Friday, March 30, 2012

Friends Friday

Dedicating today's post to Cosmo who was my brother and friend for 11 years (mom had him for 14 years but I have only been around for 11 of them years).  Miss ya buddy!

Cosmo in his favorite spot... the top of the recliner. 
Didn't matter if I wasn't sitting in it or not, he was always sitting on top!

One of our favorite activities together... 

Mom wanted to post this article about how losing a pet can hurt as much as losing a relative.  I couldn't agree more!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for all my anipals and hooman friends pulling for me while I recover from my owies suffered in the fire.  The toys, treats and support has meant so much to me and mom!

Speaking of mom, I tend to forget that even though she wasn't injured in the fire that it was a traumatizing experience for her too.  Yesterday was a tough day.  Most days she has kept it together probably for my benefit but last night she had leaky eyes.  Although I know she likes to go visit the kitties and puppies at the animal shelter I think it's hard for her.  We both really miss older brother Cosmo.  I know she wishes she would have been home the night of the fire and maybe I wouldn't have been injured and Cosmo will still be with us.  Some days that's harder on her than others.  I try to snuggle up with her as much as possible and let her hear me purr to let her know it's going to be okay!  I'm not ready for a new brother or sister and I am pretty sure mom isn't either.  That's okay with me though.  I am enjoying all the attention being the only kitty at home!  I didn't appreciate mom rolling over on me last night though!  She got an emergency phone call at 1:30am and tried to avoid rolling on me to get up to answer the phone but I got in the way.  Normally I would think it's funny that I got in the way but not last night.  I'm not sure who it hurt more... me for my owies or her when she strained her back!  Sorry mom!  I tried not to laugh when she barked at the person on the phone, "why are you waking me up at 1:30am?"  I didn't laugh when she looked out the window wondering where the fire was.  It wasn't a fire but rather a friend had a medical emergency.  Can't help but wonder how long the memory of the fire is going to be so painful.  Don't like seeing mom with leaky eyes.  Mom visited friend in hospital and friend is going to be okay.  Doesn't hurt to say a prayer though.  I heard mom saying a prayer for her friend and me.  Don't know who she is talking to but someone must be listening because I am getting better everyday and am willing to bet her friend will too!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Van Gogh?

I lost part of my ear last night. It doesn't look too bad though...

Friday, March 23, 2012

1 Month Anniversary...Look How Much I Have Improved!

Today is the one month mark from the fire.  Just wanted to show off how much I have improved!

February 24, 2012 at Mission MedVet

March 22, 2012 at home

I am looking GREAT!!!  Thanks everyone for all the LUV!!!

Mischievous Friday

I was on the table again last night and told mom I wasn't getting off! He, he...

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Presents, presents and more presents...

Mom's way behind on her thank you notes but she wanted to let everyone know how grateful she is for all the luv! I'm thankful for all the toys! And Treats!!! Nom, nom, nom...

4 Week follow up visit

Whew am I tired from my visit at the VET. Got a good report though. Whiskers are growing back, fur's starting to grow in where burns are. May not get fur in all burn spots but getting it above my eyes. Time will tell how well I heal. Another visit to VET in 2 weeks.

Mom and friend Amy got spooked again last night when fire truck and police car came screaming in lights and sirens. Emergency wasn't a fire and wasn't in either of our buildings but scared them anyway. Think they may be spooked by sirens for a little while. It's been 4 weeks since fire #1 and 2 weeks since fire #2. Recovery is not quick...

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


I'ze got caught on the table last night, oops!

But I am so handsome mom didn't mind......  :)

(Editors note... Mom's all caught up as much as she could get us on the details of the fire and my progress.  Posts from today moving forward are real time posts rather than from the past 3 weeks.)

Missing brother Cosmo

Favorite activity with Cosmo... (this was a few months ago)

Looking good!

I pawed the scab off my nose today (Saturday March 17, 2012). It's looking good though! Don't you think?

And if you notice... that's my favorite mat to lay on.  Yep, mom's a jayhawk fan.  It's okay, I am too!

