Who is to say?

This isnt’ my typical blog.  I have had a very emotional day and need to just let the feelings come out through my finger tips.

Today,  I took my 19 year old cat to the vet to be “put down” – euthanized.

It isn’t the first time that I have had to take a family pet when “it was time”.  I wish I could say I have never had to make this decision.

Cassidy had always been my baby. We were married for 6 months and couldn’t take being in an apartment where we couldn’t have animals.  One week after getting our house we called every shelter around – no kittens.  We were determined or more like desperate to have kittens that I even started to contact pet stores.  I had always said that I would never purchase an animal from a pet store or what I thought was like a “puppy mill”.  But then again, I said we wanted pets.  We finally found a store that had kittens and off we went.  We had only lived in the area a year.  We really didn’t know our way around.  It was before we had cell phones or gps in our car.  The store was closing soon and we called them for directions from a pay phone.  We finally found the store and they had closed but they took pity on us and let us come in.

My husband has always been a orange cat lover.  Of course, there was an orange kitten that caught his eye.  I knew he was coming home with us.

In the corner was a small grey tabby tiger kitten being bullied by that orange kitten.

I have always been a sucker for anyone that needs to be taken care of ~ who needs a Mom & this kitten needed me.

I picked him up and he immediately started to nuzzle my hair and I was hooked ~ he was coming home.

and that made 2.

A week later ~ a co-worker of my husbands had told him about his litter of kittens ~ yep ~ you guessed it ~ and then there were 3.

Cassidy, Sundance & Kid Meow.

Almost 19 years have gone by ~ we have had 2 dogs, 6 cats, a horse, 2 hamsters, and numerous fish. Cassidy watched and accepted as we adopted each new animal.

Cassidy outlived them all.

Cassidy grew up my baby – always sleeping with me – snuggling my hair ~ hiding from most.  Even in the past year when he was stone deaf as soon as he saw me walk in the room, he would meow and then jump up on the foot stool waiting for me to sit down in my chair.

He had been going down hill the past 2 years ~ he no longer was the big massive Tom. He looked his age.  He had become an old man. Skinny, bony, stone deaf, loss of balance, difficulty with his bladder control, and then this past year he started to have kidney failure.  I prayed that one night when he went to sleep he would just not wake up.

Why couldn’t one of my animals pass away peacefully in their sleep without me having to make the life ending decision.

I kept fighting the decision.  I made an appointment a month ago and cancelled it.  I wasn’t ready to let go.

A week ago – I saw him walking across the living room, jumped up to the sofa and walked to the back of the couch to lie down.

He was having trouble lying down. I had been kidding myself.  I kept saying that when I saw that he was suffering I would take him.

It finally hit me.  He was walking and trying to get comfortable lying down.

He looked like he had Fibromyalgia.

I couldn’t kid myself any longer.  I knew how he felt.  I felt every ounce of pain that he had walking, loss of balance, trying to lie down, to  find a way that would give rest and not more pain.

I have had several conversations with others about taking him – there comments, “it was time”, “he is suffering” , “he is in pain”, “it is the right thing to do”.

Even that how “we treat animals better than humans by giving them a peaceful “out” of the pain”.

I don’t want to get into a religious debate as to whether suicide or “euthanizing” is a Sin or a humane way to end suffering.  I am just thinking through my fingers.   I don’t want to debate taking one’s life.  Everyone has the right to their own opinion.  I just want to wonder out loud.  Writing is my way of getting out my pain.

In the same respect I have a Fibromite friend that is suffering.  Her life is HELL.  She is in more pain than anyone should ever have to endure. Her body is failing her and She has given up.

She has even tried to end things, which has landed her in a special “hospital”.  Everyone wants to keep her from doing anything.  Why?  For her? For them?

I dont’ want to see her end her life and in the same breath – I don’t want her to live in this pain.

If we have a pet whom we love and there is nothing more we can do for the pain and suffering, we decide for them that it is “time” for them to die.  We are making that decision. Not some higher power or whatever you believe in.

What gives us the right to decide to end their life?

