It’s been six days since we learned that we’ll never see Milo again. It’s getting a little easier- but the tears still come in waves.

Two days ago I grabbed a package off the porch before coming in.

What’s that? my hubby asked.

“It’s for Milo’s grave.” I replied somberly.

The words came out easily, and sat with me. Hard.

I went out to the back deck and sat, and cried. Milo’s grave I kept hearing. I didn’t want those words to exist. But they did, and I needed to feel sadness, and I did.

After a little bit, I spotted a hawk in a tree at the edge of our yard. I wished it were an eagle. During the pandemic in 2020, I pegged the eagle as my sign from the universe. During my countless walks and times outside, I’ve never seen one around here, and they are spotted fairly regularly. I look, all the time, but still get the feeling that it’s right In front of my face and I’m missing it.

As I was thinking, the hawk flew towards me and made a sharp turn to fly around the side of our house. It came close to the ground, and I thought that was odd and that it must’ve spotted a mouse or something.

About 5-10 minutes later, it came out of nowhere and landed on the top of our wooden swing about 50 feet away. I was in awe, because I’ve never seen a hawk do that here. I had never seen one so close.

It was only there for a matter of seconds, but what it did next made me laugh. It flew off toward the side yard, and was out of sight. Next thing I know, the rude geese who have been loitering were flying away honking angrily. It was funny because we used to sic our dog on those geese. He would chase them, and they’d fly away honking just like that. We realized it wasn’t the smartest thing to encourage our dog to chase wild animals, so we stopped doing that. I silently thanked the hawk for scaring them away.

I saw that hawk, once more that evening. He came down again, and around the side of the house.

It was cool, and while it wasn’t my eagle, I was in awe nevertheless, and so grateful for the gift of the hawk

Miserable May Monday

May 1, 2023

Life’s been a little challenging lately. I think I’m handling it okay, much better than I would have in the past. Work is hard, I mean, like hard. Most of the difficulties have nothing to do with teaching itself. I had a good talk with my mentor today though, that made me feel a ton better. There are a lot of super unhappy people right now, I am not alone, not crazy and not an awful teacher.

Today was one of the hardest.

I was in my last IEP meeting of the school year, and got a text from Hubby asking to call him when I had a minute. That’s unusual, and with his sister being in ICU (same old story…) I felt like I couldn’t wait until the meeting was over. I excused myself and called him back.

He told me they found Milo.

He wasn’t alive. Some poor person found him in their yard and called animal control. They wanted to know if we wanted his body back.

WOAH. I wasn’t expecting that. I tried to wrap my head around what he was saying. Yes, I told him. Tell them to bring him home so we can bury him.

I shook as I waited my turn to talk at the meeting. When it was my turn, I forgot about Milo. After the meeting it was almost time to go home. I got caught up on my daily stuff and was able to not think about it. However, when I got into the car, it was impossible to hold in my emotions.

I just got home not long ago, and plan to cry all night. We will bury him tonight, and have a ceremony sometime tomorrow or this week when we can all be together. My oldest gave me the biggest hug when I got home, but then had to leave for work. He’s struggling too. I reassured him that it’s easier to be at work.

I’m comforted knowing that he’s not suffering. Every cold day, every rainy or snowy day, I wouldn’t be able to escape worrisome thoughts about him and where he might be, and if he’s wet, cold, hungry, etc.

I’m happy when I think of him rejoicing at the rainbow bridge, with his old bestie, Boss.

Milo and Boss would cuddle like crazy, all the time. Milo always tried that with Jules, but Jules wasn’t very interested and would often get up and walk away if Milo tried to spoon with him.

Mostly, though, I just feel sadness and guilt. So much of it. It could have been prevented and that thought just won’t escape my conscious. Ugh.

I’m sorry Milo. Sorry that we failed you. Give Bossie a big hug & kiss from us ❤️❤️❤️

Duality- Hope and Dread

I’m still struggling with our cat, Milo, who has been lost for two weeks now.

