Notes from the past…

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Advent Calendar 5 Dec 2009: Outside Decorations

I don’t really remember my grandparents’ house having Christmas lights. What I do remember is Christmas Eve when all the family gathered at their house. After dinner, after it had gotten good and dark outside, my Granddad and my uncles Troy and Jack would pile all us grandkids in the car and give us the grand tour of the neighborhood lights. By the way, the houses with blue lights are my favorites…

And what were my Nanny and Aunts Jan and Kathy up to while we were so conveniently out of the house?

Putting out each grandchild’s gifts in a certain part of Nanny’s big living room! We each had our own corners and when we returned from checking out the neighborhood lights, there were several stacks of carefully wrapped packages. My aunts would giggle and aim each of us to our areas, and the wrapping paper and bows would fly!

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A death in the family


As I write this, my daughters, granddaughter and her friend are preparing for a hard truth. The elder member of my household will soon be leaving us.

Leaky is my 14-year-old Calico and she is gravely ill. What started out as a minor upper respiratory ailment earlier in the week has progressed to severe respiratory distress. A trip to the vet on Tuesday for antibiotics produced only short-term relief and yesterday her condition worsened. Back to the vet and this time she stayed for an IV and stronger antibiotics, in an attempt to break her 106.9 degree temp (101-102 is normal for cats) and worsening congestion.

I had to work last night, so I asked the vet to keep her, since she would be home alone otherwise. My kids went to visit her “in hospital” last night and called in frequent progress reports to me at work.

We were concerned about her being left alone at the vet’s all night, as no humans are in attendance overnight. I couldn’t bare the thought of her dying all alone in a strange place.26 Oct 2006 007

So my daughter brought her home last night and stayed with her until I got home at 1:30 am. She is so weak and no longer purring constantly, as was her norm, even as her condition worsened. She is markedly worse than earlier in the day when I had taken her back to the vet.

So I made her a bed on my bed, with a heating pad to try to keep her more comfortable. And I stayed awake at her side the rest of the night, petting, comforting, crying. Her restlessness has increased and respirations are becoming louder and more labored.

Just waiting for the vet now. Had I seen her last night while the vet was still in the office, her suffering would have ended last night…

…it’s over. I love you, Leaky!