Last night I dilly dallied about as if I were trying to put as much time between me and leaving for Enterprise to attend Rodney’s funeral. As if that would heal my heart. Ignore it, and the pain goes away. Poof!
So I was just drifting off when at 1:30 a.m. my beautiful, bossy Fluffy Jane started retching in the living room. I don’t know if it’s a Kitty Mama Sixth Sense or what, but every time one of my fur-kids gets sick I know it. So I popped out of bed, grabbed a flashlight and found her leaning over a small pool of bile and blood.
We knew she hadn’t been feeling well. About a month ago we bought the wrong cat food. Ridiculous that we can barely remember what cat food to buy; and even more ridiculous is that we don’t even write down the name. So no excuses. Jane is a very picky cat. She turned her nose up to the food and wouldn’t partake. She would get a bit hungry, have a bite or two, but for the most part, her bowl remained full until Jack or Lizzie finished it off for her. A couple of weeks ago we realized that she was loosing weight. She’s a big cat; part Maine Coon, part God-Knows-What-All. She used to be a hefty 16lbs. We figured it was the food. We were about to run out and when we brought the new stuff home she’d eat and get back to herself.
Until this morning.
You can only lie to yourself, to each other, for so long before you have to face the music. I cleaned up the vomit, washed my hands and climbed back into bed where we discussed what we would do the next morning – Cat to the Vet or Hop in the Car Bound for Enterprise. We decided that I could sleep in the car on the drive up; therefore allowing me to take Jane to the vet in the morning.
At 7:30 we opened the doors to the clinic. At 8:15 the vet took a look at her (the tech, Mary, had already been in to take some blood, temperature, etc.) and get caught up.
By 8:30 we all determined that Jane was very, very sick indeed. By 9 some of her blood panels came back and confirmed the depth of her crisis.
Isn’t that a strange thing? My cat is in crisis. Her health is in crisis. By 9:30 all panels were back and the news was not good. Jane has pancreatitis, among other things stemming from the pancreatitis. The goal was to hydrate her, get her on a tiny morphine drip to take care of the pain she was in, and see if in a couple of hours she would eat a bit of wet food and water.
At 10 a.m. the vet comes back in and says he was pretty certain she just might also have Addison’s Disease. It’s extremely rare in cats. It’s more often seen in dogs and humans. So they were going to do another test before the antibiotics and to see if that was the case.
At 10:30 I rolled out the door, reassured that I would be called with updates on her condition.
At 10:45 I parked in Holy Faith Catholic Church parking lot and meditated, prayed, lit a candle, prayed some more, meditated some more. Because not everyone understands that my cats and my dog are my children. That I would have gone to Rodney’s funeral if Jane wasn’t sick or needed to be hospitalized. That saying good-bye to Rodney with his sister and his friends was something I truly wanted to do. But…
It just wasn’t going to happen. Not today. My cat, my baby girl, my Fluffy Jane is sick. She is hospitalized. She’s connected to IVs and being force-fed and drugged up; and if tomorrow her panels are not improving we have to say good-bye to not prolong her pain. Or ours. I believe that is something that Rodney would have understood. He was cool that way.
One of my prayers today was asking God to show me how I could honor Rodney. My ears, my heart, my mind is open. Friendship was so very important to Rodney. Dedication, loyalty, unconditional love. I don’t know if I can excel at these things like he did but I’ll take it a minute at a time if I have to if it is meant to be. Maybe just finishing my degree – something else Rodney would have liked to have done – will do it. Overcoming my insecurities about my talent. Losing weight and getting healthy. Just going for a good walk every morning. Who knows? But I want to try. For him, for our friendship, and the grace of forgiveness.