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the stress is really starting to get to me

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
i have two cats and cat sit my grandkitty often (he's here now, he is a sweetie and no trouble at all)

my Nell who is about 8, she is a sweetheart too and also no trouble at all.
although sometimes i feel like i am neglecting them.

but my old girl, Mickie, who is 18, my entire life revolves around her. and i dont mind, i love her to peices, she is a super cat!! but i am not getting hardly any sleep and i am getting grouchy with people and i hurt all over (from recent injuries that i am supposed to be in physical therapy for, but just do not have the time)

the Mickmeister, as i sometimes call her, is in renal failure and the vet thinks she may also have a cancer, probably intestinal lymphoma.
in spite of eating enough food (until very recently) for THREE cats, she is losing wt.
she may also have IBD, but only a biopsy would say for sure, and i wont put her thru that.
she has lost a lot of wt, and muscle and is just skin and bones now, very frail,
and she is getting the max safe dose of subQ fluids per day.
i know that she will not be with me a whole lot longer, so i try to spend as much time with her as i can.

because it upsets her to see me cry, i am holding back my tears for her sake but i have this constant lump in my throat that really hurts. sometimes i feel like i will explode if i cant just let some of this out.

my biggest fear is that *i* will be so tired and worn out, that i will project that onto her, and think that it is time for *her*, when its still too soon, and its just me who needs some sleep.

she wakes me up about once every hour all nite long. for awhile she had stopped doing that, so i went back to day time hours, but what had happened was that she was getting sicker and sleeping more

now that her fliuds have been increased, she seems to feel a bit better and has gone back to being awake all night, so i am in the process of switching my hours back so that i sleep during the day and i am at night (i am permanently disabled so at least i do not have to leave the house much)

i dont know what to do

i am sure there are others here with sick or elderly or needy cats (Mickie is all three of these, she has always required a LOT of attention)
how do you cope with the stress so that you can enjoy whatever time you have left with your baby??

althea the exhausted
post #2 of 6
Althea I moved your post to the forum where people who have cared for senior cats can answer you. The lounge is for more light-hearted subjects so there really aren't many that frequent there that could help you.
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
oh sorry
i am sleepwalking here and did not notice this forum
post #4 of 6
I just try to take it one day at a time. Patrick has had so many ups and downs in the past 3+ years (he has chronic renal failure, hyperthyoidism and either IBD or Lymphoma - which we are treating simply with prednisolone), some times are better than others. He is now 18 and 1/3 years old, and I did catch him attaching a catnip toy just last week - but mostly he naps or asks to be on my lap or my husband's shoulders, or begs me for treats.

I am on a support list for crf kitties that has helped enormously, plus I refer as needed to the best site on the net (imo) re crf, which is www.felinecrf.org

I notice that the days I make the most time for snuggles and one on one time, are the days Patrick "smiles" the most. So, despite how busy and hectic life is right now, I am focusing on making time for this when he's awake, not when it suits me as I do truly treasure every day with him. He has been so incredibly special in my life since the day I witnessed his birth.

We are at a point where I will not put him through certain procedures (I too nixed a biopsy, only going so far as an ultra sound to try and decide if it was lymphoma versus ibd) as I doubt he'd survive the anesthesia. But he gets his meds, assist-fed he if he needs it, subq fluids (plus he's done very well being on calcitriol) and lactulose or slippery elm bark syrup as needed.

I find it helps tremendously to be able to vent here if times are tough...I promise you, others here do understand.
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
thanks Pat, i think somewhere else in another thread i called you alix by mistake but i cant remember where it was, i went to lay down and all i could think was, thats not her name its Pat! shoulda just got up and fixed it....

will write more later, right now my baby (my going on 89 year old baby) needs me!

post #6 of 6
Just to throw this out there, has she been tested for hyperthyroidism? If so, what was her level? Often, numbers on the higher end of normal are too high for our older kitties.

I don't think there is anything wrong with crying and telling her you love her. I know that when I get worried about Spot, I cuddle up with him and cry and think about the good times that we have had. Who knows...it may even make her feel needed. It is hard to be a primay caregiver, whether to a person or a pet.
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