Sunday, April 20, 2014

Loving animals.....not every one's cup of tea.

I grew up in the 1930's and 1940's , we lived by a canal and I would have to add in Belgium.
Times were difficult and there was a lot of poverty.
We had several cats and one dog.
All outdoors. They were not pets to my parents they were working animals.
The Canal gave life to hundreds of water rats. They were the size of the cats and extremely vicious.
We had the cats to hunt them down.
My mother would feed them kitchen scraps and milk. She did not get attached to them.
If they had babies she would drown them as soon as they were born.
I remember being hysterical when I saw this.
Life was hard, 3 cats was enough to feed.

This was not a time when cat food came in bags or cans.
This was not a time that we thought of having them fixed. I do not remember ever hearing about a vet.
I think they had that on big farms for cows and horses.
Eutenasia was more used for whatever hailed the animals.

My father, a policeman, was watching the docks for smuggling at one time and found a Russian ship with aa sailor trying to sneak past him. Apprehended by my father he showed what he was going to sell in town: a young all white Russian Husky. My father quickly told him it was against the law and the sailor quickly gave the dog to the policeman. That was my first dog. We named him Jacquis. I adored that dog and he was the best hunter anyone had ever seen. He would throw the rats up in the air and catch them only to continue the game till the rat was dead and then bring it to the kitchen door for admiration of my mother.
He was a prince of a pet for me , the cats too I loved but they were not always friendly.
When war broke out the cats became wild. We hardly saw them. They were frighten by the noises of sirens and planes. One stuck by us and she learned quickly how to climb over the ladders to get to the shelter from the factory. My father said that she could hear the planes leaving England.

My Jacquis eventually lost his life when a truck killed him. We hardly had traffic on the cobblestone road which separated my house from the canal but somehow someone got him. I looked and called him for days until my mother had to tell me     and I went into a melt down.

This was my childhood with animals. When my father left us my mother did not want any animals around anymore, she said we just did not have the food for animals and that I am sure was for real.
She never did get to love the four footed variety. She said they mess up, they have hair everywhere, they were a lot of work. I now think that in her last decades when she was so lonely she would have had so much pleasure in her life. My Bijou is the biggest part of my life now.He follows me everywhere, he sleeps with me. He watches me. Bob's dog, the corgie is with me when he is gone, she too will follow me.
I walk around like an old lady just talking to them about the food I am preparing about the TV show and if I swear rather loudly the two have their ears perked and bark. They know I am not happy at that moment.

When Carwen became sick the other day, I just lost it, I cried buckets sitting by her and stroking her. I was sure she was dying , I thought that life was being very difficult right now. I have two very good friends fighting for their life and I am not handling that very well and the thought of Carwen going too was just too much to bear. I actually did not function, did not cook, did not clean, did not know what I was doing in one room and why I had turned the TV on the wrestling channel. I hate wrestling.

My Mom used to say when we lost a dog :"It is only a dog, it is not like it is a human you lost"
I could have smacked her when she said that because for me my dogs and cats have been better friends , always forgiving me if I stepped on them, always come running at me no matter how long I had been gone. Always a welcome. Always unconditional love. How often do we find that in humans?

Carwen ate something she should not have out there in the bushes, no doubt. The vet has great hopes for her recovery. She is my friend.

PS. When my father turned about 70 he suddenly adopted all the stray cats in his environment.
I visited him and he had purchased the best cat food and was feeding about 6 cats.
The old man had softened.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Our pets always wait till the week end to be sick...

Bob's sweet Corgie became sick yesterday morning, the day before she had been playing with Bijou and racing to see who could get the ball that glows.
Now it is Good Friday and not so good looking Carwen lays down on the kitchen floor and looks like she is not going to move. Her eyes closed and I pet her over and over gain and she continues to sleep.
Bob is at work when she decides to get up and walk a bit and tries to throw up and it does not work.
Then she wets and poops all over the place and she knows better, she never has accidents. She looks at me with very sad eyes, she is tellling me she is sorry. She then goes by the door and we walk outside and she tries again to throw up but instead she just lies down again and closes her eyes.
By then I am hysterical. Bob cant leave work the boss is out to buy supplies.
Brie does not have her car, Zack has it and on his way to get girldfriend.
She gets a hold of him and he U turns back to his Meme.
I am friggin cold and then notice I did not put on a jacket and I do not want to leave her either.
I am sure that she is dying.
Once at the vet the lovely Vet tells me that she is dehydrated by now and possibly ate something that made her sick. She asks if we feed the dogs at the table....I have to admit but I am cautious.
No onions, no this no that. Mostly I give them my chicken.
Bijou is OK so there is a nothing in the house I can think off.
Carwen takes hours on her walks. She sniffs everything. She goes into the ivy and smells forever.
Who knows what she found? Bijou is not like that, he runs for his walks, he pees every other second then squats and runs some more. He wants to chase dogs, any dog. He and a little  chiwawa
had a fight with a fence between them they  did lock but no damage before I could separate them.
Bijou like my previous Maltese would attack a pit bull, my poor Toto then died in front of me.
I have to watch Bijou with every step we take.
Later the vet called and said she had a urinary infection. They are treating her and keeping an eye on her.Into the night.
This morning the vet called and said he wants to keep an eye on her till perhaps later today.
So then I remembered that when she had stones in the kidney it was also a week end with surgery.
You know a Vet with 24/7 hours does have changes in fees accordingly. This being Easter week end
we are lucky at least she started it on a Friday.
However , there is not a question in Bob or my mind that whatever the cost we want this girl home.
When you have pets you have an obligation to keep them healthy, it is a small price to pay for the love they give us every day.
So even so I am hoping she does not have to stay into Easter I just want her home healthy that is the bottom line.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Return from a different place

For 5 weeks now I have been a different person, same shape, same hairdo, same everything but a total remake of the brain. Antibiotics for infection  said the doctor. I did not even hurt.
That in itself is a bit scary as I had a kidney full of cancer and that never hurt either.

