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Stumbling Along a Confusing Path

Normally, writing is something I need and want to do. When I write, my body falls away and my thoughts come to life through my fingertips as I tap away at the keyboard. I always seem to have something I need to say and the words come tumbling out. Lately, I haven't felt that way about blogging and I think I know why.

I think I'm tired of writing about the difficulties in my life. I don't want to be a whiner but the truth about what's going on here, is that things suck. It's a rough road. There is little joy. There is a lot of worry and tension.

Everyone has their worries and tough times, too, so what should I write about? Then, I get stuck.

stop sign and snow pile.jpg
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. You know it's snowed too much when...

This winter has been the worst I can ever remember. Stats put us at over 70" of snow so far. Our typical SEASON of snow is about 50" and not all of it within a few week span. There is more snow due tomorrow and again, the possibility of another big storm later next week.

I've shoveled so much snow, so many times, beaten at the ice dams on the gutters and hung out of windows to break icicles that my arms were too sore to even type out a few words. The injury I had from the car accident in December reared its ugly head. Of course it would! I'm covered in black and blue marks and almost broke a few fingers from all of this. I'm stuffing prescription pain killers and muscle relaxants daily and the side effect of one of them is nightmares-so I'm having those, too.

©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. need heavy equipment to clear your driveway.

It's been a complete scramble, trying to find out how to keep the house from falling down and running out to re-stock up on supplies the second we have a long enough break in the weather to get out. I've only been able to drive my car once in the past few weeks. I'm stuck relying on Sam's 4wd car. There never seems to be time to tend to my dear blog.

Bob and Mac copy.jpg
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. Mac and Bob.

Lastly, there is the sad fact that I can't help any cats for awhile. With the costs for Bob's care ($2000 last month, alone), I can't rescue any cats and pay for it out of pocket-as I so often have done. Now I have to wait until Kitten Associates starts doing fundraisers. I've been working on that web site and waiting for our non profit "green light" from the IRS-which is due ANY day now. I think we'll be starting to plan some fundraisers, but I'm also torn in other directions. I need paying work, I need to sell off some things and I need to get the foster cats that are here, well enough to be adopted out.

Mazie is clear to go, but the kittens are not. As far as Mac goes, he really should be adopted out, but he and Blitzen are buddies so it's a tough choice to make. Mac can also be very fresh with Bob, slapping in him the face and hissing at him every time dinner time comes around. I think as Mac ages, he will make more and more plays to be a more dominant cat. It's already causing problems here-Petunia screams at him from time to time and Nicky has pooped out of the litter pan, onto the floor. I feel stuck, though. I don't know why, but I can guess depression is the core issue for me. I function well enough, but go through periods where I just am a lump and don't get much done. I feel very guilty about it. Maybe some of you have those problems, too? I feel like I don't get enough done and I'm too scattered. I make lists or try to do small tasks, but then I end up losing most of the day to doing Vet runs or pre-storm shopping that MUST be done before the storm arrives-and that usually cuts my day down to the nub, too. I keep trying to find a block of time to just sit down and work, but it's always a rush. Even now I have to leave in an hour to get Bob up to NY for his chemo. I won't be home until 6:30pm. Another day shot.

I'm sorry to be such a whiner. I'm really tired of my life sucking. I have given up on things getting better. I'll still try to make them better, but in my heart it seems fruitless to bother.

24 Hours Later...

Polly and Cara.jpg
©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. Polly and Cara passed out on my chest.

How could it be in less than a day, things could completely fall apart? Whatever I was whining about seems trivial now. Last night I found something “wrong” with one MacGruber's toes. First, I thought it was clumping cat litter stuck between two toes, but I couldn't get it out and scratching at it made his toe bleed a bit. Knowing that could lead to an infection, I stopped messing with it and made an appointment for Mac to meet Dr. Larry. I was going there anyway, the second time this week, with Cara and Polly. Why? Polly has become very ill, suddenly and Chester is sick, too. Cara is vomiting up large puddles of mucus, but seems otherwise in good shape. I figured it would be another run-of-the-mill Vet visit, but I was wrong.

©2011 Robin A.F. Olson. With all the rotten weather, there's still something beautiful that comes of it.

I'll fill you in on the details as best I can, but there is a chance the unthinkable has happened. The kittens may have a disease that cannot be cured. I don't want to say what it is. I'm not ready to face it. Tomorrow we will start getting test results back, but I won't really know much until next week. I promise I won't make you wait that long, but I need some time to sort this out on my own, do some reading, maybe do some praying, too. I realize that when you do animal rescue of any kind, there are those animals that come to your door and no matter how hard you try to help them, they can't be helped. It's out of your hands and all you can do is love them until their time comes and you have to find a way to be okay with that.

