Cat Lady Emerging

Next weekend I'll be boarding my cats at my friend Erins house. I've tried to do research and asked my doctors but they have no information on how the radiation will affect my pets. I can only go by the fact that I'm not allowed near humans -- and cats have much smaller thyroids -- ergo it makes sense that I shouldn't be around them either.

Friday I called every pet boarding facility and vet in Huntsville and Madison. None of them will take my cats. It's not secret that my cats don't go to the vet (keep your criticisms to your self -- FYI, before the years end I'll be finding them a UK approved vet and getting all this shit in order so they'll be ready for Scotland). So they don't have up-to-date shots. Especially not Tabitha (the ex-stray). And because I don't have records of their vet history and up-to-date documentation about their shots, no one will take them. No one. And to bring them up to date on their shots (namely distemper and feline leukemia) will be about $100 per cat. Even if I could get that done by Friday, I can't afford that. And I'd still have the boarding costs on top of it. Basically this conundrum gave me a panic attack at work Friday. I was convinced my cats would die a painful early death and it would be all my fault because I'm such a horrible pet owner -- I should have never adopted Jack and taken in Tabitha because I'm too bad of a person to care for them. I should just give them up to someone else. Obviously.

There was crying. (Please note, no one saw or heard me cry - I'm not one of those annoying bitches who cry in the bathroom and make everyone uncomfortable.)

And then Erin and Matt agreed to board them. Erin and Matt are SAINTS. They already have enough cats of their own (HELLO, HENRY) and certainly don't need another two. But they're gonna take care of mine from Thursday - Monday. And not only are they going to do this for me, but they're actually excited about it (or acting that way at least). They're not even guilting me about it. They're just graciously doing it and telling me it's no big deal and that they're looking forward to it. Holy fuck, I have the best friends ever. Obviously this is even better than a boarding house or pet resort because they'll give them more attention and my cats know them. My cats like them. They like my cats. it's perfect!

This does not make me stop worrying though. I'm going to hate leaving them behind -- there will probably be more crying when I drop them off. And I'll be home for 5 days -- stuck at home on self-imposed quarantine. Lonely. And I won't have my kitties. I love staying at home with my kitties. I love long relaxing weekends of watching movies with Jack in my lap and Tabitha curled up beside me. I love when I take a nap and they join me in the bed. I love having them so close. And I love that if I hear a strange noise in the night I can either blame it on Jack or take solace in the fact that Jack doesn't give a shit so I shouldn't either. I mean if a murderer was in the laundry room, Jack would act funny -- this is fact.

Erin and I have exchanged our cats favorite things so they can get used to each others smells. And I bought them a giant bag of food to leave with them. And I went to Sams and got a giant thing of Tuna so they can eat well while they're away. I also bought Jack a special toy that I'll leave with MAtt and Erin to give him after he tires of the new environment (Jacks the most destructive when hes bored). It's a little bird complete with feathers that chirps when you tap it. i've got all these items already packed in the car. I feel like I'm packing backpacks for my children for their first sleep over. Which makes me feel pathetic. But no less worried.

I fear that they will not understand that I'll come back for them. I'm worried about the stress this will put on them. And I'm just worried in general. They're not my babies -- I'm not that cray -- but they are my cats. My cats that I adore and live with. The cats I'm taking to Scotland with me. The cats that greet me when I come home and insist on being near me when I'm around.

I'm also worried that Matt and Erin will be stressed out by the burden. Jack talks. Jack wails to be more specific. he doesn't just do it when hes upset -- he does it all the time. Hes a talker. He wants to talk to you. He wails for no reason other than to do it. You can practically have a conversation with him. He also breaks things. And chews everything. and hes WAY to smart. He still manages to trick me and I know how he thinks. I hope he doesn't tear up their stuff.

I don't wanna board them! I've left them alone for a week before, but they were at my house when I did. They were in their own home. This will be a whole new stressful mess. Ugh.

Dinner (2)

Its dark and my quesidilla smells funny.

Dinner (1)

Erin and I are eating at Scene Lounge. The table is sticky. This bothers me.

Pizza test

How genius is this? Sams pizza - cook a quarter and freeze the other three. Also, holy fuck - i can text pictures to my blog!

Email I sent to the family

Hey everyone!

I wanted to give you a heads up that I’m having a radiation pill next
week to kill off my thyroid. As you already know, I was diagnosed
with Graves Disease in early February. There is no question that it
is Graves as I have also been seeing a radiologist at the Cancer
Institute (no, I do not have cancer, but the treatment for thyroid
disease is the same). I had a iodine uptake scan and within 4 hours
my thyroid had absorbed almost 80% of the iodine radiation tracer.
Normally it would be around 15-20%. The scan also showed that it was
a fully saturated absorption – no dark or light spots to be concerned
about – just classic Graves.

