I am struggling with a bout of being non-social. I’ve drastically reduced my use of social media, and as you can see I haven’t been blogging much. Part of that comes from not having the time–I’m doing the mum thing all day, and when the kids have been put to bed I sit down at my computer to work–but part of it also comes from fatigue. I don’t have the brainpower to write anything. And if I did, a lot of it would sound the same: Owlet is bouncing off walls and chattering and being cute. Sparky’s current obsession is Angry Birds. HRH and I are tired. I’m the one who’s losing out, of course, since I journal for my own reference. So here’s a scattershot of what’s been going on.
Work-wise, it was independently confirmed by my copy chief that editors are so happy with the work I’m doing on the novels that they’re starting to ask for me by name, which thrills me. I’m pretty much doing a two-week assignment, then I get a week off, and then I do another two weeks of work. So it’s steady.
We had lunch over at the Preston-LeBlanc household on Sunday, and it was so nice. Owlet wandered around completely overcome by all the things to look at and touch, and enjoyed Pasley’s potato-apple-carrot soup immensely, as well as an apple she plucked from a fruit bowl, the first she managed to bite into with the peel still on. Tamu and Pat and Flora stopped by the previous weekend and we delighted in watching BebeFlo and Owlet play together (especially the peekaboo game with a blanket at the end, where they both ducked under it and stood there giggling at one another). We got out to MLG’s fortieth birthday evening at Hurley’s before that, which was also fun, because I hadn’t seen everyone in ages.
HRH installed the new range hood this past weekend, and it’s a definite improvement over the last one. It no longer sounds like an aircraft taking off, as my father-in-law put it when he gave it to us. The only thing left to do is cut a hole in the kitchen wall for the new exhaust pipe. We’ve been without a fan since the attic was converted into the office, as the old exhaust pipe went up there and lay along the ceiling crossbeams on its way to the exterior exhaust vent. Once a floor was laid, there was nowhere for the duct to go (cutting holes through the ceiling crossbeams isn’t such a good idea, you know?), so a new vent needs to be made. That will happen this weekend.
I dyed fibre and spun it for a fellow Raveller, who won it in a draw for prizes in our Ravellenic Games team that she captained, and I’m quite pleased with it. I hope she is, too. It was my first time dyeing more than a bit of fibre to mess about with. I used Ziplock microwave steaming bags (which was an interesting experience in itself), and did the four ounces of fibre in four one-ounce batches. She requested raspberry and tangerine, and I blended a very nice colour for both from my Jacquard acid dyes, which of course blended and subtly altered when I spun it up. I did a DK/light worsted two-ply yarn, and I gt at least 300 yards out of it. It plumped up beautifully after a wash. Canada Post tells me that it’s out for delivery in her area right now, so she may have it today!
I am currently sewing the Halloween costumes for both kids, and mostly enjoying myself, although doing it in fifteen minutes here and fifteen minutes there is a bit frazzling. I lose my train of thought and a sense of what I’d planned to do next, or how to do it. (I am working without patterns for both of them, because I don’t have enough stress in my life.) I made a lovely pair of polar fleece pantaloons for Owlet, complete with two deep lace ruffles on the legs, and they’re possibly the most adorable things ever. I used polar fleece for warmth, because nights at the end of October around here are usually quite chilly. I made her a mob cap as well with polar fleece on the inside, but it’s smaller than I thought, so I need more deep lace to sew around the edge so it looks less ridiculous.
The last bit of current news is the worst. Today Nixie goes to the vet, and I suspect that she is not coming home. I am spending as much time as possible with her today. At the very least, the large, weeping, overgroomed area on her chest has become infected; at the worst, the overgrooming is directly related to a possible recurrence of the mass that was removed as part of her surgery this past spring, which makes the third appearance of it, and as something like 80% of feline tumours are malignant, even if we get it removed it will just happen again. We don’t have the money for tests and biopsies in the first place, nor treatment if the worst is confirmed. Sparky and I had a hard cry this morning when I reminded him that she was going to the vet today and she might not come home, and he railed against the injustice of it all: “I don’t want Nixie to die! I want her to come home! She is the best cat!” Of course you do, sweetheart; we all do. No one wants her to die. But things die, and we can’t stop it. It doesn’t make it any easier to deal with, and our hearts hurt so much, but it is a truth, and something we have to face, either now or in a few months, or a few years. When I dropped him off at school he met his friends at the schoolyard gate and stopped there, and I wondered why he didn’t go all the way in. And then I saw one of the girls put a comforting hand on his shoulder, and I understood what was happening: as soon as he’d arrived told them that Nix was sick, possibly too sick to come home, sharing his grief and his hurt, and they were sympathizing with him.
At best, I am hoping that they will be able to prescribe antibiotics and come up with a solution to cover the wound so it can heal properly, because everything I’ve tried has failed. At worst, I have to make the decision that every pet owner hates to make. Somewhere in the middle lies the “we can’t do anything but make her comfortable” diagnosis, and if that is what happens I will probably bring her home again until her quality of life deteriorates to unacceptable levels. Because right now her quality of life seems good: she is still eating well, moving in her usual fashion, using the litter box, purring and enjoying the occasional cuddle, and I am weak, and it feels wrong to say goodbye when she seems so normal other than the infected wound. Her energy hasn’t changed at all, and with every other cat we have known when they were tired, ill, and suffering, even though all of them were stoic they way cats are, because we are attentive and sensitive to that sort of thing. Nix doesn’t project any of that. Knowing when to make that decision is the hardest part of this whole process.
I’m so tired. I think the fibro is starting to creep back, as I’m having trouble focusing on things, lacking the energy to be happy and enjoy my hobbies, the body aches and weak hands are here again, sleep is not restful, and my appetite has vanished. Part of this could be attributable to the time of year, but I suspect that the fibro-quashing pregnancy and year of postnatal adrenaline and hormones are finally done with, and my body is slowly creeping back to normal operative levels. It is not fun. I am trying to find joy in small things, and it is very difficult. I don’t have much time to read, or spin. I can sometimes knit for a row or two. But most of my baby-nap time is taken up by cooking or baking or tidying or work or errands. And it’s all very well to think that this time next year she’ll be in daycare, which is exciting because we know she will love it, but that does not help me now.