Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Sweet Maudie

Within a matter of days, or perhaps hours, our house will be home to one less feline spirit…or at least the body in which she has been housed for the past thirteen years.  Miss Maude is very ill.  She’s fixing to give up that body soon.  And there’s little for me to do but watch helplessly, and try to ease her transition, a little.

On Saturday, we took her to the local vet, who confirmed with an ultra-sound that her entire abdomen was full of cancer, which would explain her inability to eat.  We were given a few choices, including an offer of referral to a “veterinary oncologist” who would run batteries of tests and possibly offer chemotherapy as a treatment for our little soul.  Ugh.  I think of chemotherapy as cruel and unusual punishment for human beings.  I could not in good conscience seek such torture for this tiny five-pound mite who has shared my household for so long.  So we opted for palliative care.  Hoping to give Miss Maude a few days, maybe even a few weeks, without pain; a few days of “feeling better.”  I felt she deserved that if that was what we could offer.

So we went home with a bag full of medicines.  Antibiotics, steroids, opiates and fluids.  Hoping that we could buck her up some and she could reach some kind of plateau of improvement.  But after two and a half days of poking, prodding and sticking nasty things in her mouth to which she objects with every ounce of strength left in her body, it’s clear that these things are not doing her any good.  She follows me around the house and looks at me plaintively.  I feed her, but she can’t really eat.  And I haven’t seen her sleep in several days.  This is not okay.

It’s clear she is done.  I held her chin and looked into her eyes this morning, and I said, “Why don’t you just lay down and sleep for a bit, baby girl?”

And a voice inside my head said, “Because if I sleep, you’ll think I’m better and you won’t help me.  And I need your help.”

So I think that when Dad gets home from work this afternoon, we WILL help her. 


  1. Lisa. No words. Just don't be surprised if you see her peeking around the corner in the hall now and then.

    Maudie. You may have to wait at the bridge for awhile but when you get there just holler "Raminiak" or "Lisa's Kitties?" Believe me, you won't be alone while you wait. You were part of a pretty big family and some brothers and sisters who went ahead will be waiting for you. There might even be a dog or two. Play nice.