Wednesday, April 26, 2006 was a very hard day for me. Very. I woke up in the morning knowing it was bound to be an icky day, since I had a root canal scheduled. I had to get Colton to a friend's house so he could get him to speech and school for me (love you Kori!!) and had to get Calista to her developmental learning center, then go get my root canal, get Calista home and get Colton off the bus. What I didn't realize is how this day will be remembered by me for a long time, if not forever.
My cat, Mistletoe, had been a little "off" lately. Since Saturday, she just seemed down in the dumps. I figured it was because I was SO crabby lately with a lot of crap going on, and she was reacting to it. Then I noticed Monday she wasn't interested in eating, and Tuesday I noticed she was not drinking and not using the litterbox. On Tuesday morning I found her napping in the shower after Jeff had left for work, so she was all wet (she HATES being wet). So I petted her and figured I should call the vet - she was still walking around, running away from the kids, etc. So she still had energy... I thought she must have a blockage (hairball) or something. The rest of the day Tuesday I kept shoo-ing her away from the kitchen sink and bathroom sink, and the bathtubs. Very very weird for her. On Tuesday night I got up during the night since Calista was crying, and thought it odd that Miss (short for Mistletoe) was not in bed with me. I went looking for her and I found her in her water bowl. Not drinking, not by it, but in it (she is a tiny cat, and ia little over 6 1/2 pounds). So first thing yesterday morning I called the vet. I said that my cat was acting really goofy and I think she had a blockage of some sort. They recommended I bring her in the hospital emergency right away, otherwise I could bring her in later in the day. So, I said I would bring her in, called dear Kori and asked if she could take Colton early (at the crack of dawn) and took Calista and Miss to the vet.
At the vet, the asst said that she would take Missy back to take her temp and get her vitals and Cali and I waited in the wiaitng room. They then took us back to a room where the vet came in (missy was still in the back). He said that he felt, given that the cat was 11 and the signs, that best case would be she has diabetes which is totally treatable. I asked what the worst case scenario was, never ever ever thinking that the worst case scenario was really in the true sense of the term "THE worst case scenario", and he said worst case would be kidney failure. He said he would need to run some tests to make sure, and that I could stay here or come back. I had to get Cali to her school and had to get my root canal. So on the way to drop her off I called Jeff, told him what the vet said, and asked him to call the vet since I would be in my root canal when we were supposed to call.
I went to my root canal, and as I am sitting (laying) there with my mouth being held open with some hooks and a clamp thing, the endodontist goes, "well, the tooth they did a couple weeks ago only had one root, and this on has three... wait! you have a bonus! this one has 4 roots that we need to deal with! 4 root canals - ha ha!" Oh boy he was not pleasant - the endodontist I had last time was really nice. This one kept singing to the muzak (you've lost, that lovin' fee-e-lin') and asking me questions... "do you like Katie Couric? OR do you like Diane Sawyer better?" I CANNOT TALK WITH ALL THIS STUFF CLAMPING MY MOUTH OPEN!!! But that is another post...
Four root canals later, I call JEff. I say how is Miss, and he says "I will take care of it when I get home". I say "what does that mean? how is she? what are you saying you will take care of it? is it diabetes? what is it?" Thinking that there is no way it is that serious, and thinking he just didn't want to tell me we were going to have to give her insulin, or some meds, I didn't understand. "Mistletoe has severe kidney failure Jeanine. I am sorry." So I am screaming in my car "what does that mean? what do you mean? what? there must be a mistake - what does that mean? when can I pick her up?" thinking that she has 6 mos to a year to live, I would pick her up and cope with this. "No Jeanine, Mistletoe is dying. I asked the vet how much time, and he said a couple days if that. Her kidneys have stopped, and the rest of her is slowing down." I am not going to go into more detail since it is too hard. Just too hard right now.
I went to the vet last night to be with Miss one last time. One last time with my cat since New Year's Eve 1994, when she was small enough to sleep in a baseball cap. One last time with my cat who helped me through the most difficult times of my life: losing my dad to alcoholism, having my engagement being broken off by my ex 2 months before the wedding (after planning it for 12 months), moving to NJ from WI, having the kids and coping with their difficulties. One last time with my cat who has been my "crutch" since my mom was diagnosed this year. One last time with my cat who has helped me through post partum depression after Colton. One last time with my cat who has been the most stable, predictable thing for the past 11 years - the one who keeps me grounded. The one who keeps me going. The one who I always knew would be there when no one else would. One last time with my cat who was my good friend, my secuirty blanket... my cat.
Thank you, Mistletoe.