In my last post, I referred to a story about a boy, lost in the mountains who was never seen alive again. The night he was lost, it poured and flooded, and I simply can’t imagine what his family was going through.

I bring this up, because I related it to how I felt about my cat, lost while it’s severely storming outside. I realized after the fact, that me comparing my lost cat to a lost child could be very insensitive. That wasn’t my intention, at all. While my pets are most certainly, my “furbabies,” my point was more like, geez if losing a pet feels this desperate and sad, how could you not die of a broken heart after losing a child? I simply could not imagine, for one second, and very grateful that I haven’t lived it.

Yesterday was Monday, and it was back to work after spring break. The whole day was just off. The rain continued, and in the morning, before work, I learned that we don’t have Good Friday off this week- I was banking on a four day week- boo! Work was okay, but I didn’t sleep well- only a couple of hours- so I wasn’t at all peppy like usual. Also I had an online meeting in the morning, and the parent’s smoke detector battery alarm was chirping for the entire hour. I left the meeting with a nagging headache, and it lasted the day.

By the time I got home, I just wanted to surrender, lol. Everytime during the weekend, or yesterday, that I let my mind wander to Milo, I would begin to cry. I knew that I really just needed a good cry session, but didn’t want to get my contacts messed up and my face all swollen. But I desperately needed to get out my angst.

I decided to meditate. I missed my morning session, and wanted to see if I could pick up any signs or messages about Milo. I set my intentions and then my timer.

I went to Crystal Cave, via the river in a kayak to the portage. There were animals in the river with me, and I began to cry.

My mom was at the cave. The messages I received from her weren’t spoken words, more like thoughts.

What the heck? Why?

Her message in a nutshell: This is what you’ve been training for. You knew that something hard is going to come along, and you wondered how you’d handle it with your spiritual growth (my sister and I do often talk about this). You know this is life, it’s full of ups and downs and try to focus on the big picture.

Tears ran down my cheeks the entire time.

I came to a realization during this time. I had been wanting to find Milo alive, or not at all. I couldn’t bear the thought of finding out that he’s gone, forever. I had thought about this many times since he left. I decided that I truly didn’t want to know if he dies or died. I want him home alive, or would rather spend the rest of time wondering what happened to him. I needed to hold onto that hope.

Well, I knew in my heart, that that’s not really healthy. I had a good talk with my mom and the Universe and declared that I need closure, and that I’m ready. Ready to find out the truth, and accept it. It felt good to let the resistance I had go. This felt significant- and I truly expected to find him immediately after- either dead or alive.

“Let’s go to the meadow. Please show me something happy. Something that will make me happy.” I begged my mom.

The cave is dark, but there’s a hallway with a door. And outside the door is the most magnificent meadow filled with colorful flowers.

We went to the meadow and I looked around. I noticed animals, everywhere. It was as if all the flowers turned to animals. I didn’t notice if they were dogs, cats, rabbits, etc. I guess I just saw animal souls, maybe. But it did make me happy, but it also made the tears run down faster.

I finished up and was just thinking when I heard hubby come up from downstairs. I wiped my face and wondered if he’d notice.

“You look tired.” He said, after bending down to kiss me as I sat on the couch (I love that he does this. If he forgets, when he realizes later in the evening- he says, “I didn’t get to kiss you today.”).

“I just meditated and cried the whole time.” I answered.

“I’m sorry.” he responded.

“It’s okay. It was good.” and then, wondering how crazy he thinks I am, followed up with “I talked to your grandma last week..” (she’s been dead since 2002). He didn’t seem to think much of it.

Then I stood up and hugged him and then just cried. It was inevitable. I was, and am so incredibly grateful to have a partner who loves and accepts me with all my quirks- and loves me with open arms (literally).

All of it felt profound, and I went to bed feeling lighter.