Right now I'm trying to find my way, but I admit to feeling quite lost.


You should post a picture of the toe. I am curious if it's a horny growth as I've dealt with on my kitties. In such cases there is not a lot to be done; you can cut it off as there is no bloodflow.

Dear God may if not be FIP. FIP is horrible, horrible, horrible. :( *HUGS* I will pray for them.

On a side note, please keep me posted on whether or not you want me to transport the 2 kitties at Maria's for you in March. There's no rush on this, just need to know by March 4th or so.

Be safe.

to your overall emotional downswing, on top of everything else. Whatever the issue is, you'll find a way to do what's best for your sweet kitties. Until then, I'm keeping you and your brood in my thoughts and prayers. take good care, K?


Oh no. I'm sick at heart. Sending healing vibes your way, Robin. All you can do is your best, and you are already doing that and then some. Just realize that anything past that is beyond your control.

Robin - Sending you a huge hug I am so sorry for all your burdens! It's horrible to want to do everything and not having the energy and means to do so - I can so empathize with what you're feeling. I wish I could help

Dear Robin....been there, done that, and still there! You are clearly overwhelmed, and I'm not sure how much I can say to help. YOUR health is the most important right now...your physical, mental and emotional health! Take comfort in your blog, you are SUCH a good writer, and being able to express your joys and frustrations is such a valuable release for you.

Years ago, we had no such outlet as I would write with pen and paper, get my wrath out, crumble the paper and burn it, so no one else could see it. Barring that, screaming into a pillow helped too! Heck, that's still a good solution at times. I just got back from downtown, and my mood becomes proportionately more depressed for each snub, whether perceived or deliberate. It's been many, many years since I have felt joy, and I continually search for it.

I would like to say I would pray for you and the kitties, but God has stopped listening to my prayers a long time ago.
Know though, that you are very much in my thoughts....I'm in forced retirement now....would jump at the chance to have a job, (I know my age is now in the way), but I will see if I can send you a few dollars.

If you can, steel yourself against taking on any more kitties until you can sort out the health and the bills from the present ones. Take as much help as you can from others....and consider how important your health and state of mind is. Look at the heaps of snow that you are dealing with, and see the good in it (yeah, I know, I know, it's hard to do...but look at the beauty in your last photo, and the humour in the buried stop sign!) Hugz to all!

I'm so sorry things are so rough. Sometimes, life just sucks. About a year ago, I adopted 2 kittens, Ruby & Banjo. We had 4 amazing months together, then Banjo began to exhibit lots of health problems, and we finally determined he had one of those incurable diseases (FIP). It seemed so unfair. It still does. I miss him terribly. I have no words of wisdom, just hope that knowing you're not alone may be of some comfort.

I've had many struggles with depression, too, so I completely empathize. I wish I could do more for you other than keep you and your beloveds in my thoughts and send you Reiki. *hug*

Ah Robin, you make miracles so often. If I could package up some strenght and hope and sleep in a big hug and give it to you, I would.

I have depression too and I know just how you feel - scattered, alone, like nothing I do makes a difference....the only way I make it through the bad days are my lovely anti-depressants, my dear cat Betty, and the days I spend at our local animal shelter. The work I have read you do is amazing and you are so cherished by all those whose lives you touch, I hope when the weather gets better the mood lifts. Cheers and best wishes for the kittens. We're all here for you, whether we are friends or strangers.

sending strength and love. Nothing more, nothing less.

Hey Robyn
I'm so sorry to hear that things seem so bleak right now. You do great work for kitties, and something tells me that you need to do some nice things for yourself also. If you haven't spoken to your Doctor about how you're feeling, I would encourage you to do so, you've gotta look after yourself. Sending you positive energy.

but I don't think we ever get used to it. Robin, I wish I could reach out and squeeze your hands and tell you everything will be all right. You'd think the elation of the "up" times would carry us through the down but often it doesn't -- especially for someone like you who really puts herself out there for potential heartbreak. I hate to say it but I think if you had some donations coming in it'd really help relieve a lot of the stress. I'm sure I'm not the only reader here who would be willing to help and chip in. If you get non-profit status there's even more incentive to give regularly.

The only good thing about the stress over money and the health of your cats is having to make clear decisions. I know... I once spent $8000 on a cat only to have her PTS a month later. If I'd not had the credit limit nor been so torn up emotionally, the outcome would've happened much sooner. I still feel guilty about it, knowing the money could've helped many other cats.

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