Is this your first visit? Here’s the story so far: Continue reading
After last weekend’s experience, I was feeling rather discouraged. You would think, for a psychic, this reincarnation stuff would be a bit easier, a bit less emotionally fraught. Not so, apparently. I remember the last time I felt like this, it was when Mocha had taken herself for a walk on a sunny afternoon and disappeared for 16 hours. In my worried searching for her, I just couldn’t “lock in” and find her, or talk to her at all.
After pasting the town with fliers, calling the taxi company to keep an eye out for her, and talking to all the grocery tellers asking them to ask people watch our for her, I fell into a semi-despairing sleep. I woke up from this sleep at 2am, to the *certainty* that Mocha was at the front door. And so she was. She came in, drank about three liters of water, and then slept for 12 hours straight. We later figured out that she’d walked the length of the beach and become stranded during high tide. She’d had to wait for the tide to go back out before returning.
Well, looking for Leo feels a lot like looking for a missing pet, and I haven’t been able to really “lock on” to him, either. Not for a while. This is why I was so excited about ragdolls this weekend. It felt right. This is also why it was so confusing when the environment was not what I’d expected AT ALL.
I now have my wonderful friend in Rescue, and self-described “Pit-Bull Pimp” calling her friends looking for kittens. She’s already sent me bunches of photos, and we were planning on visiting the SPCA in Port Alberni tomorrow, even though Sunshine says we won’t find them tomorrow. The pictures of the kittens in Port Alberni don’t feel right either.
I decided, today, to call this ragdoll breeder in Victoria whose website I’ve been checking for nearly two years. I’ve always enjoyed the photos of her cats and kittens, because all the photos show them *inside the house*, looking out windows and playing on the furniture. Alas, she hasn’t posted available kittens in over a year, which is why I didn’t contact her in the first place.
I sent her an email with a very brief account of our experience, and asked if she’d be willing to meet us in person *before* we committed to buying kittens from her, if she had any planned for the next six months. She emailed back right away saying she was sorry we’d had such a disappointing experience, and as it happened she did have kittens available. Would we like to talk on the phone?
I just got off the phone with her, and here’s the story.
Ragdoll Mom, as I’ll call her, had just returned after an extended, emergency stay with her ailing family member in Vancouver, and had to leave her cats at home, (presumably in the care of a human who wasn’t used to supervising fertile pets.) While Ragdoll Mom had not been planning on breeding her cats, and despite none of her cats being in heat, nor being due for being in heat, and despite their single male wearing “anti copulation pants”, she returned to kittens. Beautiful, but unplanned, unadvertised and unspoken for. This happened exactly ten weeks ago.
And guess what? There’s an orange-tabby-pointed male. Big, easy-going, already dog-friendly, as he plays with the collie puppy in their home.
This big, orange tabby “flame point” male has a sister, who will grow up to be “torbie” but who is currently all white.
I won’t know until I hold him whether this is my big beautiful Leo cat, but I’m very hopeful, you guys!
And guess what!
Ragdoll Mom also does not believe in pediatric spay / neutering. We actually see eye to eye on many things. Her kittens *really are* born right in her house, handled since birth, kept warm and safe and provided with vaccinations from a vet who does house calls.
I have a very good feeling about this you guys.
So, on Sunday, we’re going to drive BACK to Victoria to meet Ragdoll Mom, the mother cat, the father cat and *all of the kittens* and we’ll be allowed to *choose* the ones we want. There are apparently two big orange boys, and both boys have a sister they’re close to. She’s even going to hold off on advertising these boys until we have a chance to pick the one we want.
You know what else? These kittens were just a short walk away from the hotel we were staying at in Victoria last weekend.
We felt close because we WERE close! Well, we’ll see how this all turns out!
This podcast episode The Wild Kitten Chase is just for you, blog friends! I know you’re all just perched on the edge of your seats to find out what happened with our kitten mission this weekend!
We DID visit the breeder this weekend, we did not return with kittens, and we went on what shall henceforth be known as The Wild Kitten Chase!
This very special podcast episode features our first non-animal guest, Sweetie! We pretty much came home last night, flopped into bed, and I recorded this podcast with the pets all around us, while everything was fresh and funny!
Now, everything is uploaded and it’s weird, it looks like only half of the podcast may have uploaded? It’s past my bedtime folks. I’m just going to post this and if the podcast only partially posted, I’ll figure that out later. I have no idea why that would happen!