I’m still sad about Milo, that will never change. But I’ll try to focus on the good things, and will try to remain hopeful.

Milo come home to us!! We need you home 😿

Bad Caturday

It’s days like today that are the worst, along with last night.

I came across a story a few months ago, about a young child lost in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. My memory is awful- so some of this might be incorrect information, so I apologize if that’s the case.

He was with his family and wandered off a little too far. His dad frantically searched, and more people joined in, but the child was never found. The night he went missing, it poured and there was flooding in the area. I thought that was so sad, and couldn’t imagine having a child lost and alone out in weather like that, let alone lost at all.

Last night it poured, huge raindrops illuminated in super bright lightning strikes, followed by the loudest of thunder.

I couldn’t stop wondering about Milo- hoping he had shelter. There was so much rain, I worried about him keeping dry. And the thunder.. since Milo had been found and brought back home when he went missing before, he seems to really hate loud noises. I don’t think he was like that before he got lost in 2014. He must’ve been absolutely terrified of the thunder last night- and again today. I hope that he found a person to take him in.

His CT scan appointment is on Wednesday, four days from now. I called the clinic on Friday to cancel. I wanted to give them enough time to fill the spot, with hopefully someone on the cancellation list, like we once were. When I explained why I was cancelling, she asked if I was sure I didn’t want to wait to see if he came home. I told her that it would be great to have the weekend, and that I’d call on Monday.

I hated to make that call, and was so grateful that we get a few more days of hope. That’s a little good news at least.

If you’re reading this, please send prayers, positive thoughts and vibes, visualizations, etc my way! There is definitely power in prayer (or thoughts) !

Milo come home!

Come home Milo!

Peaceful Mornings

It’s Friday morning, 4 o’clock hour, and I’m sleepless once again.

I woke up to go to the bathroom and ran into my oldest in the hallway- this was around 3:30am.

He said he heard a distinct Milo meow outside his bedroom window around 2:30, and had been calling for him since. We had set out clothes and used kitty litter around the yard yesterday- and we were feeling hopeful that maybe he’d find his way home in the calm of the night.

I couldn’t sleep after that, and walked the yard with a flashlight- with no luck.

On the bright side, I’m not feeling too bummed about being up so early again. I had a great morning yesterday! After I wrote in here, I had the best workout I’ve had in over 6 months, and that was me not wanting to work out at all. I was so glad I got on the bike- it felt good to ride 7 miles before work. Riding my bike one mile to work will be a piece of cake 🙂

I also had time to meditate- although it wasn’t a great session. I’ve been meditating daily for several months now, but haven’t had very good sessions where I feel in a trance. I’m either completely conscious- or I tend to fall asleep. Last weekend, after my friend visited- I meditated in the afternoon/evening. I was very tired from staying up so late, but I was also holding my coffee cup (it was an impromptu meditation session) – which I think prevented me from falling asleep and helped me achieve more of a trance state.

For the first time in awhile, it was a good session. I went to Crystal Cave, and my mom and Anthony’s grandma (who passed while on a cruise in 2002) were there. They were getting on my case about not visiting our parents more (his and my dad/stepmom). Then Anthony’s young cousin showed up. I asked him if he had a message and he said to tell his sister that he is taking care of all her passed pets (she loves her pets!).

It made me think that maybe I should meditate later in the day instead of first thing. Yesterday I did both, but my afternoon session wasn’t great.

I had a pretty good day at work. The kids were extra wound up, and I was kind of cranky, but I ended up emailing my principal with my schedule and the issues I am having. I told her I planned to reach out to my boss- but didn’t want to blindside her. It’s a start and it feels good.

Today is not only Friday, but it’s the Friday before Spring break! AND.. and Parkview it happens to be pajama day, which I intend to take full advantage of! I’m even bringing my slippers. I don’t always participate in pj day, but today it’s happening.

