Thursday, January 20, 2011

As the week wore on, it became less and less likely that Louise would return.  She had disappeared on the coldest of nights.  She was white, and the snow on the ground made visible to owls and coyotes.  Like any mom would feel, my heart was heavy for my daughter, her owner.

At the beginning, I prayed for her return.  Please God, let her be okay, let her come home.  As the week progressed with no word of her, I prayed that she was okay with someone else, at least not hurt, not some hawk's breakfast.

Acceptance finally gave way to understanding that I had to let go, and listen, rather than ask.  God often teaches us or reaches out to us in times like these.  Perhaps rather than talking, asking, I should listen.

Anna and I made flyers, talked to people, emailed every animal shelter, drove around and around the neighborhood.  We made a sign to place by our driveway.  We scoured websites.   We learned to do things, rather than wait.

A phone call alerted us to a nearby feral colony of cats.  Perhaps our cat was there?  We called the owners of the barn to no avail, so went anyway.  We found no Louise, but did find a kitten, unable to raise his head, laying by the road.  Sick, likely a loss of appetite, combined with being the smallest in a large feral colony, he was about to join his sibling who lay dead and headless in the bushes.  "This one's going with us," I said.

He was pitiful.  Emaciated, dehydrated, he weighed a little over 2 pounds despite being 6 - 8 months old.  We put him on a heating pad, forced milk in his mouth and expected him to die.  An hour later, he stood up.  Still missing Louise, we now had a distraction and a mission to save this one little life.  A kind soul at the Humane Society saw a Facebook post and asked me to bring him in to test.  He was FeLuk negative and was loaded down with meds to fight his upper respiratory infection.  I found out that the woman was a neighbor, only a few streets down.  Jefferson began to recover fully, although a kind vet who later looked at him for me, said he might not ever get much bigger and remain always the kitten due to his poor start in life.

A week to the day, I was taking Lauren back to college when my phone rang.  Louise was back!  Hungry but apparently well, she's not telling where she went.  We now have a collar on her and an appointment to microchip her.  She's lost her outdoors privileges.

Through all this, I could not help but empathize with people who have missing soldiers, people who have children missing.  How does one go on?  We did learn to do what we could, to make a plan of attack.  We learned to pray for acceptance in our hearts rather than the answer we wanted, the strength to carry on.  In the end, we met and heard from many wonderful people, saved a little life, and found we could continue to put one foot in front of the other.  I suppose that's all any of us can do.

It is snowing steadily.

Of the three new black Australorps, one is definitely a rooster.  One is definitely a hen.  The jury is out on the third.

I am going to be the editor/publisher of my brother-in-law's blog.  I am still developing it.  If you'd like to watch as I set it up and work on it, you can go to Surviving in the Reel World.  It still needs a lot of work, but we hope to have it up and running by March 1st.  Joe is a TV host on the Outdoor Channel, a professional angler and hunter.


Travis Erwin said...

Off to check it out.

Cloudia said...

This post was full of heart and wisdom- all YOU!

Aloha from Honolulu
Comfort Spiral



Marie said...

I was backtracking to see the story behind Jefferson -- I'm glad I did and I'm so glad to see that he found his way to a safe place where he will be loved and cared for -- and also that your other wanderer returned home safely!

pita-woman said...

Shouldn't you have named him "George" instead of Jefferson?
Or perhaps "Bently"?


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