Saturday, June 14, 2008

An Aging Kitty

When I got home Friday night, I finally, vividly realized something that's been happening every morning when I get up and every evening when I come home from work.

Many of you have been reading here for a long time. So you'll remember the day I came home and found my cat Scotty going into a diabetic coma. (I had no idea he was diabetic.) He survived, to the delight and astonishment of my vet. Since then he's been up and down.

Recently, it seems it's mostly down. I continue to administer insulin every morning and evening, but in the past month my glucose tests suggest the insulin is doing almost nothing to control his glucose levels.

I've moved my laptop now so that I can blog and Web-surf from the sofa, with Scotty nestled up against my side.

Usually, when I get up in the morning or come into the house after work, I will find Scotty standing on the bathroom vanity, waiting for a drink of "living water." He has trained me that my first job every morning and evening is to turn the bathroom faucet onto a trickle, so that he can drink this fresh water. (I think he learned this from Shug, as he never did it before her death.)

I am growing more and more worried about Scotty's glucose levels. If he's staying in the 400s, I expect bad stuff is happening to his organs. But the vet is at the end of her ropes, with no more ideas about the root cause. Of course, being 17 years old may be the root cause for Scotty.

When I came home Friday, Scotty did not meet me at the door. Nor was he on the vanity, waiting for his living water. I put down my things, poured myself a drink, and then began looking for him, room by room. Fearing the worst.

Thanks be to God, I finally found him under the bed. We'd had thunderstorms in the morning, and Scotty is terrified by them. So I guess he "went for cover."

I don't know what it was Friday evening. Something just told me that it might be the day when he died. This brought me face-to-face with the fact that, one of these evenings or mornings, he's probably not going to come to me. I'm probably going to find him somewhere, having slipped quietly away.

To some of you, this will probably sound like a hideous segue. But I'm pretty sure that my concern for Scotty and my heightened sensitivity to mortality is related to Caminante's news that Naomi died Thursday. When I read that news, I was more grief-stricken than I expected. I cried and cried with the sadness of a life ended too soon.

I hate death. I hate it with a never-ending hate.
"Rage, rage against the dying of the light."
And so I do.


Blogger FranIAm said...

Oh Lisa -so many prayers for Scotty and for you.

Death is so hard, so hard.

Your love and care for your animals is such a beautiful gift, blessings to you in abundance.

6/14/2008 6:50 PM  
Blogger Ann said...

Sadness - loss of our loved ones is so hard. Prayers

6/14/2008 8:49 PM  
Blogger Jeffri Harre said...

Hugs for Scotty and you, Lisa. And prayers.

6/14/2008 9:41 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Thank you, my friends. I am truly grateful.

I never had children. But I do understand the deep wish to be able to "kiss it and make it better." My powerless to "fix it" for Scotty is hard to endure.

But I know people all over the globe suffer this same impotence.

6/14/2008 10:32 PM  
Blogger Grandmère Mimi said...

Lisa, I am so sorry. You and dear Scotty will be in my prayers.

6/14/2008 10:46 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Thanks, Mimi, and we all know -- 'cause we read the Bible in the language that Jesus spoke (i.e., the KJV) -- that "the prayers of a voodoo sorceress availeth much."

I love you, Voodoo Woman!

6/14/2008 11:03 PM  
Blogger David G. said...

I think I'd put my Kitty down,....since I have 14 cats, I couldn't handle a HIGH MAINTENANCE cat,'s hard enough handling them as it is.

But I have the few I cherish, and they know it and exploit it!!!!

Bad Kitties!!

6/15/2008 2:57 AM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

No way, David -- not as long as he still has a good quality of life. And he does. If I sensed he was suffering, then I'd be facing a different decision.

6/15/2008 8:32 AM  
Blogger FranIAm said...

Came by to wish you and Scotty good healing thoughts and love.

6/15/2008 9:11 PM  
Blogger Caminante said...

Finally getting over here to read about dear Scotty. He's important, too! Love him and let him love you... as Naomi's sister, Alicia, wrote in her baccalaureate speech she gave just last Sunday, a love poem to her older sister, 'I learned about how time, how precious it really is and how little we have, but every moment should be cherished and used to its fullest because who knows how long it will last, and before you know it — poof — your moment’s gone.’

6/15/2008 10:16 PM  
Blogger Elizabeth Kaeton said...

Oh, Lisa. Prayers ascend for you and Scotty.

6/16/2008 7:38 AM  
Anonymous eileen said...

Scotty looks just like my old guy Yoda...whom I miss so very much.

We all know at some point we'll face those moments, where death seems to stare at us more directly - until then, love Scotty as you do.

(((((Lisa & Scotty)))))

6/16/2008 7:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lisa, I add my prayers for you and for Scotty. We also have a diabetic cat. Marilyn

6/16/2008 12:58 PM  
Blogger Kirstin said...


I know where you are.

6/16/2008 8:45 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Many, many thanks, you all. I had to work late tonight (between work and other commitments) and I'm exhausted now, so I can't talk much. But I really appreciate the support, and the encouragement from you who have been through similar things. Y'all are the best!

Marilyn, if you have any good online resources to recommend about caring for a diabetic cat, I would appreciate your sharing them. Scotty became non-responsive to Humulin and is now on Vetsulin (4 units per dose, twice a day). I've also changed his diet (at the vet's recommendation), so he's now on kitten food (Hill's canned and Eukanuba dry). If you have other tips, I'd be happy to study them.

6/16/2008 10:06 PM  
Anonymous Lindy said...

May angels and the spirit of Saint Francis guide you as you do the important work of caring for this little creature.

You are an inspiration!

7/01/2008 6:31 PM  

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