Sunday, April 20, 2008

Happy Birthday, Scotty

Today is Scotty's 17th birthday. If you've followed this blog, you know he's had a couple of near-death experiences. A month after Shug died, I took him to the vet, and discovered he's become diabetic … again … for the third time. The first two times, he converted ... miraculously. The vet and I hope he will convert again … but 6 weeks gone, I'm not so sure.

The first time he became diabetic, my right hand was totally paralyzed, so checking his glucose and giving him shots was pretty traumatic for both of us. The second time he became diabetic, I had a very shaking right hand, so it was pretty traumatic. This time, I have a diagnosis and medication that mostly controls my shaking hands. So we've settled into a routine: I stick his ear to get a glucose reading, then I administer insulin, then I give him a couple of pills the vet has prescribed, then ... yahoo! ... he gets Greenies treats. Generally, he's pretty mellow through all that. Sometimes he even purrs.

A friend visited a couple of weeks ago, who shared a great insight with me, which has converted my approach to this whole thing. Scotty came into my life while he was still a nursing kitten. We've had these 17 years together, when he has stuck with me through thick and then, through better and worse. … My friend reminded me of that Gospel passage that reads something like, "Having loved them … he loved them to the end." My friend reminded me what a great honor it is to love my cat even to the end.

Scotty and I have been through a lot together. We had many good years together in Atlanta. But then I went through a couple of years of chaos, where I was moving from pillar to post every few weeks or months. He adjusted to all those transitions and remained my faithful companion. No judgment. No lectures. He (and Shug) just hung in there with me.

Shug's gone now, but Scotty is still here.

And Susan helped me convert my understanding. Scotty may not "convert" this time. Maybe he'll remain a diabetic cat, and maybe we'll continue to do this twice-daily routine of glucose-testing and insulin shots. That's ok. We've been friends for a very long time now. He remained faithful even when my life was chaotic. Now my life is more settled. It really is an honor to care for him … even if it means watching him in the waning years.


Blogger Fran said...

Happy Birthday Scotty. Wow, what a beauty and what an age for a cat. A wise, old cat indeed.

My heart goes to you both, with many prayers for all that is.

I first came to your blog when you lost Shug and have been more or less lurking with the occaisonal comment here and there.

I send you and Scotty wishes for peace, healing and consolation.

4/20/2008 9:12 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

I know, Fran. I've seen you lurking, and have been grateful for your occasional comments.

Yes, Scotty is a beautiful and wise old cat. I don't deserve him ... and I am grateful for his companionship.

Thank you for your prayers and good wishes.

4/20/2008 9:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Murump, Scotty, this is Nan. So, you're three months older, mrumph! You look pretty good, but then so do I, if I say so myself. The doc here says I need feline K-D, now, along with Tina, but I snagged a little snibble of tilapia last night. Mom blocked access to the desk where her computer is, murrumph, so I sprawl on the back of the sofa and watch. That always gets your human, you know, mrrump.

4/21/2008 12:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a 17 year old. Gray girl. Gets thyroid and pain medicine each day. She's getting more crippled. She drags her back leg more and more. But she loves her lovin'(on her own terms) and she's still quite the little purr box. She can still find her way into her mommies' laps. Still. It is hard to watch her get older...



4/21/2008 2:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And happy birthday Scotty!!


4/21/2008 2:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Murump back to you, Nan. I remember when we were both kittens. My mom still treasures the photo your mom took, back when I was a youngster.

Lisa now has a laptop, so she mostly works from the sofa, so I can just snuggle against her. When need be, I can lay across the keyboard. We have our ways, eh?

Warm regards to you and Tina --

4/22/2008 1:13 AM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Thank you, Susan. Yeah ... they get even more precious as we see their limitations, don't you think? But wasn't it just yesterday that they entertained us with their kitten antics? {sigh}

4/22/2008 1:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, aside from a little inner ear issue and a "wide stance", I do pretty well for a twenty year old. My human waits on me, she politely makes room for me in the bed, and I have a patch of sun (sometimes - this is MO). I've done pretty well for a pound kitten.

Natasha, owner of NancyP

4/22/2008 8:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Natasha, I honor you.

Lisa would like to wait on me, but I really don't want a maidservant. Mostly, I just want to hide out under the bed; I've never been one for sleeping with people. That was Shug's job.


4/23/2008 12:07 AM  
Blogger Caminante said...

Give Mr Scotty a snorgle in that sweet stomach of his that is just waiting for me. Greenies are the best so I am glad he gets those as a reward.

4/23/2008 7:52 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a beautiful understanding. You and Scotty are blessed to have one another.

4/23/2008 1:00 PM  
Blogger sharecropper said...

Having a diagnosis and treatment for both you and Scotty is wonderful. Oops, here's Cliff for his comment: Purrrrr. I want to be like you, Scotty, when I get old. I'm middle aged right now, and I have asthma. My owners are good about adding greenie treats when I swallow my pill at night, but sometimes I hide just to make them humble.

5/03/2008 7:44 AM  

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