On a side note, I was thinking about the upcoming summer and wondering if I’ll be productive or not. I began to think of the summer of 2020 and how magically awesome it was. I heard a song, which reminded me- that’s what got me thinking. It was amazing, but why weren’t the summers after, and how do I make this coming summer more like 2020?

In 2021, I was preparing for my son and nephews graduation party. I did a ton of work, especially outside. It was great to feel productive and get things done outside, but I think that took most of my summer. The party was at the end of July and by August, I’m already in back-to-school mode- so when that party was over, so was my summer it seemed.

In 2022, I slept. My hands were so sore, I think I weeded around the pond once. I spent the summer trying to heal with diet changes, and just got worse and worse. By the time school started, I could hardly get up off the ground. My legs were stiff, swollen, and horribly painful.

Last week I almost cried at an IEP meeting, and nearly made the mom cry. It was for that little boy who I get off the bus everyday- the one who struggles walking. The team began talking about how amazing and inspiring this child is.

I told mom how sick and immobile I was in the fall- and how her little boy changed my entire outlook. And that was no exaggeration.

But my thoughts about summer is that right now 2023 is a blank slate. How do I want it to look? What a great prospect! I thought hard about this yesterday. I definitely want to write- as much as I can- and then just household chores will keep me busy- especially outside. We bought the acre lot next door a few months ago, so I’m excited to figure out what we’ll do with it and clean it up.

I feel like I could be totally content staying home all summer long and doing nothing but writing, swimming/bike riding/other leisure activities and fixing up/maintaining the house. It sounds absolutely perfect, actually.

When I first got sober, it was the summertime, and I would sometimes think of my home as a sober retreat. It included all the good stuff- spiritual work, recovery work, grounding while gardening outside, meditating in the garden, wholesome food, etc. My wish for 2023 reminds me of a sober retreat. I can’t think of a better way to spend summer vacation. Pretty hilarious for a girl who lived for drinking all summer- and the thought of a sober summer would scare me away from sobriety- until I learned and experienced the truth (that alcohol is a big, fat liar).

This was supposed to be a quick update- but I keep getting off track. It’s after 5:00 now, and I’m deciding if I want to work out or not. I think not. I think I’ll make some pancakes- or something else hardy to eat because I’m feeling famished.

Thanks for listening to my rambles!

Have a great Friday everyone- happy weekend!

Ailing #Caturday

It’s been one hell of a week.

Milo stopped eating early in the week. My oldest took him back to the vet on Tuesday, who said that he’s lost two pounds these past few weeks and that he needed to go to a specialist for a cat scan (haha) ASAP. She also said that it would take several weeks to get an appointment.

I called around early Wednesday and the soonest he can be seen is November 9th. I knew he wouldn’t live until then. I messaged my cat sitter, who works at the vet I used to work at, to see if she had any ideas. She made arrangements for us to bring Milo to that clinic to see if there’s anything they could do.

By this time he was refusing all food. But acting hungry, which was heartbreaking.

The doctor said that the specialist could take him and would put him on iv fluids and maybe a stomach tube put in. No one can do a cat scan until next week, so he would just be hospitalized, hopefully getting stronger in case he needs surgery. It would be $4,000-6,000.

I was going to take him after getting off work, but none of it felt right. Sunshine went into the hospital and never came home-and so did Chloe. I didn’t want to spend that amount of money with so many unknowns.

I called the clinic back and told them that we would like to take care of him from home while we wait to hopefully get a sooner appointment for a scan to see what’s going on. They prescribed him steroids that would hopefully calm whatever is going on in his nose down, and stimulate his appetite.

That was Thursday and I’m so happy to report that Milo is doing much better and he is eating very well.

Fast forward to Friday evening. I am exhausted. I’ve woken up around the 4am hour for 3 days this week and wasn’t able to get back to sleep. Milo is heavily on my mind, and I’m preparing myself in case he doesn’t pull through. It’s a busy weekend. I have an 8am dentist appointment on Saturday, youngest is having a small birthday get together, so we had to clean and get a cake/snacks, have a few hours of work to do and a retirement party on Sunday.