Just LOOK at this little guy:
See, the best laid plans about getting Ragdolls, and here, two Maine Coon kittens available in Victoria. RIGHT BEFORE we are planning on going to Vic. WHAT ARE THE CHANCES??? I was looking for Maine Coon kittens for ages and couldn’t find any near me that weren’t from sketchy / incredibly expensive breeders.
Is THIS one of our future kittens???
We’ll have to see how this all works out! But COME ON! How cute / crazy serendipitous is this?
We won’t know until I meet them, and if everything aligns, these kittens will wait for us. As things stand right now, we are planning on visiting the Ragdoll breeder on the 28th to check out her facilities, meet a few cats and *possibly* get kittens IF there are any available.
This little orange guy apparently has a brother.
Ooooo what’s going to happen???
I’ve been thinking a lot about cat food lately, what with Sunshine’s hyperthyroidism and the anticipation of the arrival of Team Kitten.
It’s interesting to find in my research, that ragdoll breeders across North America have very divergent opinions on what brand of food is best for this breed. Owing to the popularity of the Ragdoll, Royal Canin even has a Ragdoll-specific cat food.
Okay, so most animal nuts like me have been conditioned to believe that no grain, no corn, no soy is a good place to start. But here’s the thing: the highest-quality kibbles tend to give kittens the runs!
And what about the animal’s point of view? What do they want?
Chicken, every day.
She means she wants cooked chicken breast, still warm, cut up into 2” pieces. Maybe some juices.
Last time I took Sunshine to the vet, the vet very strongly recommended *against* the dehydrated raw food I was giving to Sunshine. I started feeding her Honest Kitchen Prowl, which is a dehydrated, powdered cat food that is borderline-raw. It’s been pasteurized / cooked to a high enough temperature for a long enough time that salmonella risks are very much reduced, although you should still treat it like it’s raw chicken.
We started feeding this to Sunny after the regular foods just couldn’t keep the weight on her. Her hyperthyroidism was revving her metabolism and she just couldn’t eat enough nutrients.
When we switched her over to the Honest Kitchen, she stabilized for a number of months and stopped losing weight. Between the Honest Kitchen and the Thyroid Gold supplement, she felt a lot better, although it really seemed she was preparing to leave her body for a while there. She was happy, purring, playing and all, but she seemed… faded. Sweetie has an odd knack of being able to sense when a person or animal is getting ready to go, and she gave me a “warning” a while back.
When Sunshine’s thyroid gland became enlarged despite the supplement, we started on the pills from the vet, which now mandates regular blood testing. We’ll see how she tolerates the testing (the last time went terribly, but we’re going to a different vet. Hopefully they’ll do a better job, and I hopefully Sunny remembers to stay calm and that everyone is helping her.) She is certainly tolerating the pills very well so far, and she’s even started to regain some weight for the first time in 8 months.
Here’s the thing: The vet commented on Sunshine’s condition being surprisingly good, considering her thyroid was enlarged. My thought is, “Why do you think she’s in such good condition? Surely that has something to do with her food!”
Sunshine’s coat is very soft and thick, and improved noticeably when we switched her to Honest Kitchen (Prowl only, the other types have iodine-rich ingredients like sea weed.) Hyperthyroid cats tend to go bald! To me, she is obviously doing very well on the dehydrated raw food.
Well, the vet sent me home with a pamphlet on how raw food is potentially fatal to me and my cat. This is the party line from the College of Veterinary Surgeons. Well, I’ll take it under advisement.
When our pets get sick, or heck, when *we* get sick, we tend to look to the diet to figure out what we did “wrong”. With Leo and Sunshine, honestly, I could not access the best food for them all their lives. When Leo died before he was 20 years old, as all of us who love our pets expect the maximum life span, I wondered if I’d just fed him some magic combination of wonder-food, would he have lived longer?
I think this is why the prey-model raw food folks are willing to put hours and hours and hundreds of dollars a month into their cat’s bellies.
With this sky-high standard of care, there can be substantial guilt involved in keeping an animal for a friend, one who relies solely upon US to give them what they need to be healthy and happy.
I tell ya, when Sweetie and I didn’t have much money or a car, we *had to* feed grocery store pet food to our pets. For the record, if pet food is sold in a grocery store, it’s generally considered to be low-quality. Hell, we were eating a lot of rice and lentils ourselves! But if you ever ask a pet, “Would you rather live here with us, and eat this food, or go live with someone else and eat the best food?” What do you think they’ll pick?
