Buy Me A "Coffee"?

Hey all, here to share a bit of some sad news: my beloved cat Butters had to be put down last week. We noticed he was eating less and not as active (even by cat standards) last Monday, but he otherwise seemed to be normal - helping his brother with his bath (and then swatting him away when he got tired of it), making his way upstairs to use the litter box, etc. So we didn't think much of it, but then on Tuesday when he again didn't come right away for food, I picked him up and brought him to the dish - where he promptly flopped over as if he didn't have the energy to stand. I took him to the vet right away, and then they instructed me to take him to the emergency hospital where they quickly determined he needed a blood transfusion right away or he'd go into cardiac arrest, as he basically didn't have any blood count. So they did that, and ran tests, and were even able to get him kinda back to normal for a little bit, but then he declined again. The tests showed he had problems with his bone marrow and his heart in addition to the unexplained blood loss, plus he wasn't eating. Every option - which even the doctors seemed to practically be talking me out of - involved heavy and risky surgery (as trying to help one thing could race up problems with the other), so on Halloween night I had to say goodbye and let him go painlessly.

Of course any pet loss is difficult, especially with a 4 year old kid who doesn't quite understand the concept of death, but this one stings even more as he was originally my father's cat, who we inherited when Dad had to move away from MA to FL and couldn't take him with him. We never saw Dad again as he passed away down there a few months later, so having Butters around was a comforting reminder of my old man, and now I don't have that either. Long story short, I'm pretty sad - and about to get worse. See, animal hospitals don't provide refunds when they can't actually save your furry pal's life, and in a couple weeks I'm going to get a very, VERY big bill for all the procedures and intensive care they provided trying to save him, which would have been tough to manage even if I had the comfort of thinking "At least it was worth it". I didn't want to set up a GoFundMe or whatever, and I truly hate to ask, but if anyone would like to offer a bit of relief via Ko-Fi, it would be greatly appreciated. I've (hopefully!) been entertaining you guys for these past 11 years on my own dime, with no paywall or obtrusive ads, and I'd like to keep doing that, but alas if these bills prove to be insurmountable I'll need to focus my time on paid endeavors, which means HMAD would likely be abandoned, and I'd hate to do that. So if you can spare a few bucks to keep that from happening, consider it an investment!

(UPDATE)

Thank you in advance, and hug your furry ones for me. And please, never ever assume that you'll have more time with them, because the last thing I thought when I brought him to the vet would be that he would never be coming home. They're tiny and they can't talk - the doctors can only do so much when they don't know where to start, and illnesses don't take as long to ravage them as they do for us. Take nothing for granted, especially your time with them.

8 comments:

  1. Sorry to hear about your loss.

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  2. One of the saddest things I've ever done is putting my cat down. Sorry to hear it.

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  3. I'm so sorry for your loss, and as a reader for ten years (and a proud owner of your book), I'm more than happy to buy you some coffee.

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  4. will do chief....it's about time I coughed up a buck for what you do, I've read evey damn review on here (!), you've got a real talent, and when the chips are tough we gotta help however we can. Take care, keep looking forward, and we love love love what you do. Thank you sir!

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  5. Let me just say, BC, that I've been a decade or so long reader of the blog here and even though you aren't as active as before (good for you, BTW) I still have you bookmarked and check in daily. It's routine that I look forward to. I say this only to preface that I am truly, deeply sorry for you; as sorry as someone who "knows" you but doesn't know you and considers you a presence in my life, to some degree.
    It's been about five or six years now, I think, but I know what you're going through, again, to some degree.

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  6. There was a time in my life where I had nothing, I'd had my long-time girlfriend and love of my life ditch me and run off to California with my best friend. I'd had to move back in with my mother and nearly suffered a nervous breakdown. Then, one day, moping around the house, I looked down the hallway to the garage and there was a cat standing there, looking as startled to see me as I was to see the cat. I guess the door blew open and the outer door wasn't closed all the way and this cat just walked up in here. I mean, the cat ran away at first but kept coming back and I admired the moxie it had to stroll on into a house; a house where we had a dog. Beautiful long-haired orange and white cat. Shortly after I met a girl, got my life kind of together and my mom was selling her house and I was moving out on the last day we had the house. The girl I was seeing convinced me that, although I was never a cat guy, that the cat really liked me and that deep down, I did too. And y'know? I really had gotten attached to that cat. I had started feeding it and it finally started to let me pet it and not run away every time I so much as moved my feet. And then the last day came and I was ready to go and I said, y'know what? That cat is coming with me. I hadn't even named it or anything but I drove to Petco and bought a carrier and moved all my stuff in to my new apartment and went back to get the cat and...nowhere to be found. It'd usually come whenever I clucked my tongue, since that meant I had food but to no avail. I was really getting kind of distraught and panicky. That cat was ALWAYS around. I finally had to go; the new owners were showing up and I told them about the cat and gave them my number and begged them to call me if the cat showed up. Then I went and did the same to all my neighbors. I was pretty bummed about it but, lo and behold, two days later I got a call from a neighbor and raced over there. It wasn't even the struggle I thought it might be, getting a stray cat. No, the cat came bounding up to me meowing like it'd been looking for me too. We were inseparable after that. I mean, as much as you can be with a cat. I did give the cat a name at some point, simply by looking down and saying, "Uh, Mr. Face". And Mr. Face was actually a girl, so I hope she didn't mind but the name stuck and she was my spirit-animal. I read a lot and liked to sit outside on my porch and read and she'd always come out with me and just curl up next to me and not get in any trouble. She helped me get over a lot of things and was there for me, but c'mon, she was a cat. I loved her attitude and she wasn't a kitten when I found her and she'd already been fixed so she had a personality.

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  7. Then, after about four or five years, one night while I was asleep and she was lying on the end of my bed, I woke up in the dark and couldn't figure out why I was awake. Then I heard Mr. Face...growling? Rumbling in her throat but...I got up and picked her up and she was completely limp and still just kind of low-key growling and I was still so disoriented from waking up I couldn't get my mind to figure out what was happening. I was just so freaked out by how limp she was and I tried to check her throat and clear her airway but there wasn't anything blocking it and...and while I was looking in her eyes they went...glassy and I realized she wasn't breathing and I tried to find a pulse and I gave her cat CPR (which I had, weirdly, looked into at one time) and it didn't help. She was gone in my hands. I don't know what it was that killed her and I won't ever know. Did it matter at that point? She wasn't young and had been stray for who-knows-how-long. It could've been anything.
    I spent the next six-plus hours burying her in the lightening morning while it poured rain non-stop. Some of my friends thought I was being a little crazy about it, but how do explain the feelings you have for an animal to someone else? It was my responsibility to take care of that cat, even afterward. I loved her and I still miss Mr. Face to this day. There's never, ever, anything like the pet who saves you.
    I say all this because I think it's very cathartic to share these kinds of experiences with others, and not only cathartic for you but them as well. While destroying my feet digging that rock-hard grave (Chuck Taylor's are not shoveling shoes) I had to wrap this all up in my own head in some way and I settled on knowing that we both, mutually, improved the other's life. Mine, for some cosmic reason, is simply of a longer span. Theirs is of no less consequence. And they loved you.

    Peace to you in this time.

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