Where, oh where, did 2014 go? I don’t know if I should blame work or what, but the year really flew by. There were some notable experiences — attended my first writer’s conference; went to my first author signing; attempted (and “won”) NaNoWriMo for the first time. Lots of good things!
Unfortunately, our year concluded in a bad way. [Warning, heavy paragraphs ahead.]
Shortly after NaNo ended, we became concerned about Commodore. He acted fine, but would barely eat. After several days he wouldn’t touch his normal dry food. We bought three or four different wet foods (to start) trying to entice him to eat. He’d work down maybe half a small can and then stop. We knew something was wrong, just didn’t realize how bad it was for cats not to eat.
The short version of the story* is that Commodore’s FeLV likely went from regressive to progressive, setting off Hepatic Lipidosis (fatty liver) and/or something worse like lymphoma. For two weeks we force-fed him four to five times a day and gave him a steroid, trying to reverse the fatty liver and slow down the FeLV. We are happy that one of those weeks was a good one; his energy picked up, he became interested again in going outside, and he ate more treats. But despite our best efforts, the sickness prevailed. On December 28, we chose to help Commodore across the rainbow bridge.
It is, and will be for some time, hard to talk about him. Hard to glance at his tower in my study, now empty save for a pile of his toys. Hard to pull into the driveway and not see him sunning in the study window. Hard not to see him hobbling down the hall to meet us when we come home for lunch. To put it simply, he was a glorious cat and is sorely missed.
Tomorrow we’re going up to my parents’ farmland in Virginia for a week as our holiday vacation. We’re going to bury Commodore’s ashes somewhere with lots of trees and birdsong, since he was an outdoor cat at heart.
On a happier note, my family will all be together for the first time in a year. We get to meet my older brother’s girlfriend. We can disconnect a little from the crazy stress of 2014 and re-balance for the new year. While there, I’ll be working on the next post. Suffice to say it should have a sunnier tone. I do still want to talk about NaNo. It was a crazy ride, especially the last ten days or so. Book reviews will be coming too.
Most of the New Year goals I made in years past fizzled. I originally didn’t plan on having goals this year, but Commodore changed that. For 2015, I want to spend more time with family, friends, and our two dogs. I want to take a smarter approach to writing, so that more of my time is spent with those I love instead of wasting it on random websites. I also want to blog more about the books that move me, whether for good reasons or bad. I want to volunteer, or just give back in some way to the rescue that helped us out so much with our pirate cat.
What about you guys? What are your 2015 goals? What matters to YOU this year?
* If anyone wants the long story of what happened and our care plan, I’ll be more than happy to post it. I just didn’t want to drag down the whole post with giant blocks of text over the specifics.