Even the most food-motivated creature is going to pick the human friend over the food. You don’t need to ask. We know this. So we all ate the equivalent of Kraft Dinner for a couple of years.
On some days, when I’m missing Leo or worried about Sunshine, I wonder if these Kraft Dinner years shortened their lives.
So, Team Kitten. What will I feed Team Kitten? Two brand new bodies, two special little beings just waiting to come into our lives! Two hilarious, bouncing, mischievous, boisterous personalities ready to fill our house and lives with laughter and brevity! I am so looking forward to it.
I have *never* had an animal friend live with me their entire life. This will be the very first time that I bond with baby cats, just as they leave their mama. They will be the very first pets that come to me *healthy* from the very beginning. I won’t need to fix them up, they’ll *already* be healthy!
They won’t be underweight from neglect or overweight from months confined to a kennel with unlimited amounts of low-quality food. They will have strong muscles from playing with their mother and siblings, from climbing the cat trees in their birth home and they’ll be used to being handled by people.
They will have had the very best of starts – all I’ll have to do is keep it going, not screw it up!
Of course, I’m in full-on planning and research mode. What is the breeder feeding? What should I feed? How much wet? Should I offer unlimited dry? Should I feed dry at all???
Back when I was a teenager, wet food was considered to be terrible for their teeth. Now, dry food is the enemy and considered to be the cause of kidney disease and a numerous other problems, especially if there’s grain in the kibble.
Do you know what Sunshine’s second-favourite food is, next to cooked chicken? Canned fancy feast. Cats LOVE the stuff. It’s full of sugar! OF COURSE they love it!!! It really is not the healthiest food for them, and yet, I see the tides have turned and I am reading on multiple websites that wet food such as wiskas or fancy feast should be at least HALF of their diet!
My, how times change. In the 1990s, wet food was cautioned and should only be used as a special treat!
Sunshine gets a good-quality canned wet food twice a day, as well as a half-serving of Honest Kitchen, rehydrated with warm water. She has a semi-moist kibble available to her at all times, which she doesn’t really eat anymore. She just likes to know it’s there. She is a very spoiled kitty!
I just heard from the breeder and they recommend Royal Canin kitten 36, and believe it or not, she was recently at a conference in France where the vet said that Fancy Feast was the best food at preventing kidney issues. Isn’t that crazy? I fed both Sunshine and Leo Fancy Feast, and in my research about the cause of hyperthyroidism, it seems that cheap, fish-flavoured canned foods like Fancy Feast are being implicated.
So you see, it’s hard to really know what to feed our pets! Vets from across the world are looking at different research and so form different opinions, depending upon their country of origin.
From the animal’s point of view, it depends on who you’re talking to. A dear kitty friend had terrible irritable bowel syndrome, and the owner tried a dehydrated raw (I can’t remember if it was Honest Kitchen or Stella and Chewies) and he seems to be doing very well on it, last I heard. He communicated the feeling of the dry kibble to be like a lump in his stomach he had trouble moving through his body, and he didn’t experience that feeling with the dehydrated raw at all, although it took him a while to get used to the texture of the reconstituted food.
This belly full of mud feeling is really common in dogs who scarf dry kibble too. Some older dogs really benefit from having their kibble moistened with warm water before feeding, so that the dry kibble doesn’t suck all the moisture right from their stomach. Mocha really complained of this in the last year of her life. If I could’ve afforded to move her completely off of kibble at that time, I would have. If Mocha had the choice, she would have eaten only pizza.
Meanwhile, for my old Leo boy, his very favourite all time foods were, in this order: Fancy Feast Salmon, Cheeze Whiz, Pringles plain chips, Cheetos (loved the cheese and the corn).
Whenever I’d pop open a can of pringles, he’d come running and sit on the couch behind me, place his big paw on my shoulder and purr. And Purr. And PURRR!!! It was the weirdest thing, he loved Pringles.
So clearly, the pet’s preference is not necessarily the best guiding star to a healthy diet!
How about you guys? What do you feed? What have you fed in the past? How old are your critters / how long did they live? Did they get sick? What did they get???
You see what I’m trying to do here, right? I’m trying to find the perfect food so that Team Kitten will live forever! HA!
(Incidentally, Ragdolls generally don’t live past age 15. They’re large-breed cats, and like large-breed dogs, they tend to lead shorter lives. If I truly wanted longevity, I’d go for Abyssinian!)
