In Memory of Jasmine

Today I took Morgan to our unbelievably awesome vet for his 6 month checkup. 6 months ago we didn’t know if he would live or die. He is a miracle and a wonderful cat. I am so thankful that he made it through. Our vet told us that not only is he out of the woods, but he is so far out we can barely see them anymore!!! I almost cried on the way home, and realized that I have been perched on a thread these last six months waiting to see which way he was going to go. Now it is OK, he is OK — I can breathe and enjoy that he is with us and will be for a long time to come.

This has me reflecting on everything our family has gone through in the last year. It has been quite a year for us here. It all started in late August / early September when our darling little Jasmine suddenly got very ill. Ill enough that we had to rush her to the very expensive emergency clinic one night. I don’t remember the entire series of events. No surprise there as it was very stressful. I was in school full time and dealing with a very ill cat. It drained me beyond measure. She got better for a few weeks and we thought she was going to recover….and then one day she just dove downhill again. That was the day we lost her, at a mere 6 years of age. It was a terrible day and a terrible decision to have to make. I never wish that on anyone. We could have tried to save her, but it wasn’t likely to do much other than prolong the inevitable. She was so very sick and we knew that it was time. Our vet is so wonderful that he was almost crying with us when we were in the room as we said goodbye to her.

Closely following that, while my head was still swirling with all we had just gone through, Morgan became ill with the very same disease that took Jasmine’s life. The day I brought him into the vet and saw how yellow his skin was, I almost lost it. I probably did loose it actually. I had to leave him there and he was going to be there for a few days. I left him and as I walked out I remember sobbing so uncontrollably that I could barely breathe or see. I felt like I was being dramatic then, in retrospect I know now that it was what anyone would have done in my situation. I can’t even describe what I was going through then, but I know it was terrible.

He made it through 3 days of iv fluids and meds at the vets office and came home on Saturday. They wanted to see how he would respond to being home with us. The hope, of course, was that he would do better with his family than in a cage at the vets office. We set up his sick room, our bathroom, just for him. We piled a corner with the most comfy blankets we could find and topped it with one of my husbands shirts (he is very attached to him). I poured everything I had into him. I fed him, by hand, a special blend of food via syringe since he wasn’t eating. I sat with him and did some healing and energy work. I talked to him and loved him, and even sometimes cried. It was so horrifying to me to walk in that room and see the skeleton that had once been our baby boy. I could literally see death hanging around him and I was doing my best to keep him here, with us. Keep in mind, I was still in school full time and still reeling from the loss of Jasmine. I think I was probably just a shell of myself at that time. Knowing he needed me desperately is just about the only thing that kept me going. I was not going to give up on him, and dammit I was going to fight with everything I had to get him better.

Somehow, someway, he slowly started to get better. I don’t think that I believed he was really making progress at first. I could see the numbers from his bloodwork, but they meant nothing to me. I was terrified that he was going to turn like Jasmine did. How could I not be? In fact, I realize now that I have been waiting for that turn for the last seven months! Part of me will probably always be hyper-sensitive to him and react anytime he shows signs of being ill. Maybe even overreact. It still all just seems so very surreal. He is OK. I have to keep telling myself that.

Now, it wasn’t all bad. I made it through school, with decent grades. Add to that, we added a new cat to our family as well during that time, our sweet Callista. Never mind that we brought Calli home the night we checked Morgan into the vets for three days! A bit insane? Hell yeah, and we knew it. However, when we first met her, we knew she was family. You don’t leave family behind in a cage no matter how rough life is. She has been a great addition, and in some ways has helped me cope and deal with the loss of Jasmine. She is so beyond loving and sweet and seems to know just when I need some kitty loving.

So phew! All of that in about 7-8 months. I have taken a lot from all of it too. I am stronger from it, and I learned to trust my instincts, because they are always right on. Morgan and I became closer and formed a bond we just didn’t have before this. He is an amazing cat, all of our cats are. He was just always more attached to my husband. I am thankful for that new closeness with him. He loves to snuggle with me, and does it more now.

I also learned just how dangerous it was for a cat to stop eating. Never would I have imagined that it could cause so much damage so quickly! I always thought that they would eat if they were hungry and that is so not true! A cat who stops eating is in serious danger within 24 hours. Both Jasmine and Morgan developed Hepatic Lipidosis, or fatty liver disease. When a cats body starts to break fat down, their liver cannot process it like a humans can. It all builds up and can cause liver failure. It is so very scary to watch a cat decline so rapidly. It is a terrible disease and one that can so easily be prevented.

This post was a long time coming. I feel relieved, a bit numb, sad, happy, elated, so many things all at once right now. Because of the series of events that occurred, I didn’t get much time to mourn Jasmine. I do still miss her sometimes and always will. I also know that she led us to Calli without question. This post is made in her honor, her memory. Because of her Morgan is alive today. I knew what to do and how to save him. I was better equipped and we were much more familiar with our vet.

It is with this I end, in memory:




1 Comment

  1. Harriet said,

    June 17, 2009 at 12:41 pm

    Maeghan, I know how much you miss your sweet baby girl. Reading this brought tears to my own eyes. I agree that you have the best vet in the world and I thank you for sharing him with us. I’m so happy that Morgan is completely out of the woods. May he stay far away from those woods for a long time to come.

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