Tuesday, December 31, 2002

A Look Back at 2002: The Year of the Cat

Wow, what a year! Can't say I hate seeing it go. It's been too long for my tastes.

No move this year, but I was told I'd have to move early next year. About sixty days notice...the house has been sold, we are all out. I hate moving, and it's even harder with two cats. I wish I could afford my own studio apartment, move in, and stay there 20 years or so.

The year of the cat...oh, how so! I started wanting a kitten late last year, but there were no babies at the time. It took three trips to the shelter before I was able to bring home little Xena, weighing only about 1 1/4 pds. She was about 6-7 weeks old when I brought her home. She's now almost 9 months old and must weight at least 10 pds. Her last weigh-in was several weeks ago and she was over 9 pds. at that point. She is still the light of my life and a beautiful classic silver tabby. I just wanted her; no other cats.

Fate had other plans.

This fall my co-worker, Brad, and I walked out on my back porch after I had not been out to the backyard in quite a while. We were looking for a lawnmower. Instead, we ended up surprising a family of feral kittens who were playing on the back porch. They looked to be about six weeks old.

I rented a trap and managed to catch them all—a mom and six kitten. The mom was an orange tabby, and the kittens—four orange tabby males and two tortie females—were the cutest things, even though they spent a lot of time hissing and spitting.

I'll make a long story short by saying that I gave away the kittens—three to a vet, three to private households—and adopted the mom. I wasn't planning on it, but I had to hold onto her so long before I managed to get her fixed that before I knew it, we belonged to each other. She was used to being in the house, and I couldn't just kick her outside. So the short of it is that I now have two tabbies, one silver and one orange, both spaded females.

I learned about the problems with the feral cat population, and the "fix and release" method of keeping the population steady. Now I want to fix and release more feral cats, though I won't be keeping any more of them. I own my own trap and want to help others by making sure fewer kittens are born.

As for my meds, I changed doctors since I could tell that my pdoc didn't want to give me my meds free anymore. The new doctor is willing to see me less often. I also learned about buying meds from Canada, found I could even get a generic of my prescription not available here in the U.S, and can even somewhat afford it – about $200 U.S. dollars for a three months' supply. She wants me to have a blood test to test for thyroid problems, which can cause depression, but I haven’t been able to get to it yet. I will, as I do feel it should be ruled in or out.

On the spiritual front:

In August, I got to go to my denomination's annual General Conference, held in upstate New York this year. It was so awesome! I attended the whole week and it was the best 500+ bucks I ever spent (including plane fare and everything).

At Conference I was able to give a short version of my testimony at the Tuesday night worship service (largest group I've ever spoken to), and made connection with Andrew Camenga about writing for the Helping Hand. I was later given my first assignment—two weeks of devotionals, due February 1.

I also had the highest spiritual experience of my life at Sabbath Eve worship. Wow! What an awesome God we serve! For so long I have struggled with whether or not God is worthy of praise, even though I know that in my head. That night, I felt it in my heart.

In September of this year Kathi moved her board off Delphi and was able to make regular appearances once again. For the first time in a long time I feel like I am just where I belong doing exactly what God wants me to do. What an awesome feeling! For so long I have felt like I was up on a shelf and God wasn't using me. To see that come to an end and really be able to sink my teeth into the new board has been awesome.

So overall it's been a busy year, but good.