Saturday, November 7, 2009

It Is What It Is

Two days ago, I noticed that our kitten Possum seemed to be developing a mysterious pale gray oval spot on the middle of his gorgeous white nose — a spot similar to the suspicious patches on our kitten Wendy's ears. The vet and I thought those patches could be ringworm; I wanted her to see her ear and his nose. This morning before 8 am, we packed the kittens into their carriers and were driving to the vet when my husband's phone rang. It was the cat hospital, calling to tell us that Wendy's ringworm culture had turned positive and would we please turn around and go home, and wait for a call from our vet with the treatment plan? It would take some time to work it out and in the meantime, they didn't need our contagious kittens in the office.

I always expect the worst, it seems, and this time I got it. I suppose it's my own fault for naming her after a poisonous fungus, amanita pantherina. I thought it would make our timid little feral fierce, not fungoid. And as my sister points out, I was very wrong to throw away the little plastic statue of St. Gertrude, Patron Saint of Cats, when I was cleaning up my desk a month ago.

Oddly enough, I felt relieved to get the news. Now we can finally start doing something besides worrying and cleaning. Oral meds, weekly stinky baths at the groomer (we hope), maybe topical gels. And more and more cleaning and laundry. And more cultures to wait for: Every cat will need two or three negative cultures in a row, at three-week intervals, before the insanity can stop and we can believe we have a cure. We're still waiting to hear from the vet about everything we need to do, but we do know that the cats are all going to be getting once-daily liquid medication, Sporonox, for 28 days, at a total cost of $74. I was under the impression that there's be an extra zero after that number. That's a relief.

Thanks to my neurotic pessimism, the house is already cleaner than it's ever been. I've made it easier to do all the chores by packing away as many textiles as possible, including the rugs, as well as various knick-knacks. I sort of like swabbing up microscopic spores with my new wet/dry Swiffer, which is a good thing since I need to use it almost every day. I can tolerate sweeping up spores daily with my new Miele canister vacuum, with a HEPA filter and self-sealing dust bag, which I hope is saving me from having to replace the bag every day to prevent the spores from escaping. The bags cost a small fortune and are supposed to last for months. I decided to wash my microfiber cleaning cloths with fungicidal cat shampoo.

I wish I could find a way to make all this daily housecleaning more fun since it's going to take up so much of my time for the next few months. Time to put more Harry Belafonte on the iPod...

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