Remember the beginning of Hitchhiker’s Guide when the words yellow and bulldozer swim around Arthur’s hungover brain until they connect and he finds himself lying in the mud in front of a Yellow Bulldozer that is about to take out his house?
For me the two words were needle and thread… the next thought was fuck! the stupid cat ate it.
Called my Vet (how I love them) and they said bring her in (of course).
Called my boss left her a unintelligible message of she which got Sophie – Vet – Clinic.
I was just drinking my first cup of coffee when I saw the black thread in dry bile in the hallway and suddenly everything thing was clear. The drooling and vomiting the night before that continued into the morning. Thursdays are long days for me – usually 8:45 am to 8:00 pm – so forgive me that I didn’t figure this out last night. Granted there was no black thread to give the story away…. but oh, I felt like the worst mom in the whole world.
I pulled on some clothes and remembered to brush my teeth before getting Sophie in the cat carrier and putting both of us in the car. She was awfully quiet the whole trip. I had Jo on the speaker and we talked the whole way. Thank the gods for good friends.
Left Sophie with the vet and made it to work in time to open the clinic (Go Me!!!). Called panicked boss told her not to panic everything would be fine.
Then I got the call….
Dr. Steve had opened Sophie’s mouth and found the needle lodged in one of the ridges near the soft pallet. But the problem wasn’t the needle, which cats can apparently pass through their system (think fish bones), the problem was the thread. I knew from looking at the thread on the floor that part of it was still in Sophie. So the conversation went from the best case – finding the string still attached – to endoscopy and hoping the string was in her stomach or the top of the small intestine because if they didn’t get it out it would likely cause a obstruction in the intestine leading to the the worst case — surgery.
He’d call me in about an hour and let me know what they were able to do.
Usually I ask to know what everything is going to cost – this time I asked not to be told – I didn’t want money to effect my decision. Sophie is only a little over a year – and we’ve been to the vet and spent more money in the last year than I spent in the months Minerva was dying of cancer. Check out our shitty day. I’d just made a deal to sell some of my airline miles and wanted to use the money for a special project… and selfishly I felt the plan drifting away.
Dr Steve called in under 20 minutes. They had the needle and the string. It was over… but not for me. The adrenal kick I got when I put the pieces together had me shaking. I’d had coffee – no food – and enough adrenalin running through my system to fight off vampires, zombies, and werewolves combined. But I had nothing to fight, I just had to stay at work, keep thing going, feeling my heart beat in my chest like some wild animal, and wait until I could leave and pick up Sophie.
She was the talk of the vet office – everyone knew about the red tabby that had swallowed the needle and thread. They even made her a bravely certificate that included a picture of the needle in situ. Apparently Sophie had been her usual charming self and I couldn’t be angry at her any more.
Dr. Steve asked if they could keep the needle. I got the cat and the certificate and took us home so we could both sleep.
And just the other day I was thinking what a boring life I had… nothing ever happened…
~ Tess (and a very happy Sophie)