Immediately I started to be extra tired, no energy, just eat and sleep.
The couch kept my inprint (?) for days, did not even bounce back.
My Maltese did not budge, he sat on top of my hip and stayed there for days.
Then the mind started to play tricks.
I figured daughter Sabrina was extremely angry with me. I did not know why so in
the middle of the night I emailed her.
One night I just wrote for hours to my friend in Chicago, I can't remember why I wrote
or what I wrote.
Sunday Rhonda came so we could go to Lowes to buy some mulch for the yard.
I seemed to be better I was less tired.
She went into one section and I went towards the garden section when I made a U turn
and went to look to buy a dryer. I was suddenly in a euphoric state of mind , not only did I want a dryer but the best one in display , a shiny gorgeous piece of glitter amid calm quiet white ones, this was over 1000.00 bucks. They also offered discounts with a Lowe started to look better and better.
Lucky no sales person approached me. A very slight glimmer entered the brain and said:
"Jeannot go get the mulch, no dryer today!"
Bewildered I agreed and went to the garden. Saw Rhonda and said :
DO NOT let me buy anything today but mulch.
She did but then she also told the helper :"She is like a kid I have to watch her or she will buy the store out!.

Yesterday, Monday I took my usual nap, I was not overly tired and as the day progressed
my head became clearer and clearer.
I knew I was on my way back.
Back from what?
From many decisions I was wrong about. I had been very depressed and even suicidal.
Not my usual style.
I was convinced that all my friends had left me. I have no idea why I thought that.

Sabrina called the pharmacist and she had the name of the medication, the antibiotics, the pharmacist said that some people react that way , I should have called him and my doctor. He put a red flag on my file to never get this medication again. He also told Brie that it is quite common for the elderly to respond that way.

I sit here and it feels like I missed weeks, I am not sure about my behavior at all.
If I offended my friends please note "I was under the influence and it was not the green leaf type"
Probably would have been much happier if it had been.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Hospital visits

Brie and I went to Mission for 2 people in need of help.
My friend suddenly struck with cancer which can't be cured.
I never saw him sick. You just figured he would be the one to make 100.
He ate right, he walked miles and miles all over this country and on dozens of trips in
England and Italy.
He is married to his best friend. I can't remember how many years ago.
Bob and I met him in Spain in 1971.
We are part the reason we are in North Carolina.
We visited Belgium together many times.
My mother adored them.
His wife is in total shock , my heart is breaking for her too.
Both of them stood by me during Bob's illness.
He visited his doctor (which is also mine) on Monday and immediately he was
put in the hospital. It took to Thursday before they found out what the problem was.
It was a week of waiting , I do not know what is worse waiting or knowing.
He is my brother I never had and the stuffing is coming out of me.
Worse is that we know he is in pain but the morphine, I hope can take most of it away.

From his bed Brie went into the heart building to visit her friend who at 51 suddenly had a heart attack at work on Thursday. Brie told me that they just returned her from surgery when she entered her room.
She had a blockage and they put in a (stent?), Brie said she was in full make up and in good cheer after coming out of the surgery just a little while ago.
So that will be a very good ending. She goes home on Monday. She is the cutest little lady bug!
She will be teased to be in bed with her make up on.
Sabrina was happy that she had seen her.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Take this medicine and feel horrible.....

Going to my favorite doctor , my urologist, just for last check up after the 3 years and kidney removed.
The staff finds an infection, I am not hurting, I am arguing. They took the wrong cup I say.
I get prescription called in.

Costly one not my usual one.

Taking the pill I do not feel different since I have no pain but I am getting exhausted, I get up walk my dog , eat my breakfast and crawl on the couch sleeping till lunchtime. Do the same routine all over again.
After about 3 days of this I am thinking on giving up. I am having very dark thoughts.
I am so depressed I truly do not want to talk to people.
Finally I am figuring out that if I take all my pills at once I will no longer have to worry about anything.
I have a glimmer of "Do not be stupid" . I talk to my son and daughter, they convince me it is the medicine and it will all pass.
The day after my last pill is taken , the girls and I go to Biltmore for lunch , we took a vote, they won, I would have preferred going to BK. I was afraid I would fall asleep at the table.
I bought an orchid in the flower shop hoping it would change my mood. It did not.
I just became angry that I spent the money on a flower again.
I love being with the girls now that there is peace between us all.

Next day back to the routine of sleeping.
Much work to be done around me and I try to ignore.
I feel like I am 95 at least and will sit in a chair in a corner in a nursing home.
The future looks like hell.

Back at the doctor for check up , all is clear, infection is gone.
I ask the doctor why I have no energy and was suicidal and he immediately tells me that different people are affected by the antibiotic. Some do not sleep at all, nausea also common and depression very common in the elderly. He tells me that 10 days after the last pill I will get back to normal.

So I am writing this looking longingly at my couch. 7 or so more days to be "normal".