NEXT TIME: I’ll write about pet reincarnation. For the record, the white Snowball kitten and the Leo cat spirits / consciousness have not yet gone into kitten bodies, even though these kitten bodies have already been born for them. Just yesterday, Leo said that it still wasn’t clear where he was supposed to go. Maybe it’s not decided which kittens we’ll get when, there’s still free will, there’s still some randomness yet.
Last week I had a conversation with the delightful Lisa Rowan who writes for the Penny Hoarder! Lisa is also one-half of my very favourite podcast, Pop Fashion. I was so stoked to talk to this internet-famous lady who has been in my ears every week for the past year. She and Kaarin are very dedicated podcast producers. I have podcast envy.
We talked about my work as an animal communicator and spirit medium, as well as the practical aspects of running a psychic business!
Stay tuned, I’ll post it when it goes up, which will be at the end of September!
We are so excited to announce that Sweetie & I are expecting – KITTENS!
Here’s the story:
More than four years ago, Leo the tabby cat was still alive, I started having visitations from a little white kitten with blue eyes. The consistent message was “I am ready to come live with you.”
Around this time, both Leo & Sunshine started to campaign for a third cat. Sunshine was behaving as though she was going to give birth to this kitten herself (via a surrogate.) She was very insistent. We lived in a small two-bedroom apartment and ran a start-up coffee roastery. We were planning on separating from the business and knew there were uncertain financial times ahead – we could *not* take on a another animal.
(C’Mon Mom! There’s plenty of room!)
So I said no, and no, and no. I put the word out to friends that if they ran across a white kitten that needed a home, let me know, but I continuously asked new the white cat to wait.
As this went on for nearly six months, we got some additional information. Sunshine insisted we needed to bring this white male cat in so she could “teach him”. Leo had been asking for a third cat for years, so the cats would outnumber the dogs in the house.
In 2011 we said goodbye to our business, and it was taken over by friends of ours who are doing really well. I can’t tell you how vindicating that has been, over the long-term. We *knew* it was a great idea and a great business, it just wasn’t meant for us. We were meant to start it up, because our friends, with small children, could NOT have gone through what we did to establish that roastery. We still drink their coffee to this day. There’s a whole long story behind that, story for another day. It was a time of relief, sadness, disappointment and overall uncertainty.
In 2012 my beloved Mocha dog had a stroke and passed away that same day, after we had just spent a solid week together in February. (February is my low-energy month, so I like to take a week off of all work and do nothing but chill. I’m so glad I had this intensive time with Mocha right before she died. Her last mean was even her favourite thing: pizza.)
(Mocha in 2003, about six months after her adoption into our family. She’s about 4 years old.)
In 2013, Leo, a piece of my heart and soul, passed away close to midnight. I held him and begged the angels to take him quickly. I missed Leo like I was missing a limb. I wanted him to come back so badly, but the timing was terrible. By then, we’d given up our series of beater vehicles and moved to Tofino, so I could be within biking distance of my part-time job at the hospital, and Kat’s seasonal job at the gallery. Our housing in Tofino was barely suitable for two humans and two pets, although we observed *much worse* in the months we spent looking for better accommodation. Besides, at this time it became clear that TWO kittens were waiting to come in. Two at one time, the white kitten, and Leo.
(Leo in 2003, in the kitchen cupboard of our Toronto apartment. He’s waiting for Cheese Whiz.)
I’m glad that I waited.
In 2014, my mother’s diagnosis, when the grieving began, and this past April, on the 23rd, her passing. Her funeral was the day before mother’s day. I and the rest of my family have been slowly learning how to move forward without her. It’s still a shock. Longevity runs in our family, we all *expected* her to live into her 80s!
So much change.
We moved again, right in the middle of my mother’s transition through the hospice care and out of her body. And now, it’s been six months.
We’re settled into our new home. It’s so quiet here. Sweetie has her art studio. She’s producing art cards, setting up manufacturing for her knitwear designs and producing more paintings for the gallery. I’m so proud of her.
And I’m proud of me! My schedule is filling up, I have my OWN OFFICE. I’m planning some exciting things for 2016!
(Sunshine, the day after we got her in 2004.)
Sunshine is doing very well so far on her new meds. Her thyroid has shrunk down, and she’s running around and playing with energy again. We’ll see the true evidence in early October when she goes back for her blood test… but she is *feeling* pretty great.
