Anniversary Post

It has been exactly one year (to the day) since I last posted to this blog.  Happy Anniversary to SweetMewsic’s Musings!

The last year has, for the most part, been a happy and productive one. There are two exceptions to this worth noting:

  • My handsome orange polydactyl, Pawscar Awesome, had to have his right eye removed in June 2016. The pressure went out of control, and he had no vision remaining. A laboratory examination could find no explanation for the eye problem, which made me glad I had not agreed to a risky procedure to remove and analyze fluid from his eye that had been recommended some time ago. In the next few months we struggled to keep the pressure in his left eye in the normal range and cope with the diabetes which resulted from long-term steroid use for his eyes. In November, Pawscar’s left eye experienced the same rising pressure, and it seemed that I might soon have a blind kitty. Then I noticed the feel of “bubbles” under the skin of his hindquarters. I took Pawscar to Dr. R., who was able to remove some fluid under the skin for analysis. By the next day Pawscar was clearly miserable, unable to use his litterbox without pain. I made the difficult decision to let him cross the Rainbow Bridge on November 16, 2016. It was only when I returned home that evening and got a Facebook notification email that I realized that November 16, 2012, was Pawscar’s “birthday”: the day I first met him at Gasow Veterinary Clinic and determined to adopt him.
  • My husband, Jim, injured his back in the summer. One morning in late August he awoke and was not able to get out of bed, even with my help. He had a fracture in his back, which was repaired surgically. The surgeon said he could come home, but our internist wanted to wait a day. By then, Jim was weak and not eating well. So began five months during which Jim alternated between a nursing home (with rehab at first) and the hospital. Finally, on January 20, 2017, Jim passed away. I am now a widow, like my mother and my sister Judy.

I Grieve for America

It is Ted Cruz’s defeat in Indiana and subsequent withdrawal from the presidential race that drives me back to writing poetry and posting it online, first on Facebook and now here.

I Grieve for America

I grieve for you, my native land,

Once blessed by God and free,

Our Founders’ vision pure and good

For a land of liberty.

 

But you, my fellow citizens,

Have turned from what is fine:

Ejected God from public life,

Abandoned His design.

 

He made them male and female,

Not L, G, B, T, Q;

Ordained a plan for marriage

That did not seem right to you.

 

You murder babies in the womb

And call it “right to choose”;

Reject equality and life,

Our founding values lose.

 

This year God gave us one last chance

To choose an upright man

To lead this nation back to truth

And to the Founders’ plan.

 

Instead you seek an evil one,

Love arrogance and lies,

Exalt the scandal-ridden,

Hope that our system dies.

 

God clearly has withdrawn from us

The blessing of His grace.

Since we’re no longer “under God,”

He’s turned away His face.

 

Oh, were there still a place on earth

To which Christians could flee,

With God the center of our lives

And our society!

 

Repent, America, and turn

Back to our God and Lord;

Restore your founding principles,

Or face the Spirit’s sword.

 

And as for me, what can I do,

But pray God will restore?

Write in the name of one good man

And then, go pray some more.

 

© Shawna Fenner, 2016

 

 

2015 in the Rearview Mirror

On this last day of the year, I look back on 2015 as if it were an object in the rearview mirror of the orange Dodge Dart I usually drive. The year has had more ups and downs than usual, it seems.

The Good in 2015

I am pleased to say that there were no losses in our human family. I still appreciate sharing a home and companionship with my mom, who is the best in the world; and working with my sister Melissa on two jobs and my cousin MJ on a third.

What is more, I am feeling better than I have for quite some time. A decision to take my thyroid problems to a new doctor led to a change to Nature-Throid and a new vitamin/supplement regimen which has improved my energy level quite a bit. I am still not a “morning person,” but I am able to arise at 7:00 AM and make it to work by 9:00 AM on a regular basis, for which I am truly thankful.

I have very much enjoyed my work at church and at Birmingham Bible Institute. I love being the webmaster of three websites, accomplishing tasks in the church office, and teaching adults who want to know something about biblical Greek and/or Hebrew.