I started medication for it sometime in January. I’ve tried 2
different medications and had blood work done to see how they’re
working. They’re not. In fact, I’ve started feeling worse. I’m very
hot all the time. And since my thyroids swollen, I have this constant
choking sensation (like theres a hand or tight necklace on my throat).
But the biggest worry is my heart rate is too high. My resting heart
rate is about 20-30 beats faster than it should be. With our family
history of heart disease, letting that go uncheck would be a bad idea.
(In the short term, I also do not want to burn up when summer gets

Both my doctor who diagnosed it, and the radiologist came to the same
conclusion, that iodine radiation treatment is the best solution at
this point. The good news is, I don’t have to have surgery! All I
have to do is take another radiation pill like I did for the tests.
This pill will just be a lot stronger. It will be Iodine 131 (if
anyone wants to look it up). They were originally going to give me a
dose that would leave me quarantined in the hospital for a few days.
I had come to terms with this and decided to treat it like a camping
trip vacation – just with air conditioning, wifi and cable TV. So I
was kinda disappointed when they decided to go with a smaller dose.
Not that it’s a small does, but I’ll be getting the max they can give
me without quarantining me.

No worries, I wont fee sick or anything. At max they said I might
feel nauseous and get a dry mouth and feel tingling in my cheeks.
Though the radiation doctor does not believe I will have any side
effects at all. I’m just going to go into the hospital, take a pill
and go right back home. The iodine will then be absorbed by the
thyroid and the radiation will kill it. I will still have some
thyroid tissue left which might need to be taken care of in the
future, but it’s a unanimous agreement that this is the best solution.

Now, even though I’m not being quarantined in the hospital, I still
have strict guidelines to follow. I’ll be receiving the pill on
Friday April 3rd (that’s a week from today). Here are the guidelines
I need to follow to prevent exposing others to harmful amounts of
radiation (which could possibly cause them thyroid cancer in the
future which I would feel REALLY bad about):

**I need to avoid being around people as much as possible for 3-4
days. (I’ve taken off work Monday and Tuesday to accomplish this – so
it’ll be like a vacation of forced seclusion! I plan to be lazy all
weekend and watch lots of movies at home.)

**For a week I need to avoid close contact with adults (there’s a 2
meter distance recommendation) and any long exposure even at that.

**For a month I am to limit any prolonged or close exposure to
pregnant women and children. This means no coming home where I might
expose Cade and Cole. So I will not be home during the month of April
which sadly excludes Easter  I apologize that I will not be there.

Keep in mind that I wont feel in any different, I just need to follow
these guidelines for the sake of everyone else. Also heads up, Graves
runs in families. Dad had his thyroid cut out, I’m having mine
radiated out. Might want to note this on your medical histories.

Good news is, for most of May I wont have any classes! So I’ll come
home to visit in early May – perhaps the first weekend in May when my
ban on being near children is lifted.

As far as a school update – I’ve made an 82 on both tests we’ve had!
I’m taking a Unix class and I’m pretty proud of my 82s!

Love you all,

Need to borrow Geiger Counter

So my thyroids getting worse and worse. My resting heart rate is way to high and I'm burning up -- but am I losing weight, of course not. So anyway, I'm getting more radiation. This time they're gonna give me a pill with Iodine-131 and it'll kill off my thyroid. I'm gonna get the max dose they can give me without quarantining me in the hospital (I was kinda looking forward to it, was gonna treat it like a camping trip and vacation...). So I need a geiger counter for REAL this time. Must have readings.

Also there's pepto-bismol-pink smoothie on my ceiling, and you know what? I just don't feel like cleaning it off the ceiling. I got it off the floors and walls and out of my hair. But I stop at the ceiling. I really need a better blender.

Also Erin insists that I post about kickball on here. I'll have to get the courage up for that one. I was full of so much self hate after that game. Had 2 skinned knees and shins, sore as fuck and played horribly. Oh the horror. I just wanted to go home and clean my wounds and cry after that game. Its one thing that everyone knows you're not in shape. Its a whole different level to SHOW them. I will not be signing up for the company softball team - ever. It was just a faun casual game with friends. I was the worst! And Nathan kept putting his hand on my shoulder and telling me I was doing good -- thats when you KNOW you suck so much ass. So I dont think I'll ever be invited back, but I dont think I'd go if I was. I ran after a lot of balls while cursing and flipping people off. I did make one spectacular catch which burst a few vessels in my hand (is kicking it that hard, really necessary)? That catch was awesome and I celebrated it. It was not enough to redeem the entire effort.

They convinced me to go hang out afterwords, which was better than going home and crying about how much I suck. But I think waiting a few hours to clean the dirt and rocks out of my knees wasn't my best plan. That shit HURT. A LOT. Mom says peroxide doesnt hurt -- oh hoho oh, I beg to differ. That shit hurts. Jack was so worried about me that he got in the tube with me to see if I was ok.