Sunshine made it clear earlier this year she no longer wanted a kitten. As her body got weaker, it seemed like a bad idea, and I was resigned to supporting Sunshine through her illness and being potentially cat-less for the first time since I was 19.
But Sunny is doing so very well. And now, on her new meds, it wouldn’t be the *worst thing* in the world if she got into kitten food. (We had to be careful to restrict iodine in her food before the new meds.) And you know what? *I* want kittens. It’s time. I never stop thinking about it. Actually, I’ve been thinking about it for four years, ever since the little white kitten with blue eyes announced his presence. And selfishly, I want Leo to come back!
I talked to Sunshine. Sunshine said okay, as long as they were small enough that she could let them know she is the BOSS cat. Not 6 month old kittens, but only three month old kittens would be acceptable.
I really think that kittens will give Sunshine more interest in her life. Mocha really perked up in her last years after we brought Happy home. For his part, Happy the Dog only cares about lap time, food and walks. I think Team Kitten will give him some new challenges, some new creatures to relate to, and will help take the burden of his attention off of Sunshine.
We’ll have to keep the kittens and the dog separate until they’re old enough to handle themselves. Given Happy’s intensity, and the incident with Sunshine, I wouldn’t trust Happy with the kittens alone. That’s good advice to anyone with young kittens anyway – don’t leave young kittens alone, unsupervised, with adult pets. Not until the kittens are developed enough to have some common sense. So there will be some modifications necessary for the first few months, and kitten-proofing the kitchen is probably how we’ll go. I’ll put a nice tall plywood gate in the hall.
I decided to investigate the possibilities.
Here’s the thing: I really want to get these kittens from their birth place, and I really, really want them to have strong, healthy bodies. I want to apply everything I’ve learned about feeding cats to these beauties from day 1. I want them to never know a moment of uncertainty in their lives. I want them to be joyful little embodiments who expect the best from everything and everyone. I want them to have the best start.
I had previously resolved to only adopt through rescues…. But.
But I worry about my little Leo cat, coming through as a teeny vulnerable kitten. Where will he appear? How would I find him? How long would he have to be in a rescue or a humane society before I found him? How stressed out would his mom be? How good would his nutrition be?
This is a situation where you really could just let go and trust that it’d all work out. It would work out just fine… But.
I have had so little control over things relating to my pets in the past few years. I couldn’t control Leo’s death experience, or Mocha’s short life. I tried but couldn’t control Sunshine’s hyperthyroidism without the medicine that’s likely to send her into kidney failure further down the road. I certainly couldn’t control the factors surrounding my Mom’s death. Hell, I’m struggling to regain control over my eating habits!
You know what gives me a sense of control? Selecting a home of birth for my kittens. I nice home where the cats are born and raised in a family setting. An experienced home where the Mother cat was born, and knows everything is going to be just fine. The Mother cat has been fed the best food all her life, and SHE comes from a line of ancestors which can be traced and shown to be reasonably healthy, of good temperament and long-lived.
I can pick that home and say to the white kitten and Leo Cat and say, “Ok guys, GO FOR IT!”
And so we have! We found a well-established breeder of ragdolls, who have been genetically screened to be healthy and reasonably long-lived. They have a good reputation and have been quick and forthcoming with email answers to my numerous questions, which is more than can be said for every other breeder I’ve contacted. They have many glowing testimonials a great deal of transparency, compared to other breeders.
Why ragdolls? Well, I’ve been researching ragdolls for a couple of years. They were, at one time, extremely inbred, resulting in some genetic defects not unlike the other very popular breeds like Himalayan / Persian, Siamese, and don’t even get me started on the Bengal and Sphynx.
Leo was part Maine Coon, and I would have loved to get a pair of Maine Coon kittens – but there aren’t any Maine Coon breeders in my area. There are some weird things happening with Maine Coon breeding too – breeding for cats so large they’re almost deformed. The ones that are breeding responsibly, for healthy, non-mutant cats, are extremely expensive! AND none of them have responded to my email enquiries about their breeding program.
I thought “Maybe I should just go for a mixed breed from the humane society?”
But then I started all those worries again, and the trouble out here seems to be many of the available kittens are born to feral, inbred wild cat colonies. I know two local people whose rescued cats died from inbreeding-related genetic defects before 2 years of age. And I know many people whose kittens have grown into cats that really prefer not to be handled. Sunshine herself loves to snuggle, but she hates to be picked up and held. It triggers her survival alarms of feeling trapped.