I am also glad to be back in the church choir again. I joined up on a whim in the summer, but have continued faithfully since then. I have always enjoyed singing (even when it is with only the cats as my audience), but choir is an opportunity to “make a joyful noise unto the Lord.”

My long-standing friendship with Nancy continues to be important in my life. Even when we can’t get together for several weeks at a time, I know she is there for me (and I am for her).

I have also enjoyed learning more about WordPress. I have taken–and continue to take–a number of online courses through Udemy, a great resource I discovered early in 2015.

The Bad in 2015

Probably the worst part of 2015 for me was the loss of four beloved cats: Revelly in March, Patch the Pirate in May, and both C. P. Pirate and Allicat (aka Googlie Girl) in November. Googlie was the oldest of my kitties; she had been with us since December 1998, when we adopted her as a one-year-old stray.

 

Googlie Girl says goodbye at age 18.

I also miss my chat buddy, Karen. We used to meet up on Yahoo Messenger for long talks on a regular basis, but since her granddaughter was born we no longer do.

Coming in 2016

I am assuming new responsibilities and more hours per week in my job at church. I am honored and humbled by the confidence placed in me, and desire to glorify God by doing my best in every task. I know I can rely on Him for strength and guidance.

 

Rascal Spatz
Seeing double? Yes, you are. This is Rascal Spatz times two.

I also have a new feline family member to get to know in 2016. His name is Rascal Spatz, and he came to us in December as a nine-month-old kitten. He has already managed to terrorize and harass several of the other cats with his rough play habits. He seems to lack the “fear gene.” He does loves his humans and has a loud purr.

Having a No Good, Very Bad Weekend

My no good, very bad weekend actually started on Friday. I did not realize I was suffering from fibro fog until the next day. What I did see was that C. P. Pirate did not look like he was feeling well. Early in the evening, when Jim told me Pirate had just gotten sick to his stomach, I got dressed again and took him to the vet.

Dr. Core gave Pirate a thorough examination. Pirate was x-rayed, had blood and urine samples taken, and got two shots to settle his stomach. His ears were cleaned as well; the compounded cream I applied daily tends to build up. Pirate’s temperature was normal, and there was no blockage revealed by the x-ray. Although I had suspected that Pirate has lost some weight, I was shocked to learn that he had lost 12.5 ounces since late September. I took him home.

Feline Farewell

Saturday morning, Pirate would not eat, no matter how often I presented his usual food. Even Spot’s Stew did not entice him. I called the veterinary hospital to get put on the call-back list for his test results. Something told me it would be a good idea to shower and get dressed. Dr. Core called me about 2:00 PM. Although his red and white blood cell counts were normal and he still had only a slight case of anemia, the other blood test results were very bad. Despite his every-other-day fluids and an adjustment of his anti-thyroid medication, both his kidney and thyroid values had risen to alarming levels. I knew it was time to say goodbye, so back we went to Gasow Veterinary Hospital. Pirate crossed the Rainbow Bridge lying in my arms as I kept telling him what a good boy he was and how much I loved him.

C. P . Pirate
C. P. Pirate in Happy Times

Fibro Fog

I was pulling into the garage at home when I got a call from my sister Melissa. Our pastor had contacted her about the location of the bulletins for Sunday. Melissa wanted to know if I had run them and where I had put them. It was only then that I realized that I had totally forgotten to run them off on Friday when I was at work. I had never forgotten to do that before, so it hit me that I must be pretty deep in fibro fog or having a VERY long senior moment. I headed over to church and reproduced the bulletins.

When I returned home again, I faced the unhappy but necessary job of interring my beloved Pirate. I found the perfect spot, right next to his best buddy, Patch the Pirate. I spent the remainder of the day and evening trying to divert my attention to less painful matters, without much success.

Today I discovered that the fog has not lifted. There was a check that I was supposed to get cashed as I worked with the team processing the morning offering at church. I had forgotten all about it until the deposit was complete and on its way to the bank. I opened the file cabinet to store the loose coin, and there was the check.

I hope and pray that my no good, very bad weekend ends today. This is not the condition in which I am able to offer my best service to the Lord and to my church. Missing Pirate is enough of a drain on my mental and emotional resources.