If we have a family member that has zero quality of life left, that is in pain and suffering ~ We continue to find ways to keep them living. If fact, it is against the law to do anything but make them live.

Why is that?  It is humane to “kill” our animals.  It is considered suicide, murder, a sin when considering a human.

Cassidy and I were in the vet office waiting for the doctor.  He just laid down on the table leaning up against me. Calm.  He has never been so relaxed.

Whether you believe it or not ~  It was almost like he was relieved.  It was humane, just a few seconds and my Cassidy was gone.

I am a Fighter and have many reasons in life to keep fighting.

However, when I am 90 years old and am tired fighting Fibro ~ it might be nice to be with my loved one ~ and fall asleep peacefully.

I am a Fibromyalgia Warrior – Living Life.

Are you a man or mouse?

Are you a man or mouse?

We were instructed at my job this week to read the booklet – “Who Moved My Cheese?” by Dr. Spencer Johnson. If you have read the story this blog may make more sense to you.
I promise if you keep reading – it relates to “This is my live ~ Surviving Fibromyalgia”.
The opening states that sometimes we act like the 4 characters in the story.
The four characters show how they each react differently to change.
Change is the one thing that is inevitable. Our daily routine of going through the motions make us forget that life is constantly changing around us.
Our initial reaction to change is to resist it because we are afraid of the unknown. Then when change happens, we stress out and react or hide.
It is trying to teach us the following: “Quoted from Dr. Spencer Johnson”

  • Change Happens. They Keep Moving The Cheese
  • Anticipate Change. Get Ready For The Cheese To Move
  • Monitor Change. Smell the Cheese Often So You Know When It Is Getting Old.
  • Adapt To Change Quickly. The Quicker You Let Go Of Old Cheese, The Sooner You Can Enjoy New Cheese.
  • Change.Move With The Cheese
  • Enjoy Change.Savor The Adventure And Enjoy The Taste Of New Cheese

Keep reading – I’ll get there….
Our Employer’s told us to write how this story relates to us and our job.
I had several thoughts:
My smarty pants reply was ”Are they trying to tell me that there is better cheese out there and I should go look for a better and different job with more cheese?”
My written reply was that I have been faced with many work changes over the past few years and that though I am one that does not like change. I have learned to adapt and continue to look for new things that I can do to help my workplace.
I wanted to say that I have always been the Character that stayed put and watched the changes occur around him. I have stayed as I have watched good and bad policies come and go, watched both good and bad employee’s leave, seen friends move on to look for their new cheese. They were like Haw. They too were scared but excited with the new change. I stay because I don’t like change. Fear has been the driving factor most of my life. I like comfort.
I have moved a total of 2 times in my life. I have worked 2 jobs in the last 20 years. I will be at my current job for 19 years this June. It is safe to say that I don’t like change.
If you have not read “Who moved the Cheese”. I encourage you to go online and read it: http://www.magnacad.com/Printables/WhoMovedMyCheese.pdf
After you read the story – Ok… stick with me – Here it is… this really does relate to Fibro.
I could not tell them (my Employers) that while reading the story – I was internally screaming – “This guy is getting paid to write this “Inspirational” story”. While writing and re-writing this – I tried verbally to get my thoughts across. All that I could manage was tears while I was explaining it. I feel so strong about the last paragraph. So upset and frustrated at the hidden illness and struggle that is endured by so many. Don’t get me wrong – I understand the purpose of the story. The past 2 years of my life – I have had to work my way from being a person that resists all change like Hem to strive to being a mouse.
I like my other Fibro Friends have no choice. If we do not react like the mice (searching for something new – willing to adapt) then we will not only become like the Character Hem (not willing to change) but much more worse. We will end up not leaving our homes, we will be swallowed up in our pain and our depression. Fibro and it’s evil sidekicks love to surprise us all the time with new symptoms and new diagnosis. We have to live the story. We have to anticipate not only what could happen in a reaction to what we have done but what we have not done.
We have to be ready to change to not find our cheese but to SAVE OUR SPOONS.