And then there’s the spay / neuter question. Kittens who go through the humane society in British Columbia are spayed / neutered before they’re released to homes, no matter how old they are. Even if they’re only 8 weeks old! I’ve done a lot of reading on pediatric spay / neutering and there’s no real evidence right now that there is any adverse effect of early altering… but the idea just alarms me.
I think, it’s my desire to control their experience. I want to select the vet who alters my pets. I want to discuss with the vet and decide when the time is right. Me. Because having this little bit of control makes me feel a hell of a lot better. For whatever cumulative series of reasons, this is what feels right to me.
So today we committed to the breeder and said we’d like to get in line for a pair of littermates.
Our fluffy little white guy? He’s identified as Sweetie’s childhood cat, Snowball. Snowball was born to a litter in Sweetie’s childhood home and was with her since she was a kindergartener. He died shortly after Sweetie moved out on her own to attend university. He says he left his body so he could be with her as a spirit cat. Then Sunshine came into my life shortly after Sweetie did, her white cat contingent kicking in just as soon as a pet-friendly apartment was available! It’s very clear Sunshine is Sweetie’s cat. She loves me and all, but it’s Sweetie she snuggles with in the morning.
As much as I felt like Leo was coming as an orange tabby, he was always pretty flexible. He’ll go wherever I can get him. Besides, it’s nearly impossible to anticipate the mature colouring of a ragdoll cat. They’re like Dalmatians, you just have to wait a couple of years for all their spots to come in. As for the white boy kitten? Well, did you know that ragdolls are born all white?
I’m very excited. Now that we have selected a breeder and gotten in line, we’re just waiting for the word that our boys are here. (I’m assuming at least one of them will be a boy. We’ll see how this turns out.)
I’m pretty sure we’ll have kittens by Christmas. Maybe sooner. We’ll see!
So I was off to a good start, and I backslid. Back to the beginning.
This is sometimes how it goes with weight loss for me, especially when there are such weighty emotional issues behind every pound.
Confronting your weight is like confronting a thousand little failures, and eating disorders are composed of that perspective of failure. Whether it’s anorexia, bulimia, overeating, or self-soothing, the mental hardships behind every visible pound lost or gained is the real struggle.
So I try to remind myself not to be judgmental. Not to view the extra weight as a failure, not to view even the day’s food choices as a failure. They’re just indications of other needs. It means I need to put more attention on what I actually need.
For me, my struggle right now is with compulsive eating. It’s painful, to feel like my eating is occasionally out of my hands. I’ve been reading a bit about eating disorders, a book my counselor sent to me. Now, I don’t experience extreme attacks of compulsive eating, but I definitely find myself eating things I don’t actually want to be eating, or in quantities I don’t want to be consuming. I find myself unable to stop.
That is the terrible and shameful secret behind my particular manifestation of disordered eating: this lack of control. The struggle, then the “failure.”
The solution, for me, as I’ve accomplished this in the past, is to allow myself no opportunity to make impulsive eating choices. I have to create this imbalance to create weight loss. I plan out my consumption a week in advance, and I eat only those things. I take an extreme and hard line on not accepting food from others, and I tend to prefer to eat alone. It takes a LOT of effort.
THAT behaviour, according to this book, is itself disordered eating.
Fuck you, book.
It’s very frustrating at times. The book says to eat mindfully. To simply stop when you’re full. To resist extreme measures of control on your habits… but I think that approach is more useful for those coming at this from the anorexic end of the spectrum. I didn’t become uncomfortably large in my body by exerting *too much* control over my eating habits. Over eating is an imbalance, and I’m honestly struggling to regain the balance, the control.
I cried about food today! A friend tried to give me food the other day, and I thanked her but didn’t accept it, because I didn’t *want* to eat it, and I knew if I accepted it I *would* eat it. So the next day she, supportively, brought me “healthy snacks”. I again rejected her food offering and really confused the fuck out of her.
I cried, and then I realized that the pain here was in the secret – the struggle I was experiencing that I wasn’t telling her. So I brought her in on my experience, that I’m having difficulty controlling my food consumption, so I have to only eat things that I have decided myself, in advance, that I would eat.
She very helpfully asked me about my physical activity.
