this all too well. I am so sorry that you guys are facing the same future we faced. Hugs to you my dear friend. Snuggle your Twiggy close while you can.

    Liked by 1 person

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