If we were having coffee, I might not be in the best mood. I would still welcome you into my home. And serve up your chosen beverage. Hot or iced?
You’d know from the bags under my eyes and the fact that I’m not serving fresh baked anything, that something is very wrong.
The news pours out of me, sometimes with a tear or two.
It all started about two weeks ago. My family was coming back at about 9 pm after hiking all day. My husband’s extremely old (17 years) cat ran out the front door as we were struggling (with water bottles, dusty boots and backpacks) to come in the front door. We have a space in the center of our circular drive packed with dogwoods, camellias and azaleas and he ran right into the thickest part of it. We suspected he just wanted to cool off after being stuck in a stuffy house and since we couldn’t see much, we decided to grab some flashlights before mounting a search party.
He was only outside for about ten minutes.
The next door neighbor screamed!
A car swerved into the gravel along side of the road by her house and stopped.
Our cat was lying in the road.
He survived the car accident, but with a broken scapula, broken ribs and some damage to his spine. Surgery to fix his spine (costing tens of thousands of dollars) might have killed him anyway. Instead, the vet ordered caged rest for 6 weeks. The hope is the spine will recover once the swelling goes down.
I don’t know if you have ever cared for an injured animal, but it is not easy. The first day he bit my husband, his favorite person in the world. Needless to say, I have been very careful to keep the kids out of his way when the pain is making him truly grumpy.
My days (and nights) are set by the schedule of cat nursing care. Giving him water with an eye dropper and feeding him food in tiny bites from a spoon as often as I can talk him into eating it. We also need to get up a few times a night to help him use a litter box. Or, if we didn’t move fast enough, to change his soaked bedding.
He also needs physical therapy several times a day. We need to move his limbs gently, and to help support him so he can sit up for a little while each day. We need to gently tap his tail and back legs so he will keep trying to move them and they don’t atrophy.
I’m happy to report he is doing much better. He’s moving his tail very well and his back legs are starting to support his weight. He sort of walks a few steps now, but it looks scary. He wobbles back and forth with his legs spread wide apart for balance. We have to bend over and hold our hands next to his body so he will not tumble over and hurt himself. When his strength runs out, we also need to lower him gently to the ground. He is not out of the woods yet; spines in cats are tricky and prone to re-injury, but we have hope.
The upside of all this home time is the kids and I have been spending a lot of time together. We are doing crafts, fun projects and playing board games.
Our first fun discovery was Google Camp. I can highly recommended this site for kids who enjoy learning about science topics. The videos and home DIY projects are amazing.
As a parent, I can’t say enough good things about cooperative board games. We love one called Castle Panic. We discovered this game on Wil Wheaton’s show Tabletop about two years ago. It has since become one of our favorite games. It’s also easy for my boys to refresh the game by adding their own homemade monster and weapon cards. My kids love to make their own games. Castle Panic is a lot of fun, so I would invite you to play a quick game.
If we were having coffee, I would send you home early. It would be time for more cat care. But I would promise to invite you back real soon.
If We Were Having Coffee is a blog hop inspired and run by the lovely and talented Diana at Part Time Monster. Please drop by her place for coffee. You can also see what other bloggers are up to by checking out the hashtag #WeekendCoffeeShare on Twitter.