Anyone who’s been through this before knows how this question makes you feel: like you want to smack your head against the wall and strangle her at the same time. Yes, I do go to the gym regularly, however for me the food consumption is the issue. The first time Sweetie asked me about this I burst into tears then, too. It’s no fault of my friend, that’s for sure. Burning 300 – 400 calories is great but I can easily consume twice that for a bedtime snack if I’m not careful.
For people who don’t have this struggle, it’s very difficult for them to relate to me when I try to explain why I can’t eat that thing, or why your offer of a salad makes me cry.
After our talk though, my friend only wanted to be supportive, even if she didn’t really understand why this whole thing was making me cry so hard. We agreed that when she wanted to be supportive she could offer me hugs, and I would always accept them.
I really do have great friends.
Anyway, I don’t want you guys to worry about me. This emotional shit: this is all part of the process. That’s why I’m writing about it. I’ve always been real on the blog.
It feels familiar, actually, this crying about food. I remember the last time I had this much weight to lose, I had a massive crying jag in the office of my nurse nutritionist.
It is fuckin’ hard, y’all. But I’ll get there, I’ll get through it. And I know that because no matter how long I have to try, I will always keep trying. I’ll do my best not to look at this through the lens of “failure” and instead focus on my success. Such as: I DO go to the gym. I am actually in better cardiovascular health than I’ve ever been in my life (thanks to my two years of biking and my gym habit maintenance). That’s actually really important, because I have a heart murmur, so my ticker needs to tick a little harder and faster to do the same job as a normal heart.
So yeah, it’s an uphill process. But I’ll keep encouraged. I may need to start food blogging on instagram a bit.
Besides, I have something super-happy to tell you guys about. Tomorrow.
Here’s another incident I remember. We had moved from the apartment into a house with a backyard, walking distance to my school. This must have happened when I was around six or seven years old. I would walk to and from school with my best friend, and my parents were taking child-abduction precautions like making me memorize my phone number and address, having my finger prints cataloged at the local police office and telling me never to get into a car with a stranger.
Well, they decided to see if their lessons sunk in, and they sent a friend of theirs, whom I’d never met, to try and “give me a ride home”. She pulled up beside me in her car, popped open the passenger door, addressed me by name and asked if I wanted a ride home.
I remember the incident and how smiling and friendly this lady was, and I remember the complete lack of danger around the whole thing. This was not how I imagined kidnapping would be like. I thought, “Well, getting kidnapped isn’t scary at all!” But of course I obeyed my lessons and refused to get into her car.
Check out what I said:
Note also, my financial advice. Seriously, you should always have money for chocolate milk. What the hell, Dorie? :D
My Dad has located a journal my mother kept when I was a toddler just learning to speak. I am absolutely thrilled and so grateful that he found this, because I was semi-looking for it when I was visiting after my mother’s funeral in May. I sort of assumed I’d run into it while we were clearing out her clothing, and at the time I was too flattened to get it together and ask Dad if he’d seen it.
Well, without me asking, my Dad found it! He’s been sending me the scanned pages, a few each day, about the best email drip campaign I could have ever signed up for!
I thought I’d share this one, because it’s something that I actually remember happening. I used to go to my aunt & uncle’s apartment some days, and I spent a good amount of time with my uncle. When I got older, I used to go live at their house for a week or two in the summers. I have three strong memories of visiting their North Bay apartment:
1) going “fishing” with my uncle in a stream I later learned had no fish. I used a lure that looked just like a rubber frog. I really loved to go fishing with my uncle.
2) the hamster my aunt & uncle had as a pet. I loved that little creature, although I was too rough with him and he bit me once. As he should.
3) my lame excuse to try and trick my uncle into giving me canned peaches:
Second breakfast? I must have been a hobbit in a past life.
This time when I was learning to speak, my mom amused herself by teaching me complicated alternatives to simple words. Instead of teaching me “That’s hard to do,” she taught me “That’s difficult. That’s an arduous task.”
As you can see, I occasionally misused these bigger words, or got them mixed up with similar-sounding big words. Either way, my Mom got a kick out of hearing big words fall out of my little kid mouth. I remember a lot of what I said made her chuckle, and years later she first showed me this journal she kept of all the things I said that day that made her smile.
I’m really glad to have this now.
I’ve been posting on Facebook about Sunshine’s hyperthyroidism. We had to take her to the vet on Thursday because her thyroid gland is causing her to cough and swallow. You know that feeling of dry-swallowing a big vitamin? That’s what she has.
In this video, Sunny gives us the update for today.