A Small Cat and I Say N-E-V-E-R
Fatima, 2 days after her accident, deciding that food is a good thing.
I honestly don’t believe anyone, anywhere, anytime has ever been as happy to see March as I am. I’m always thrilled to see spring and, given the fact that I live, breath, and sleep St. Louis Cardinal’s baseball, moving closer to baseball is always a glorious thing. However, this year I welcome March into my life the way I welcome coffee into my cup each morning.
I’m not just glad to see the new month, I’m tickled pink to see the old one pack up it’s bags. February didn’t have a very pleasant personality as far as I’m concerned.
First of all, I have to apologize to the super cool people who leave comments for not responding to you sooner. The past few weeks haven’t just been ugly, they’ve been horrifically ugly. In fact all of February has been like a schoolyard bully. My washing machine broke, followed by a leaky, broken hot water heater. My white carpet loved that.
Personal injuries for this accident prone klutz included a hurt neck, a burned leg, and a knee I smashed into a concrete corner. Not all in the same day, though that would have been a personal best.
February wasn’t through yet, though. As you know, I work from home as a web publisher. My family owns a great number of websites, which include a few for the company my husband works for. We also host quite a few other business sites on our server. We normally never experience any problems, but apparently we outgrew our server and had to move to a new, bigger server. All of our websites were down for nearly a week. I was beside myself, not so much for my own sites (although I missed updating them greatly) but I hated for the business sites to be down that long.
Everything was out of my hands, though, so all I could do was ride it out. And keep checking… and checking… and checking.
Being the month that it was, even when everything was moved to the new server and everything was smooth, February had a new trick up its sleeve: Our internet provider ran into trouble. No internet at all for one day and slow progress for about a week. No problem, all I needed to do was catch up for an entire week off, that’s all.
However, as bad and annoying as all of that was, the worst involved one of my beloved outside cats, Fatima. I was outside one afternoon (the websites were still down and I was trying to find my sanity – I thought maybe I’d left it outside). As I was petting another cat (Hannah), I saw poor tiny Fatima coming slowly up the driveway, pulling one of her back legs behind her. She was staring me straight in the eyes, meowing loudly as she came to me – as though she thought I could do something to help her pain.
All I could do was pet her, cry, and curse February.
She had, somehow, broken her little hip. She’s a very, very small cat, so this wouldn’t have taken much. Personally I believe something fell on her. We live way out, where there are no cars for her to come into contact with, and it’s hard to imagine a cat falling and NOT landing on her feet. My little girl was in quite a bit of pain and discomfort and it killed me more than I can say. I did a little research and found that moving a cat with a broken hip or back requires a lot of caution. She was a feral kitten, so she’s not the sort of cat that we could possibly transport to the vet. In fact, I’m the only person she’ll even allow to pet her.
All of the experts I sought out said that if the cat was able to eat and drink and “do her business“, they’d have a chance at survival. I couldn’t get her to eat or drink at all that first day. She just laid beside me while I rubbed her head. And cried. And prayed. And prayed. And prayed.
To see any animal in pain is more than I can take – but when it’s one I love, it’s indescribable. I admit that the thought of having her “put out of her misery” ran through my mind. I knew that putting her into a carrier and transporting her to a vet would be excruciatingly painful and scary for her. I, somehow, just knew that if she were going to die, she’d rather do it at home. With each prayer for healing, I added a request to “just end her pain.”
Each time I went outside to find her (usually in the garage), I half-expected to find her dead. Instead, each time I found her alive, awake, and looking at me, waiting for the love she knew was headed her way. We had a really warm, pretty day and four days after the accident happened, she sort of drug herself into the sun and stayed there all day. I was relieved to see that she was able to “do her business.”
A storm blew through the other day and the weatherman said there was a tornado in the area. Given the month we’d been having, I thought, “We’re all going to die.”
Obviously we did not.
Never give up, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn. – Harriet Beecher Stowe
Two days after the accident, Fatima regained her crazy mad love for food. She could barely even stand long enough to eat. I put her favorite food on the ground, as opposed to on a plate, civil like. She’d stand for a few bites, then lie down a while. Then repeat the entire process. I was just glad to see my normally food-crazed cat enjoying her favorite sport again.
Five days after Fatima first came up the driveway, broken and helpless, she SOMEHOW managed to walk toward me when I went outside to see her that morning. I nearly fell over, but there she came, staring me dead in the eye and clumsily walking. Most people would say it wasn’t a very attractive walk but I”ll have you know it was the most beautiful walk I’ve seen since each of my daughters first walked. Truth be told, it was about as shaky.
I sat down next to her and begged her to stop moving – she consented and we sat there enjoying the moment. She purred for the first time since “it” happened, whatever it was.
She continues to blow my mind with how fast she’s healing. Each time I see her, I think, “There’s my miracle baby.” If you could have seen her coming up the driveway, you’d understand.
The moral… or at least the point… of this story is this: Never give up. Don’t give up on yourself, don’t give up on God, don’t give up on others, and never, ever, ever give up on happy endings.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, there’s LITERALLY a little gray head at my back door requesting dinner. So, she’s climbing steps now….
You just can’t beat the person who never gives up. – Babe Ruth