May 10, 2008

Very Sorry, But Some Trouble Again

[SAD NEWS: I'm writing this early Monday morning. Fidele died last evening. The end was very peaceful, or at least appeared to be. She had been sleeping very quietly, as she had been all day, and then she was just...gone. Her body gave out completely. Fidele would have been 15 on July 4. I've only just begun to absorb the fact that she's no longer here. I can't get over how fast this was. Most of the day Friday, she was absolutely fine, or seemed so. She even ate a very good breakfast on Saturday. And now she's gone.

Only a week ago, on my birthday, the cats woke me up very early. Wendy was licking my right arm, and Fidele was licking my left arm. This was serious licking. Cyrano sat at the foot of the bed, watching the proceedings very intently. I thought he was smiling. "A wake-up bath for Dad on his birthday!" I have an active imagination. And now she's gone.

I'll call the pet crematory service when they open in a few hours. I last had to use them six years ago, so I think the cost of everything will now be about $200. Some of you have been very kind and generous. Obviously, there won't be any vet expenses for Fidele, but I do plan to take Wendy and Cyrano in for checkups. I've been remiss about that and now feel very guilty about it. Actually, I've always felt guilty about it, but now I feel especially guilty. If I had done it regularly (which I didn't primarily because I could never afford it), perhaps the vet would have caught something going on with Fidele. Well, not much point in dwelling on that excessively now. But if anyone wants a refund, please don't hesitate to let me know. Honestly, it's not insensitive or awful in any way at all. You made a donation thinking one thing was happening, and now it isn't happening any longer. It's fine, truly.

Fidele holds a special place in my heart and has a special connection to a person I loved very much. I'll explain all that when I'm not so distraught, perhaps in a week or two. Otherwise, I'll be back to blogging tomorrow or the next day.

Goodbye, sweet girl. You brought much happiness and joy into my life. Bless you always, and rest well.]

With that last essay, I'm beginning to get into the meat of those issues that most concern me right now. Yes, all the rest of this has been warming up. :>) And I am just beginning; there is lots more to come. I mentioned in the previous article that it is in part an introduction to certain themes in the tribalism series, and I hope to republish tomorrow one old essay in particular which will kick off that series. (I have to write some new material to place that article in the required context. That piece has been offline for a few years, due to moving the blog, corrupted archives, etc. I'm discovering some other relevant essays from several years ago that I may republish as well.)

A number of you have been very generous over the last few months. As always, I offer you my deepest thanks and gratitude. Some of you also sent me gifts for my birthday, for which many further thanks. I want to offer a special thank you to a reader (whose email address I don't have, or I would have used it long ago) who sent me a huge bunch of items from my Wishlist a few months back. Thank you, thank you, thank you! A lot of you are wonderfully kind.

Donations made it possible for me to pay this month's rent, as well as some current bills. I was also able to take Fidele, my oldest cat, to the vet a couple of times. She thankfully was much better for a while, but now very suddenly, she's much, much worse. The trouble started last evening, and it's continued today. I spoke to my vet, who had no openings today. She gave me the number of an emergency, 24-hour clinic, if I need to use it before Monday. If Fidele seems not too horribly badly off through Sunday, I'd prefer to go to my regular vet, where I have an appointment for 10 AM Monday morning. They're wonderful, and I feel very comfortable there.

But Fidele is in bad shape. I hope it's nothing worse than a sprained leg or pulled muscle, which is what some of the symptoms suggest. The vet also said it might be back trouble. But she's having other problems, too (but none seemingly related to what had been going on before). I'd describe it all, but I'd start blubbering, which wouldn't be terribly helpful to either Fidele or me at the moment. In any event, we'll be off to the vet in the next day or two. Given my own physical frailties, each trip of this kind becomes a fairly monumental affair. Oh, well.

Thanks to some donations that came in during the last week (more birthday gifts, I suspect, for which thanks again), I have several hundred dollars. That could vanish overnight, depending on what the vet finds. I'm also preparing myself for the fact that I may have to make the ultimate difficult decision in a few days, if the indicated treatment(s) are horrendously expensive and/or if it appears that Fidele will never be much better, and probably doesn't have any good times left. Damn. Crying now. Shit.

Anyway. It's more than likely that I'll be close to broke by the middle of next week, or even sooner. So although I hate to ask still another time for donations, because I have no other source of income at all, ask I must. If you have any spare change rattling around in any amount, no matter how small, I'd be extraordinarily grateful.

I don't think there's anything else to add. Maybe another shit or two. Shit. This business is truly awful. I've been through it with four cats of my own, and with ten cats or more belonging to close friends. It never gets any easier, not in even the most minuscule degree. It's always awful.

Once again, my enormous thanks for your time and consideration.