Looking better everyday...

Just wanted to post a few pics showing my progress...

March 11, 2012

My owwies are healing.  Mom can't resist taking pics of me, i'ze so handsome!

Me playing in a bag on March 12, 2012...

Exploring the apartment... March 13, 2012
I was exploring the new home today for really the first time since coming home.  I discovered this nice comfy chair and woo hoo there's a fan in this home too!  I like sitting and watching the blades go round and round...

Cats and Trauma

Stealing er.. Borrowing another post from my friends Ryker'z Boyz

Cats and Trauma

I ended Friday's post with the question: Can Sebastian and CJ experience trauma?

The answer, of course, is yes.

In the very excellent book, "Animals Make Us Human," Temple Grandin states that cats can exhibit high levels of OCD-like behavior triggered by anxiety and fear. This stems in part from the fact that cats tend to be very set in their ways, much more so than dogs, and don't always adapt well to new circumstances. They can go from calm to terrified in seconds -- she says it's because cats have very small frontal lobes, the part of the brain which functions as the "brakes" for emotions.

Listen to this:
"Cats get intensely attached to their homes, too. ... (they) can be obsessive about their surroundings ... A man told me that his indoor cat notices every tiny little change in the environment and will stand by a dripping faucet until someone comes and turns it off."

Now lay that template over what Sebastian and CJ have experienced in the past two weeks. Considering what they've gone through, it's really amazing they're adjusting so well to their new environments.

Testament, I think, to the great love and care their humans have given them.

Ironically, the book, "Animals Make Us Human" is the only book remaining from Amy's library. She had loaned it to me to read. I'm looking at the sweet face of a tabby cat right now, staring out from a book plate on the inside cover: "From the library of Amy Palmer."
Once again, to read the entire post with comments please visit click here Ryker'z Boyz. 


March 8... Two Weeks Post Fire

March 8, 2012 is 2 weeks post fire.  I'm going to borrow a post from Ryker'z Boyz because it had some really good information:

The Shawnee Fire: Two Weeks and Counting

Even though the Shawnee fire “two week mark” technically was last night, daybreak that following morning saw firefighters still fighting the fire. (Did you know they kept pouring water on that building for three days before they were convinced it was safe to withdraw?)

Thanks in part to the “fast food” mentality of a society addicted to 24/7 news and the Next Breaking Thing, most have forgotten this tragedy and moved on with life.
But when a crisis of this magnitude strikes you, two weeks is barely enough time to begin the healing process.

Three separate incidents that both Kathi and Amy told me about recently caused me to seek out a friend and ask her for an article on trauma. Here’s what happened:

Friday after the fire, Amy and Lee stepped away from the apartment complex for a quick bite to eat when a fire truck raced past their location. The minute she heard the sirens, Amy’s heart started to pound and she started to shake. Trauma.

This past Sunday night, around 11 PM, a fire truck comes racing into the apartment complex, lights flashing and siren screaming. It stops at the building Amy now lives in. It was responding to a medical emergency, not a fire. Still.
In Kathi's words, "my heart's about to jump out of my chest." All thoughts of sleep - banished. Trauma.

Amy & Kathi:
2 AM, Wednesday morning. Fire trucks yet again race into the complex. This time they stop at Kathi's new apartment building. And this time, it is a fire. Kathi grabs CJ and races to Amy's. Kathi tells reporters, "the memory of seeing the building go up in flames - it's still too raw." Neither one can sleep that night, nerves on edge. Trauma.
Who wouldn’t respond that way, given the circumstances?
The friend I reached out to is Marla Swoboda, then VP of Development for Wayside Waifs. Marla recently invited her sister Jana, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, to fly in to KC to speak with us about Compassion Fatigue. During her very informative talk, she briefly touched on how trauma can impact our lives.

I asked Marla if Jana had any articles on the topic and Jana graciously forwarded this link to two great articles on her blog: one on anxiety, one on PTSD. I'm not suggesting Amy or Kathi have PTSD -- but the general concepts could apply to this situation.

