We rescued a dog this year for my eldest son. He’s been the perfect addition to our family. The one hiccup was our cat. As soon as we brought Enzo home, Cali would run and hide. She would escape outdoors and be gone for 3 days at a time. She officially became an outdoor cat.
Coldest Winter Ever
Then, winter set in. It was one of longest and coldest in years. For three months Cali slept in her bed in a basement window. She was gaining weight and seemed depressed. Enzo would howl and whine, begging for her to come play. But, Cali refused to come out. As soon as it warmed up, she was out. She was scared to come in for food so we fed her on the back porch. One morning, my husband found her sleeping in the shed. We started feeding her and put her bed there.
A New Home
By June I wanted to find her a new home. She wouldn’t even come inside our house. As soon as Enzo approached the door she was gone. I found someone on the homeschool list serve looking for a cat. I agreed to update Cali’s shots and pass her over to a family where she would actually live inside! Of course, the week I tried to give her away, she went missing (kitty intuition). We inquired about Cali on our neighborhood list serve. Neighbors sent pictures of her roaming but she would not come back to the shed or our house.
We packed up for a three week vacation and asked the house sitter to leave food outside and keep an eye out for her. She never showed up.
The day we arrived home, Cali materialized on the back porch. When I saw her, I almost cried. She was skin and bones, covered in fleas and barely moved. She couldn’t even meow.
As soon as I saw her I applied a topical flea treatment and barricaded her in a basement room. It wasn’t hard because she curled up in a ball and stayed there for 24 hours.
I’m my head, she had the paralysis symptoms of rabies. I thought she was due for her vaccines in June, but I called the vet. She was due in January!!! Every negative possibility consumed my mind. I was sure she was rabid or had kidney failure and her days were numbered.
I called the vet to bring her in and, through tears, asked about the prices of euthanizing a cat. August is an extremely tight month for us because neither my husband nor I make much income. #teacherlife #specialeventlife. The total cost would be $400. I hung up the phone, took a shower and cried my eyes out.
I finally secured an appointment for the cat on Friday (we got home on Tuesday). I had been using a medicine dropper to give her water, but she would not eat. I explained all of this to the vet. Mind you, I was the crazy lady who had missed shots and inquired about euthanizing an animal. The vet looked at me like she might call animal control any minute. She seemed genuine but said “what a story” when I reported the dislike between my two animals and the fact that Cali had run away.
The Truth Will Set you Free
Judgement aside, the diagnosis for Cali was pretty good. They gave her a shot of B12 and intravenous fluids. Also, she received a pill to open her appetite. As soon as we got home, she ATE AND DRANK WATER!! I was overjoyed.
The negative thoughts about my kitty and her fate were DEAD WRONG. I find this happens a lot with ADHD. The worst-case scenario becomes the ABSOLUTE TRUTH. I consider myself an intelligent person. But once I get to thinking something negative, the thought takes over along with a lot of self-blame. The good news: I’m usually wrong and I’m starting to recognize this pattern. We are currently fattening up our special Cali and looking to find her a home she isn’t scared to live in.
Does your negative thinking get the best of you? How do you get through it?