I have a hard time going to bed on the days where he’s not had the best day. Yesterday and today have not been Best Days.

There are so many things we have gotten him through, and as his human for 11 years, I feel for this guy. January it was a really high grade heart murmur, hectic liver values, and a T4 for his thyroid was off the charts. He got his cure for the hyperthyroid and his heart murmur is lower grade. His liver values are all normal after 6 months post I-131 treatment. His blood pressure is fine and there is no arrhythmia to his heart, but now it’s slightly off axis indicating that it did not return to normal size. We were also warned that when he went euthyroid he would probably have irreversible kidney damage show. He did, and six months post I-131 we have plateaued at Stage 2 CKD.

This means that if we have best case scenario with no other maladies, the estimate is 3-4 more years with Tom. However, he will probably need to see a cardiologist before that timeline completes. Meanwhile while researching, I came across this, and have avoided understanding what it’s saying:

Stage 2: The creatinine level is between 1.6 and 2.8, which means that 66% – 75% of kidney functions have been lost. At this stage, your vet might also recommend switching to a more kidney-friendly prescription diet if you have not already done so. He or she will probably also recommend a follow-up blood test in six months.

It’s estimated that Tom has 25-33% of his kidney function. Just like that. When we reach stage 3 is where in humans they may consider dialysis…mechanically filtering your blood. It takes hours each session, and extends your life but you are a cat so you can’t and it won’t.

Himbs will not get better. Himbs will get extended until his humans feel it’s unfair to himb.

What I know about my Tom is that he’s an emotional eater. I don’t like putting two and two together. Monday and Tuesday I have been told he is either sleeping all day or proclaiming he’s starved whenever he’s awake. I had that emotional eater thing hammered through my head last night at bed. When he’s got nothing on his mind he will sleep in a shrimp position. He was sprawled out his entire length on the other side of the bed last night.

We have been working so hard for this guy and for a moment here I will feel sorry for myself. I will do it because we wear our masks to protect people we don’t know. It’s not about looking out for our own ass. The holidays are coming and humans want their lives back so stubbornly that they will blow this up again during cold and flu season, and here we are, not able to control the outside world and lack of kindness to each other, loving this stupid stray cat from the shelter this hard.

Dismal and I have committed to his health, diligently as we’ve been educated (which evolves) for 7 years. We started his diet restrictions and breaking his heart with that in 2013. When he finished losing 8 pounds by 2016 he had started getting sick months later with FLUTD. 2017 was surgery. Then the vomiting started mid-summer 2019, the radiation this spring, and all the things in between with the car sickness, the medications, the labs for urine and blood, lather rinse repeat. I know what’s going on. Dismal knows it, too. Tom’s second language is English and so I know he only understands a little. I can only hope that our other boy has an effortless longevity because he gets every change in Tom’s betterment as his new routines, and he’s Toms junior by 3 years.

Just when I feel an Ugly Cry starting, I see Tommy is asleep on his smaller cat tree. He’s crushing his wool Yeti Cave that’s sat on top, and he’s Shrimping. -heart, bubba-