Here’s a brief excerpt from the first article:
"The brain is great at learning what scares it. Danger memories can get hard-wired to provide a quick spill of chemicals that ideally would serve us well-- to get us the hell out of dodge, or help us fight off our attacker.

Brain is not particularly selective in what gets filed, which can result in some strange associations we may not even know exist. For example, if you're in a car wreck, Brain may file away not only screeching tires and breaking glass. You might find yourself also getting panicky feelings (the emotional interpretation of all those chemicals coming to fore) when you pass white Hondas, or that particular intersection. That one's easy to connect, but while you might not have noticed what was on the radio, Brain could have, and you may not understand why your heart races every time that Lady Gaga song plays."
The articles are excellently written and informative. Perhaps they will provide insight, or just a bit of sensitivity, towards two friends who are continuing to work through an especially difficult situation.
If you’re interested, I’d encourage you to click over and read the articles. Who knows? You may have reason to put this information to good use some day in the future.

Can Sebastian and CJ suffer from PTSD? We’ll take a look at that on Sunday!
To read the full blog from March 9, 2012 click here:  Ryker'z Boyz.  Thanks Ryker'z Boyz for letting me steal... er borrow!  (Guess I should have asked huh?)

Monday, March 19, 2012

A little humor...

Mom was trying to be funny and posted this pic to her facebook page on March 8, 2012.

Is this a drawing of me???  Maybe mom should have accepted that scholarship to art school after all!

Day after second fire...

I'm pooped after last nights scare...

(March 7, 2012)

On a positive note... I had my checkup at VET yesterday and he thinks I'm looking great!  Of course I am, I'm a handsome boy!  But am I getting better?  Yep... my owwies are healing.  I don't like the white stuff mom keeps putting on me but doc says it's helping so I guess I'll try not to paw it off quite so fast after she puts it on.  Doc said it's okay for me to paw it off though.  Says its not harmful to me...  

Sunday, March 18, 2012

A Second FIre...

March 7, 2012 mom and I were awakened about 1:30am to the sound of the building alarm and neighbors yelling fire... Mom jumped up, got dressed, grabbed me and tried to put me in the carrier. I didn't want to get in so she tipped it on it's side and dumped me in head first. I wasn't happy and tried to get out but mom got the door shut.

Mom grabbed some stuff and out we went, down the stairs and to the car. We didn't go far though and mom grabbed the carrier and this time we went upstairs in a different building. Once inside the apt, mom opened the carrier door so I could come out. I slowly came out of the carrier and sniffed my way around while mom talked with another hooman. Turns out we were at mom's friend Amy & Lees apartment. Their furry friends Dottie the guinea pig and Sebastian the kitty were out of the way so I could explore.

We stayed there for a while until we learned we would be able to return to our home. Our new home was not damaged in the fire but would smell like smoke for a few days. Thank you Sebastian for the bed! Seb didn't care for a new bed he got after he lost it in the first fire so he donated it to me.

Before we headed back to our pad a man with a camera talked to mom. I made sure to meow so that I got attention. Mom says I looked handsome on camera. Of course I do!

I feel sorry for those boys who started the second fire. Mom's pretty mad! Pretty sure she will kick their ass if she gets the chance! She was shaken up and I was too...

A helping hand... er blog.

Purrs and tail wags to Lisa Richman for being an awesome friend to mom & me and Amy Palmer & Hubby Lee!  As soon as Lisa learned about the fire she started the ball rolling on getting prayers and much needed support for mom/me & Amy/Lee/Sebastian/Dottie from postings on facebook to blogging to encouraging those that could consider giving by donating to ChipIn accounts set up for both families.  I read somewhere that Lisa wanted to "Pay it Forward".  Lisa, you did more than that, I know we all are so grateful!  Thank you!  Gentle nose taps and pawhugs for all that you have done!!!

Going home to NEW home...

Day 3 at pet hospital and as nice as everyone is, I'm tired of being here. Mom came to visit and this time says we are going home! Yay!

I'm given a dose of meds which I try to spit out and then I'm loaded in to same carrier I was brought in a few days ago.

