Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The happy and the sad

Let's start with the happy, shall we? Steve the cat's follow-up lab results came back negative for both FeLV and FIV! Yay!!! (You can't see it, but I'm doing a happy dance.) I'm so happy about the results that I didn't even shriek at the staff at the vet's office--who didn't bother to call and tell me the results, which, according to the report they faxed me, had been in since FRIDAY. I will be mentioning this to my vet the next time I talk to her, you may be sure.

Of course, now the difficult part will be in not getting too attached to Mr. Steve while I search for a home for him. But I've already notified the rescue group that was going to take him before, and we'll be able to show him as planned. I'm going to try continuing to foster him in my garage for a while, and we'll see how it goes. BUT I DON'T HAVE TO KILL HIM!! That was me screaming with delirious joy. While doing a happy dance.

I really needed some good news, as yesterday was quite an emotional roller coaster. I went to my hometown for the funeral of the father of one of my good friends in college. (Did you get that?) There were three of us who were inseparable my first couple of years in college, and though we drifted apart as time went on, as sometimes happens, we were still in at least sporadic contact. Dennis moved to Texas several years ago; Amy and I both ended up living in Tulsa, so we see each from time to time, as our busy schedules allow. Amy called this weekend, her mother having just called to tell her about Dennis's father. My mother had made the same phone call to me a little earlier. We decided we needed to go to the funeral. Dennis hadn't contacted either of us, but we knew he would be glad to see us. So we went.

It was a little surreal. It occurred to me that I couldn't even remember the last time the three of us had been together...we think it must have been sometime around 1984. We'd all seen each other separately, but not together. Dennis looked exhausted, and devastated, and he just grabbed us in a big hug and sobbed. (He lost his mother several years ago, so he's now parentless.) We stood that way for a while, and it felt so strange, and yet...so familiar.

The three of us were SO entwined in each other's lives back then. We did everything together. But times change, and people change and...I don't even know where I'm going with this. It was so good to see him, and he was so touched to see us. It's been so long since he's lived in that town that we were really the only people there for HIM, you know? It felt good...and it simultaneously made me sad. What happened to those three bright-eyed young things? When did we get to be middle-aged? Why didn't we stay in better touch? How could we have been so close, and then...not been? It was both sweetly sentimental and weirdly nostalgic. We agreed that we needed to have another reunion soon, and under happier circumstances, and Amy and I drove back home.

And I just felt unsettled for the rest of the day. The weird nostalgic feelings, of course. The pain of seeing someone you care about in pain. And also...it just freaks me out a little that my contemporaries are starting to lose their parents. This was the third good friend in the last year to lose his second parent. It forces you, like it or not, to start imagining your own parents as...mortal. Nooooooooooo!!!!! I refuse to allow it! Fortunately, my own parents are still relatively young and basically in good health, but someday...I don't want to think about it. And yet, I do. Every time I see that look of devastation on a friend's face, I do.

So last night I did my work-out, and then moved on to my yoga video, and I was feeling pretty good when, during the final relaxation pose, tears just started pouring down my face. I wasn't even really crying, per se...it's like I was just...leaking. Big, slow-rolling, cinematic Demi Moore-in-"Ghost"-tears. It was a little freaky. I wiped the tears away, and thought I was fine.

A few minutes later I was talking to New Guy on the phone, comparing notes on our days, and here they came again! Poor New Guy. I think it freaked him out a little. Hell, it freaked ME out a little. I didn't mean to be crying, but I just couldn't stop. He gave me a "hug over the phone" and told me to do something nice for myself, and he'd call me back later.

Do something nice for myself, I thought...okay, maybe I'll have some of that ice cream in the freezer. But wait, before I do, sniff, sniff...what's that smell? "That" was the smell that results when a cat has diarrhea on the throw rug OUTSIDE the litter box. That's what "that" was.

And you know what? I just started to laugh. That is SO my life. I ask for ice cream, and the universe hands me shit. But I figured if I can laugh at cat shit...I'm going to be okay. So I cleaned up the mess, and then I had the ice cream.

YES, I washed my hands well in between...what kind of crazy cat lady do you take me for? Heh.


stefanie said...

I'm sorry to hear about your friend's father. And I wouldn't worry about having the mini-breakdown on the phone with New Guy. Him seeing/hearing you cry is an important milestone, I say. And he sounds like it handled it just fine. :-)

Stinkypaw said...

Sorry to read about your friend's father. How weird that while you were remembering your friendship and past times, I was doing the same with a friend who lost her grandmother, who actually took care of her since her mom died she was just a toddler. Strange...

Happy to see that you can make ice cream with the shit that you've been sent! Good for you! ;-)

L Sass said...

You are such a good friend. There is nothing like seeing a random loved one walk through the doors at a wake / funeral, even though you never called them or asked them to come. It's like a reminder of all the good and love in the world all at once, when you need it the most.

gorillabuns said...

if "the new guy" can withstand sorrow and loss, he's a keeper.

never apologize for feeling reality.

most do not.

Whiskeymarie said...

"I ask for ice cream, and the universe hands me shit."

Funniest line I've heard in a long time.
Sorry for the downer day, glad you could find something good in it...

lizgwiz said...

stef, he did handle it well. As well as anyone can handle an irrational, weeping (and oh yeah...on my period) woman over the phone. Hee.

stinky, shit ice cream--yum! ;)

lsass, I remember looking up at my grandmother's funeral and seeing my best friend from high school, and you're right...it was so moving.

gorillabuns, I definitely think he's a keeper. Now we just have to make sure he thinks I'M one, too. ;)

whiskey, I figure I'll know I've really lost my grip if I ever forget how to laugh. It IS the best medicine!