God bless ambien, I'm in that druggy loopy stage where I shall drop any minute. Bed...

I've been accused of having abmoral paranoias.

Tonight I witnessed a new hatching of baby cockroaches. In my apartment. Kyle came over and showed me his new bike and then when I walked up stairs I noticed something white at the base of the garbage can. Well, obviously Jack put something there. So I bend down to look closer before touching, and its crawling. I thought it was a bit of food covered in maggots. GROSS, Jack! So I get a flashlight to investigate further (even though this is just at the base of my garbage can -- no where near secluded or dark AT ALL). Roaches. Ittby bitty tiny clear-skinned roach babies. Who thought it could be worse than maggots?

Had there been someone else around, I'd have freaked. But it was just me and so I was the only one to clean it up. So I did. I got all of them with paper towels and stuffed them in a ziplock bag to die a slow and painful, suffocating death - with no chance of escape - in my garbage can. And then I cloroxed the entire area. And then I had to vacuum the entire house. And then, well of course I'm calling the landlady to get a bug-man up here asap -- so I have to have a clean house. So I scrub the kitchen, do the dishes, clean the entire house (not that my house is ever that messy, ask anyone). And then I bug sprayed every where I could think to bug spray. I hope my cats won't die from the fumes; it had to be done.

Then I took a shower and thoroughly cleaned myself. Twice, because - oh my god - I can feel them on me. I briefly considered chopping some of my hair off just to make sure. I've been meaning to get it cut anyway.

Bed time.

But what if there are roaches IN MY BED? Well they had a whole host of babies right out in the open on my carpet. I looked up their life cycle, those babies were less than 4 hours old, and I haven't seen any parents. And surely my bed is a more dark and closed off space to lay eggs, right? Ok, I'll closely examine the bed before laying down. That'll work. But wait, what if they're between the sheets? Well, obviously all of my bed linens must be changed out for clean ones and washed immediately. And then I had to vacuum the mattress to be sure.

Ok, I think I might possibly be able to crawl into bed now. Maybe.

So that's why I didn't go to bed on time. Not my fault.

I think I need another shower.

in a late night establishment telling strangers personal things

1. The thing everyone wants to know: I got the tests back. I have Graves Disease. On meds and will have blood work in one month and discuss long term treatment options. I hope I don't go bug-eyed. That just wouldn't be attractive.

2. I put up wood lattice on my balcony railing so jack cant jump off the balcony. I also used the extra lattice on the wall next to my bedroom window. I'm going to plant a flowering vine on it. It's already awesome -- it's gonna be even better.

3. Momma planted my balcony with pansies :) I like them.

4. I was going to post pictures of the lattice and the wicked dark red bruise and goose-egg on my very swollen ankle, but I can't find my adapter to read the card on my phone. I got injured getting the lattice at Lowes. Fucking gay employee wouldn't help me with it.

5. I embarrassed myself so badly at work that I almost vomited and then proceeded to bang my head on my desk so much that my forehead is sore. I don't want to go into details about how I made a giant ass of myself, I'm trying to forget about it.

6. Made the best chicken casserole ever. Rice, cream-o-chicken soup, pulled chicken, and broccoli all mixed together in a casserole dish and topped with crushed saltine crackers and sharp cheddar cheese. Baked until some of the rice is burnt (I like the crispy). Holy crap was/is it good.

7. I recently became completely freaked out and bothered by the idea that my cats might die in a fire when I'm not home to rescue them. So I put a cat flap in my bedroom window screen which leads to the balcony. Now I can open my window when I'm at work and if there's a fire the cats can get out on the balcony. Also they can just generally enjoy the benefits of being able to hang out on the balcony while I'm at work. So far Jack has mastered getting out through the flap. He cannot, however, figure out how to get back in. He just sits outside the door and wails until I go to the window and call him which reminds him that - hey - thats how I got out here! Tabitha avoids it all together but I have faith that she will learn from Jack. Until they master the in-and-out action, I can't leave it open while I'm gone -- but I'm hoping soon I will be able to.

8. I got this stupid quiz-froward in my email. It asked my favorite number. My favorite number is zero -- it's a fucking awesome number. And then it tells me thats how many real friends I'll have in my life. I fucking hate forwards.

9. Regina Spektors music is AWESOME. Dillingham had all her CDs and gave them to me. I've been listening to them constantly. I take my iPod to work and listen all day. Then I listen more when I get home. I love it.

10. I moved cubes at work. LOVE my new cube. Still hate working in general -- but hey, better location.

11. I have become the Spider Solitaire master (on the easy 1 suite setting, that is).

12. I have tickets to the midnight premiere of Watchmen tomorrow night, Holy FUCK, I hope it's as awesome as it should be.

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