Saturday, April 9, 2011

My World - It Sucks

Wow, I hadn’t realized that I haven’t blogged since the end of January.  Life has been getting me down even more than usual lately.  The visits to the hospital for wound care slowed down to once a week.  I had about 11 derma grafts, to stimulate skin growth on the wound.  Then, surprise!  I got another infection and was back on antibiotics and the derma grafts stopped.  Once the antibiotics were done, we’ve been in slow motion, allowing the skin to grow at its own pace.  This fun stuff has been going on since August……………nearly 8 months.  At least now, I can get into the shower instead of giving myself sponge baths at the sink.  Showers are a wonderful thing!

On the critter front, life hasn’t been any kinder.  I found Chase dead about a week before Christmas.  I haven’t blogged about it because it simply hurt too much to think about it.  Several years ago I nearly lost her due to plasma cell stomatitis.  After vet bills of nearly $2000, which put me deeply into credit card debt, she pulled through.  She remained terribly thin, but a real pistol.  She had been a feisty girl since she was a tiny kitten.  She got her name because she would make me Chase her every night when I tried to corral her and keep her in the bedroom.  I started loving on her for an extended period of time once I caught her in hopes of conditioning her to come more willingly to me.  Ever since that time she would so love to be held and petted.  I told people she was the cream cheese and I was the bagel – she would smear her entire body over my arms and chest, ecstatic with the petting/rubbing/loving.  She also liked to eat with her paws, scooping food from the bowls and plates and eating what she had “caught” off her paw.  Sloppy, messy eater but darling, none the less.

When I returned home from the hospital last September, both Chaz and Charlie (littermates) were sickly.  Charlie is still hanging in, with numerous ups and downs in his weight.  The vet can’t tell me exactly what’s wrong with him.  We go through periods where I have to give him sub-cu fluids frequently and he’ll only eat baby food.  Chaz developed an inoperable tumor in his left ear.  It had a major growth spurt in February and I finally euthanized him.  He was such a mellow, sweet and unassuming cat.  He was just a well mannered gentleman cat.  Then Colin and Claudia both got sick around the same time.  Colin succumbed to kidney disease and I euthanized him in March.  Claudia has hyperthyroidism and is on daily medication.  My friend Barb treks across the street twice a day to hold her so that I can pill her.  She managed to bite me last Monday and I ended up at my doctor’s office and on antibiotics.  Thumb is healing nicely.

 Sorry, no picture of Charlie or Claudia.  This was Colin in much better days, several years ago.

Last Friday, Barb called to say that Caleb, my eldest dog, wasn’t able to stand.  Although he’s had bouts of spinal problems for the past several years, this was something different.  She feared that he had a stroke.  I came home from work and we took him to the vet.  Even with injections of steroids, muscle relaxants and pain meds, he remained throughout the night in bad shape.  Around 4:30 Saturday morning he tried to stand unsuccessfully and was obviously in pain.  I gave him a pain shot, which didn’t help much.  Barb went with me to the vet when the office opened on Saturday.  The vet felt that he had most likely had a stroke and I chose to euthanize him since it was highly unlikely that he would recover from this.  I had written about him earlier this year and his recovery from his previous spinal problem.  I think he was about 15 or 16 years old, which is remarkable based on his early life and his size.  It’s unusual for medium sized dogs (shepherd mix) to live quite that long.  He was a sweet old boy and is sorely missed.  

With all of this going on, I haven’t been able to muster my regular outrage over the political climate.  Suffice it to say that what is going on in our nation’s capital, Wisconsin, my dear Florida, my birth state of Ohio, Japan and the Middle East qualifies as CRAZY.  The only bright spot on the political front?  JON STEWART!  He never fails to make me laugh at the lunacy.  If you don’t get Comedy Central, check out the videos on their website.  His recent imitation of Glenn Beck had me in stitches.  At least I’m still able to laugh…………………………………occasionally.


  1. What tragedy! I am terribly sad and sorry that you are going through that...but you are still finding humor through it all.....did you keep the little black and white one from last year?

  2. Both B&W went to homes. The little girl to someone living in the trailer park and the other, Franco, to dear Eli who works for me. Apparently, Franco is Mr. Personality and living a very, very happy life with Eli, her sister and his new best bud, Root, Eli's other cat.

    The next few years will continue to be tough. I acquired most of the herd within a 3 - 4 year period. Not looking forward to the mass die off.

  3. Connie, I am so, so sorry to hear of your losses, expecially Caleb. He was my little buddy, even for the short time I got to know him and I know Pat will be upset too. He really took to all of your dogs but Caleb was just very special! And I remember Chase from my first visit to your house. What a pretty kitty! This is Amy Q. I couldn't figure out how to post any other way.

  4. I'm sorry about all your fur kids, Connie :( We went through this a few years back with a herd of kitties we rescued from 97 to 2000 and they were all around the same age. It's hard. We enjoy your blog posts :)

  5. Who have you still got? Claudia and Charlie? I was in that kind of overwhelming place about 5 years ago with 4 cats all with health issues. We are down to just one now. The bank account is beginning to heal from the damages, but I am not sure I will ever recover completely from the effects of the stress. You are going through much worse and are stronger than I am. When our last cat goes, I have vowed no pets on a "forever" basis. Just charity donations and volunteering. I can only handle so much and that's it. Hang in there and heal.

  6. The list is still a long one. Claudia & Charlie, as well as Cissy, are hanging in. It's tough enough dealing with 1 ill animal, but dealing with multiple ones - pills, injections, special food - wears me down. Then there's the emotional weight of the circumstances.

    At my age, I don't plan to add to the herd. I can't imagine living without critters so, should I outlive my furry friends, I'll probably opt to foster instead.

  7. I wish you could come visit, Connie. You need a break from all this suffering, for you, and deaths amongst your family. I know how hard all that is. I so much wish better days for you. You've had it too tough lately. You deserve wonderful things.

  8. Thanks for your kind words and understanding. You, much more than I, deserve so much better than you have, and continue to, receive.