Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Altered by a Deep Breath

And, of course, you mustn't wiggle or breathe while you are trying to capture such important life metaphors!

Early Morning Metaphor

Early this morning, I wandered to the top of our hill in hopes of viewing the total eclipse of the moon. It was the quietest time I have had in quite a while, and I was overwhelmed with the beauty of my home (our planet) at night.

I watched in wonder while the shadow of our planet blocked out an entire full moon for nearly an hour. My camera fought hard to gather in every bit of light otherwise available in order for it to capture this phenomenon, and I was surprised at the digital results. While the pictures do not replicate the experience of the eclipse, they do lend a new insight to what is out there EVERY night that we just never see.

Somehow, this has to be a metaphor for the way we live our everyday lives -- not noticing the ordinary until something spectacular captures our attention long enough that we actually notice the ordinary beauty that has been there all along.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Untitled #1

If this picture on the left is worth a thousand words...

then this fishhook in the picture which was stuck in the rectum of Sassy, the Occasional Cat, is worth $320.92 to the veterinarian who was able to remove it...

and having this hook put safely away in a zip-loc bag is worth a whole new life to a cat.
She WILL have to endure the unbelievable story for a little while longer, however... A mouse is laughing somewhere!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Groans, Grimaces, and Glutes Tightened

The Occasional Cat arrives at our back step unheralded and ready for snacks. He is a white fellow with some black and subtly striped blotches, and he talks as you stroke his head. You immediately notice his large front feet which sport six toes each, so we have just always called him Six. We know that he was abondoned by a troubled neighbor who moved away hurriedly. He has been fed by another neighbor but has mostly been on his own for the eight years that we can remember him coming around.
A few nights ago, the Occasional Cat arrived at the back porch and came in for a snack. He was so thin, but we attributed it to Summer Weight Loss -- common in cats in our past. We fed him and I picked him up to pet him. I felt something scratchy on his backside but attributed it to a sand bur or a cheat and didn't look to see what it was.
Two nights later, Six arrived again looking for loving and snacks. When I picked him up, I got scratched again; and he got testy with me and growled. So I decided that the bur had to be pulled out of his fur. Imagine my shock when I lifted his tail and found the eye and snelled line wrap of a fishhook protruding from his rectum. Yes, a fishhook was lodged inside the backside of this little cat; and there was no way for me to remove it.
I showed the situation to Jerry who was equally as horrified. We couldn't stop looking, and we couldn't stop tensing up our own backsides in total sympathy.
We put in a call to our neighbor who has been caring for Six for all of these years, and he came over and got the cat. He had the same reaction when he saw the hook -- grimace, subtle tightening of the gluteus muscles, and a groan. He took Six and promised to call the vet the next morning.
The next day, our neighbor was home from work calling the cat. He had let him out, had stopped by the vet's office to get an appointment, and had come home to find the cat and take him in. But, of course, the cat was nowhere to be found.
Two nights later, Occasional Cat showed up again -- this time he was rather cranky and bit me as I held him. I called the neighbor who was packing to leave on vacation for a week. He gave me permission to take Six to the vet while he was gone.
The next morning, I was greeted by the same groans, grimaces, and glute tightening at the vet's office. As we had been, everyone there was puzzled by how in the world this cat had managed to get a fishhook lodged way inside his little bum. After all of the little jokes about Captain Hook, Cat Fishing, and Bottom Fishing, they scheduled him for surgery. The fishhook was successfully removed later that afternoon.
When I picked Six up this morning, I learned that HE was a SHE and that HER name had actually been Sassy. They gave me the fishhook which is as long and wide as my thumb. Sassy isn't so sassy at the moment, but the pain medication and the antibiotics are doing their job. The vet's assistant said that case was one for their books -- only to be outdone by the dog who ate a pair of pantyhose which had to be surgically removed. I couldn't even go there.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Place Cats and People Cats

If you have ever had a cat, you know that there are Place Cats and People Cats -- those who base everything on WHERE they live and those who are fulfilled WITH WHOM they live.

Our Skylar is most definitely a Place Cat. The people in his life ALL love him, he meets new people easily and willingly, he visits with absolutely everyone he sees or comes into any contact with -- people are important and abundant. But he has never changed environments easily. He is a Place Cat, and he seems to be seeking a Place to call his own.

Refilling My Heart

In the midst of some difficult turmoil between John, Pam and Skylar, we kept Skylar on Monday and Tuesday. This little visit couldn't have come at a better time for my heart. There is something so incredibly special about being really needed again, and I felt really needed.

Little Guy has a couple of "meltdowns" and told me he was ready to go home to Spokane. I think he will be ready and willing on Thursday when John takes him home.

This is so hard, but I am glad I could help.

An Uphill Push

It is so surprising where those little nudges in our lives come from. I found a little nudge that pushed me up out of the emotional hole I kept falling into, and it came in the form of a visit from a little four-year-old that I was missing so badly. The fact that he was so very needy brought me back to that place where I seem to function best -- helper.

And then there was that little nudge from my friend "b" who put me in touch with myself and offered the idea of this blog.

I am so grateful.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Saved by a Four-Year-Old

I guess you never know what will save you from the depths of the blues. I got a call last night about keeping SkyGuy for a couple of days, and I leave to pick him up in 15 minutes. I am so elated that I can hardly stand it.

I haven't had a day with him all by himself since May! Maybe some of the achiness will go away after I get my SkyGuy fix.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Sometimes the Nest is Too Empty

Some mornings, I awaken to this quiet house and feel completely satisfied and at peace. Some mornings, I awaken and wonder what happened to my life as mom, teacher, and grandmother. I seem to go through these periods of sadness and blues, and it troubles me that I keep searching for more and more meaning. I guess I DID enjoy the chaos and the busy life more than I realized. Since I have become determined to give my grown daughter the room she needs to become completely independent of me, a piece of me feels like I have given her an incredible gift. The other piece of me feels like I am abandoning her -- something I swore I would never let her feel again as long as she lived. Just exactly where is the line, I wonder on a daily basis.