After mom talks with woman in white coat we head out to the car. Mom drives slower this time. I guess she wasn't as hurried this time like she was the night she brought me here.

We get to our destination and mom unloads me from the car. We then go up a flight of stairs and mom says we're home. Huh? We've never gone up stairs to get home before! Mom opens the carrier and I don't want to come out. Mom finally tips the carrier a little so I have to come out. I don't know where I am. It looks a little familiar but not really. I go to the kitchen to my safe place... the counter.

I wouldn't move from this spot until the following night. Mom put my food and water up on the counter so I would eat. I didn't want to eat or drink but mom encouraged me too so I ate a little to please her. I meowed until mom figured out I needed to potty. She picked me up and put me on the floor so I could use the kitty box which was now in the kitchen. When I was done doing my business I meowed and meowed until mom put me back on the counter.

The following day I still wouldn't get off the counter. When it was bed time mom picked me up and took me to bed with her. I was scared at first but settled in for the night. I woke her up in the morning with my purrin. She thought I was purrin to show my love but really I was hungry. Don't tell her that though!


Mom came to see me today. She was hoping to take me home but I wasn't feeling as good today as yesterday. My owwies were hurting more and I wasn't eating as much. There was good news though. My lungs were clear and I hadn't developed an illness they called pneumonia. Mom would be able to take me home soon as long as she was comfortable giving me meds. My mom has healthcare background so giving me meds wouldn't be a problem.

Mom said we would be going to a new home... Whatever that means. She says our old home no longer exists, not even the building. It was still there when I ran out of it but I don't want to go back in anyway...

The next day...

Mom came to see me this morning. She got good news. I was eating, going potty and let the humans wearing scrubs pet me. They really like me and kept checking on me all through the night. Mom didn't cry today but kept saying sorry and that I would get better. Mom told me that lots of people and anipals were praying for me to heal quickly. Aww...thanks everyone!

The night my life changed forever...

Feb 23, 2012 life as I knew it changed forever... Mom had just fed brother Cosmo and I dinner and then left for training at hospital. Not much later the floor got hot, smoke filled the apartment and mom wasn't home to help get Cosmo and I out safely. I don't know what happened to brother Cosmo but I ran out when policemen kicked in the door.

I was found running away from apartment. Strange man picked me up and carried me to clubhouse where woman put mask on my face. I was in pain so I tried to fight the mask off. Before long mom appeared and tried to reassure me that I would be okay. Man and woman put me in carrier that wasn't familiar. I meowed and meowed because I was in pain. Mom picked up carrier and ran outside up the hill past the fire to car. If you click this link you can view a video of fire and see a glimpse of mom as she scoots by the camera. You can't see but she has me in the carrier and we are heading to the car. We then went racing in car to pet hospital where I was looked over.

I was placed in special kennel that had air flowing in it to help me breath. I was hooked up to IV so that I could be given fluids and pain medication. Men and women in scrubs kept putting cream on my owwies and stuff in my eyes to help the burning. Mom came back to visit. She cried and kept saying sorry she wasn't home to rescue me and Cosmo. I wanted to say it's not your fault mom but all I could do was cry from the pain. Mom eventually had to leave but it was okay. I didn't want to be pet and the people in scrubs were taking good care of me...

When mom returned to the apartment complex she was asked to do an tv interview (she's a red cross volunteer and ironically was on call the night of the fire and dispatched to help).  Here's a pic of mom doing the interview:

You can see our apartment building on fire in the background.  Here's another pic this time our building is already gone... fire is almost out.  Fire crews would stay on site for 3 days putting water on hot spots so as not to rekindle and risk the other buildings.

I think it's fair to say mom is in shock at this point.  Reality has sunk in that home is no longer there and Cosmo hasn't been found.  She fears the worst for Cosmo.  (As of 3/27/12 when mom updated this post, Cosmo has not been found and is assumed deceased.)

Here's a pic of big brother Cosmo.  Sitting in or on top of boxes was one of his favorite activities...

I sure do miss him!