But, I’m feeling pretty good because it’s the weekend and I actually took Jules for a walk after work, our first in a few weeks because I’ve been so painful.

So, I’m relaxing, with my feet on my earthing pad and talking to Hubby about whether we should order or make dinner.

Zoe walks in and I pet her only to discover a big lump on her back. “Oh, it’s okay!” my boys say. “It’s just a mat of fur, we couldn’t get it out.” (they sometimes brush her mats out). The lump I felt definitely felt ominous.

I felt again, and felt matted fur. I shifted it, and in doing so, my fingers got wet with extremely stinky liquid. I knew immediately that it was an abscess 😢

It must’ve annoyed her, because she was in a sad state afterwards, running as if she were trying to run from the wound.

Since it was 6pm on a Friday, her regular vet couldn’t see her. I took her to the local emergency, which is like a mile away, and called from the parking lot.

“Sorry, we can’t see your cat.” She then explained that they are at capacity with ill pets and currently a 6-8 hour wait to get in.

Never, ever have I felt such desperation. I called the next nearest one, who luckily could see her, with only a 2-3 hour wait.

We were there the full 3 hours. Now she has a shaved back and the wound looks like ground beef it is so disgusting. I’m not getting bothered by it though, I’m used to these abscesses now. The vet said she thinks she will heal up just fine, but it’s been there for awhile. I SO hope it heals, unlike the last time when her fever kept getting higher and finally they just had to open her up and clean out the big old wound from her chest into her armpit. She came home with a drain tube then, but she healed good.

I’m proud of how far I’ve come with my mentality, because I’ve spent probably over 90% of my moments feeling grateful this week, despite the hardships.

When I got to the emergency clinic, it didn’t take long for the technician to put us in a room. I was feeling optimistic, but defeated. When we got settled, the tech says, “Hey weren’t you my old babysitter?” I thought it was probably a mistake because I only really had one (consistent) babysitting job.

I looked up to see a grown up version of a little girl I used to know. We hugged and caught up. She was the oldest child of the family that I used to babysit often. It was sooooooo nice at that moment to see a friendly and familiar face– and I felt grateful.

We had to give Zoe her antibiotic last night, and since we didn’t get home till well after 10, we didn’t give it until after midnight.

It’s 1am on a Saturday night and hubby and I are on the floor trying to coax this cat to let me medicate her. Milo comes walking through, doing his loud breathing/wheezing (it’s not constant).

We looked at each other and just started laughing at our predicament. I was so grateful for him, and his attitude. While I was at the clinic, he brought me dinner and sat with me for the last hour. He mentioned that he was glad we got her in that night, even though it would probably cost twice as much and that it was worth it. I was so grateful for him then too, and grateful that he wasn’t more like my dad was when I was growing up. He did not like my mom to spend money on the pets!

Now it’s Saturday, and things are going remarkably well.

I’ve gotten both Zoe and Milo to take their meds with baby food 👏👏👏

Milo’s breathing is noticeably more quiet, he seems to be feeling well and is pigging out. Zoe is acting okay too, and I’m just so glad she ate her meds.

AND… guess what!! I’m on day 3 of NO Motrin, Tylenol or any NSAID. I’ve been trying to get off motrin for like a year so this is HUGE.

I started Nettle Leaf a couple weeks back and wondering if that’s making a big difference for me. Either way, I am ecstatic!

I can see a huge difference of the effects of these life stressors. I was pretty spiritually healthy the last time Zoe had an abscess, but gosh, I was so worried and frantic. It’s different now. Am I worried? A little bit- I want her to heal, but I’m certainly not preoccupied with fearful thoughts that she won’t. That’s probably something that I never could have said before.

Maybe I’m becoming comfortable with death, and in doing so can finally live my life feeling free.

Day #1305