Wednesday, May 01, 2013


Mum said I had to update, so here I am.

But that was on Sunday, when the most exciting thing happening was our hilarity at the delay on Skype between Josh screaming and his mouth opening. Small things amuse small minds.

Monday was a holiday, Golden Week has begun, but it's chopped in half this year, so it'll feel squeezed into two weekends.

Then I cam home on Tuesday after going shopping with Erica to find Vanilla on the sofa, just sitting in that typical cat paws-under-body style, blood pouring out of her left ear. Lena got me a damp cloth to clean it up, and a dry one, and I wiped and wiped, and held the cloth down on her ear a bit to see if I could stop the bleeding. Whenever I thought it might have stopped, I left her for a bit, but then I'd notice it welling up inside again.

Meanwhile I was running around like a headless chook trying to find the cage door for the cat box to take her to the Vet. To do that I had to clear all the cat stuff out of the spare room where we stashed it for Amy's birthday party. I eventually found it on the shelf of our home-made cat tree/feeding station thingy, but not before cleaning up the spare room!

It looked like a murder scene inside the cat box, as she kept shaking her head and scratching. We were actually triaged at the Vet's and bumped up ahead of two customers. They couldn't find the source of the bleeding, and I began wondering if my fears of some kind of hemorrhage weren't actually true. They put the cone of shame on her to stop her scratching, and he gave her a pain killing medicine that made her really dopey, and had a further look but still couldn't find it. He offered to keep her for a few hours to see if the bleeding stopped, so we left her and came back two hours later.

The bleeding had not stopped. The Vet suggested a general anesthesia next, so they could check more thoroughly, so she was knocked out, complete with tiny oxygen mask. He found the cut, deep inside her ear, and cauterized it with an electrical zapper (complete with friendly Vet's stories of the time he cauterized and treated his own arm wound with his Vet equipment!).

He was already commenting on how unusual it was for such a small cut to bleed that much, so the idea of hemophilia came up at that point. He took a blood sample from her thigh (remarking at how thin her blood seemed), and checked it, and at that point said it looked fine, so I was hoping again at this point that it was just an unusual bleed.

We left her there, and I rushed home and rushed off to a class. Kanji interrupted my lesson (at Joyfull restaurant near home) to get the cat box out of the car, because the Vet suggested bringing the other two in for tests. He quietly told me it was a serious illness, which got me quite worried, it was a challenge to finish the class!

But I did, and called him and he told me to wait for him outside the restaurant (he was at the mall over the road). He told me the Vet had said Vanilla would quite likely die, but the Vet was watching her and giving her blood, and they had decided not to test the other two, because of the nature of the problem. So I went home, very sad, to crying children (Erica happily had fallen asleep on the sofa). We all had a restless night, which for me included  a horrible dream.

(We were on some kind of boat, it was sinking. I was trying to save everyone of course. I looked up and saw a massive typhoon bearing down on us, and I just knew there was no way - we would die. The only thing I could think of to do, as there were no props to use, was lie on our backs and float, and tell the kids to think of something pleasant. I had to be the Mum who had to tell her children they were going to die and try to prepare them, every mother's nightmare. I held the baby on my stomach. My right arm was around Amy's head, and she inexplicably and oddly - even in the dream I thought it was odd - wanted to think about trying beer for the first time, because she never got to try it. Even my dream self couldn't handle seeing what came next, and I 'cut' to a news show with a very very bad report of the disaster, with a kid brought on the show to show everyone how the kids in the disaster would eat their candy. Then I was in a helicopter, with the realization that I was alive. And the kids weren't with me. I had hope they too would be found, of course, but also had to admit that it was not likely that they survived being in the open ocean in a typhoon. Genki was saved and inside my sweater. I woke bawling of course, feeling guilty for getting angry at Erica and Amy earlier in the week. Lena was beside me in bed, which I think is why I didn't feel she was gone. And of course waking to the realization that one of my little loved ones really might be gone). 

I avoided calling the Vet's all day as I had to work, and knew it would be nearly impossible if I thought my kitty was dead or dying. As it was, my tiredness and sadness meant the students didn't get their (parents') money's worth today - slack teacher!

I picked up the kids and we all trooped off to the Vet's to check on her. She saw us and miaowed and kissed our hands! She wanted to come home! She was finally stabilized, but the diagnosis was certain now that he had done more testing. Hemophilia. No cure, no treatment, just rush her to the Vet if she ever gets cut. He said he worked until 3am to stabilize her. She's coming home tomorrow.

Where we will forever have to keep her inside, because she cannot get pregnant (fingers crossed she isn't now from the little escape she had a month ago) and she can't have the operation either. Of course it also means that treatment if she gets ill will be limited, and she won't ever be able to have an operation. And we'll have to rush her to the Vet if she gets even the smallest cut. I don't know if it means we will be going through the whole (expensive!) blood transfusion and three days in hospital thing every time she gets a cut, but the thought of leaving her to bleed to death is just horrific.

And of course the other two might have it too!

The only good thing is that my broken toe (now just aching, but I still can't wear even my most comfortable shoes) prevented me from bringing them in to get spayed, which I had planned to do three weeks ago. If I had, Vanilla definitely, and maybe the other two as well, would have died on the operating table. At least this way we have time to get used to the fact that our kitties will not live long, and spoil them rotten while they are here!


Anonymous said...

Wow, so sorry to hear this. What a shock for you all. I hope that she stabalizes quickly and that all three don't have it. I can't imagine your vet bill though.. Nancy in Tokyo

Rachel said...