Okay, 2021. I’m only kind of impressed so far.
I mean, that’s really just sort of true because I do feel a sense of peace about most things in my life.
While I’m sad that Larry King died, I am content that news stations were able to give him the credit he deserved because there wasn’t some sort of angry, crazy chaos happening in the country.
And I’m glad my careers are at a fun, manageable stage right now even though I feel like real estate might be picking up a bit and I’m committing to a veterinary writing project with my Clark Fork Veterinary gang that I don’t think I’ll regret.
I am enjoying defining my place within the practice even though I’m only there 3 or 4 days each month. The drive time one way is 90 minutes, which is the only barrier to me working there more hours/days. You wouldn’t know the gang is so heavy on the estrogen because of how well everyone supports one another and gets along.
I’m not sure why groups of women often don’t get along but I don’t feel like that’s an issue in Deer Lodge. Maybe its our age and background differences? (I think I’m probably one of, if not the oldest person there, which makes me smile… and then I feel old… and then I laugh.) Or maybe its just their culture of acceptance and support and the leadership that exists there that prevents any petty BS from creeping into the workplace.
Regardless, its a lot of fun and I get to wear all of my colorful DVM shirts and lab coats again!
And I am slowly getting them all hooked on Sparkle Pens!
Personally there is some satisfaction to 2021 in that we finally closed on our most recent attempt to refinance. This has been an arduous process with countless phone call hours over the last 3 years and I’m not someone who enjoys spending time on the phone.
The last time I spent hours of my life working to refinance the lenders pulled Jumbo loans because of covid early in 2020 and we lost our deal one week out from closing. That sucked.
We re-applied this fall, though, and after numerous faxes and uploads and print-outs and voicemails and emails and “are you kidding me’s” and rollings-of-my-eyes we actually closed. (The realtor term that has become my mantra, ‘nothing is closed until its closed’ was in my head the entire week prior to closing up until the last signatures were signed.
And then we went out to lunch, which we haven’t done for months, to one of our favorite places to eat here in Seeley Lake (Double Arrow Lodge) and we were the only guests there and Karla wore her mask so we felt safe on top of feeling relieved about the closing. And the Caesar salad (anchovies!) and French Dip were fabulous, too.
(And despite the unplanned matchy-match of our shirts I enjoyed my look because of the stellar bling I had chosen from the Bling Emporium to wear that day!)
The fact Alistair received his 2nd dose of the Moderna covid vaccine is something that makes me smile right now, too. I won’t lie, though. While he felt mostly fine other than a slightly sore arm after the first vaccine, he pretty much felt like ass after the second one and was actually kind of out of it the next day.
I haven’t posted that on social media (other than right here, right now) (kudos to any of you who get the Jesus Jones reference) because I don’t want to discourage people from getting the vaccine! It is imperative that we get vaccinated to slow the spread and decrease the chances of the virus mutating again & again.
While I don’t specifically identify as having covid fatigue, I know many friends who do and we all really would love to get back to our lives and maybe even back to hugging clients whose pet I just had to help transition over the Rainbow Bridge (while wearing a mask of course.)
Speaking of that…
Another thing I haven’t put out there is the fact something seems to be up with our farm-boy-turned-indoor-love-bug, Jockey.
He is almost 13 years old and, no, that isn’t very old but it is considered ‘senior’ for cats.
We had started finding really bizarre clumps of his hair in places he had been and it wasn’t normal. Sure, cats shed and sure, I vacuum too much but these were large tufts seemingly falling out at the roots. This has been going on for a couple of months and then Alistair commented that he thought Jockey looked a bit thinner during his last time back in Montana. Probably easier for him to notice because I’m with Jockey every day.
Then last week I noticed the red, inflamed skin and the scabs where the hair had been falling out along his spine. I fear he has some version of feline skin cancer – lymphoma, mast cell, whatever- and none of the options or outcomes are any good.
He wasn’t wild about our recent stint as dog-sitters for sweet Jazz (who totally gave the cats the respect they deserved!) so he seemed kind of ‘off’ personality-wise last month but he is still the ridiculous lover and snuggler that he has always been.
And he eats. And drinks. And runs around.
And he remains fascinated with the super cool fish tank here in my office even though you can see a little of the redness along his spine. He doesn’t seem tender or itchy when I examine him so his quality of life doesn’t appear affected right now.
And he’s still the shit-disturber that he’s always been. Don’t get me wrong- we love our giant boy a ton but he always had a bit of an asshole in him, even when he lived mostly in the barn. His tender grooming licks often turn into chomps with a sense that he actually means it even when he would looks away all innocent-like when you say, “HEY” and pull away from him. (That remains consistent right now, too.)
The asshole in him last night identified something Alistair and I had no clue was going on. And no clue how long it has been going on.
I saw him jump up onto the bar and reminded him that cats aren’t allowed on the bar, knowing he was probably flipping me ‘the paw’ from the other side. When I’m on the couch I can’t actually see him because of the height of the bar and the 4 bar stools but for whatever reason I stood up and my mouth fell open.
The jug of water he’s drinking from is the water we use to pour into the black ice maker there to make ice cubes.
OUR ice cubes.
The same cubes in Alistair’s martinis and sometimes my Caesars.
Every. Single. Night.
And the way he waltzed right up to it told me he’s been doing this quite comfortably for weeks. Probably months. I sincerely hope we haven’t made you a cocktail from the bar with those cubes if you were here. or you made one yourself if you were pet sitting for us. Alistair did comment a couple of times that the cubes seemed to have ‘something’ in them, like random air debris.
It was probably clumps of Pastuerella multocida or something from Jockey recently licking himself post litter-box.
I shit you not. (See what I did just there?)
(I promise to only use my special Cat Woman powers for good if anything develops!)
So I try not to think about the possible inevitable short-term future for our big boy because he’s keeping on keeping on and I didn’t bother getting him off the bar last night but I did text the picture to Alistair who agrees that we need a new water jug and I work on not letting my brain go to the fact that Sport, aka my appendage, is going to be 21 soon or that Bebe with her hair matts she reluctantly lets me work on every day is going to be 18 and I treasure each day like today that I get to spend at home working on real estate and my blog with a cat in my lap and one smacking at the fish tank and the third by the wood stove because I know I won’t have these days at some point and I won’t know what to do with myself and my heart will hurt when most likely Alistair won’t be here when its Time and Doctor Mummy will have to have a talk with real life Mummy and it is going to supremely suck and I’m kind of dreading it already.
And I’ve got a few tears slipping down my cheeks, which hasn’t happened for a long time when I’ve written a blog.
But I’m going to continue to choose Happy and I’m going to bring the barn kitties in for soft food for the night and then I’m going to walk down the back driveway while Maggie & Jake follow me as far as they can hoping I don’t forget to give them grain and some hay on my way back.
I’m going to keep trying to embrace 2021 because, like Bastille sings in ‘Survivin’…“I’m going to be fine, I’m gonna be fine, I think I’ll be fine.”
There aren’t any other options if I want to continue to be Me in a whirlwind of veterinary medicine, real estate listings & contracts, books to ship and market and a farm to run, all while trying to be a good wife and Mummy. Our mortgage rates are down so, hey, there’s that! And Clark Fork Veterinary Clinic just feels like the right place at the right time.
Carry on, 2021!