Millennium Mom

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

What a wacky day

I really don't know where to begin today's blog. Maybe I will start with last night. I started watching the weather around 6pm, because it did seem like we would get our first really big storm and the weather man/women might actually be right. They were predicting snow starting in the middle of the night and going straight, with some mixture of sleep/freezing rain for about 42 hours. I immediately looked at my calendar to plan for a day working from home. I had even told Amber to call me in the morning.

At 4:45 am the phone rang with a recording from the school district - no school today. I slept in until around 6:40 and then got up. I had logged on to my computer before anyone has woke up. Finally around 7 Ben and Claire got up and I got them their PJ's...Amber told them they would have PJ day if it snowed.

Amber called and we told her to come in, but take her time with the roads, safety mattered most. Arnie left around 7:20 to go downtown, his commute wasn't that bad, only about twice as long or 45 minutes. I quickly fed Ben and Claire before I got on my first call at 7:30. A bit before 8 Claire came into the office and I gave her one of those "don't interrupt I am on a call" and she replied "mommy this is really important, Smokey is dead." Smokey is our older cat, 12 years old to be exact. She then went on to say "we tried to pet him and he didn't move, he's dead." She took me to the stairs, where he was lying peacefully as if he was sleeping, and yes he was dead.

Of course I lost it. We said a prayer and I explained to the kids what had happened. In hind sight I now think, he was lethargic, not himself, a bit aloof, but nothing would have led me to believe this was coming. It was devastating. I then also realized I had never been this close to death. I went and got a box and Ben got an old blanket. As I lifted him he was already very stiff and heavy. The first box was too small, so we got a bigger one. A few minutes later he was safely tucked away and I put him into the garage, hoping it would be cool enough until Arnie got home. I then called Arnie in hysterics before getting back on my call. All of this is before 8:15.

Amber arrived around 8:40, and then Sarah woke up. I was able to get a lot of work done, even with the kids sometimes on the computer next to me. We all had lunch together which was great, and then back to work. The kids played outside a bit, had friends over, watched Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and in general had a great day, despite how sadly it started. Ben was the most effected by it, even though Claire is my animal love (and says she wants to be a vet). He kept going into the garage to check on him and asked Amber to drawer a picture of Smokey that they all wrote notes on and put in his box.

I sent Amber home before 4 as it was starting to sleet then and I wanted to give her an early jump before it got busy and dark. Arnie was home around 5pm. We then all headed outside again, the kids to play with friends, Arnie and I to do the driveway and dig a grave for Smokey (and my other cat Callie who died 3 years ago and I never buried her ashes...we were away when it happened). Thankfully my mom was right in that once you break through the topsoil, the ground isn't that hard. A good pitchfork did the job and about 20 minutes later in freezing rain we had a big enough hole.

We said our last prayers and goodbye to good friends and companions. Inside to make dinner for our family plus Drew who is Ben's best buddy. We all sat down for a nice meal and now are letting the kids watch some PBS, so I am online. So that was my wacky day. Tomorrow may be similar in that it is now supposed to snow another six inches on top of ice. My all day Beauty Trends offsite at the convention center has already been cancelled, so I am planning another day on the phone. This time I will have Arnie home with me and we will likely just tell Amber to stay home and handle it, versus risking her driving (that is if the weatherman/women is right two days in a row).

For now I ponder when to get another cat. When we lost our first cat and went down to just Smokey I was paranoid for 9 months and finally told Arnie I wanted a cat for my birthday. I just didn't want the kids to be without an animal, and I guess me too. So we got Speckles to keep Smokey company and make sure we always had a loving animal in the house. Arnie asked me today, so we getting another one. I guess I'll start looking at the shelter's web site, this time for a nice male cat to keep Speckles company and be part of our family.


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