Archive | April 2012

My Weight Loss Journey Part #3 – Confessions of a Chocoholic

MY WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY Part #3 – Confessions of a Chocoholic

“You’re pre-diabetic. You’ll have to give up chocolate,” my doctor told me one day.

“What? Give up chocolate! Not in this lifetime, honey!” were my unspoken thoughts. Nosiree! Sure, I’ll cut out the French Fries and even the Coke. And I’ll eschew white rice, potatoes and other starchy carbs. But chocolate? I don’t think so!

I left her office feeling despondent over this news and wondered how I would be able to deal with this. Then, like so many people, I decided that there was no way. Besides, I’ve read that dark chocolate has health benefits! It is also on the Good Fat list and is considered a MUFA (mono-something or other, but basically good fat). There’s my answer. I’ll just eat that! And so I have, in tiny amounts, of course.

I stocked up on dark chocolate Hershey miniatures, Dark Chocolate Peanut M&Ms, Dark Chocolate chips and the always wonderful Dark Chocolate Kisses. Sure, I know there’s still sugar in them. I can read the labels. However, they don’t have any High Fructose Corn Syrup (Thank God) and I have managed to keep my ‘cheat’ down to a minimum. I’ll eat only 1 or 2 Peanut M&Ms at a time or 2 Kisses or 1 Miniature and only once (okay, maybe twice or three times a day) but it that so bad? I have still managed to lose weight and this is my one indulgence. It is a MUFA, dessert and favorite decadence all rolled into one. I savor each piece and let the chocolate melt slowly in my mouth as I savor its delicious flavor. Aah! Also, because they are not so sweet, they don’t cause me to crave more and more like milk chocolate does.

I know this because I had an occasion where I had access to a package of regular M&Ms. Ooh! What a treat, I thought as I opened the pack and told myself, “I’ll just eat a few.” I lied. I would put the pack away only to come back a short time later and repeat the process until they were all gone. Uh-oh. That was almost 300 calories I didn’t need. At least the dark chocolate doesn’t do that to me, at least not as bad. I can be content with just a tiny piece of the dark and go away happy and satisfied.

So, dark chocolate is staying on my list of things I will continue to have in spite of my doctor. She, apparently, is just not a chocoholic.

Readers: any chocoholics out there who agree with me? Or not? What one thing will you not give up in your quest to lose weight?

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My Weight Loss Journey Part #2 – Pizza: Is it really worth it?

MY WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY Part#2: Pizza – is it really worth it?

Diets don’t fail. Most of them, even stupid fad diets, will work in the short term. They restrict calories and yes, the weigh will come off. However, the hard part is keeping it off and that’s where the dieter fails and reverts back to the eating habits they had before they began the diet. Then the fat is back. I’ve been there and done that. Many times.

So, now that I have once again shed the fat I wanted to, the bigger challenge will be NOT going back to bad eating habits and not exercising. This is actually harder than losing the weight in some ways.

However, something happened that I think will help keep me on the path to healthiness: Pizza. Yeah, that Comfort Food that is a staple of many diets. I can attest that pizza was often one of our dinner choices on too many occasions. While on my weight loss journey, I only ate pizza on 2 occasions and mostly because I was somewhere where that was about the only option. Fortunately, it didn’t de-rail me from my mission. I was able to avoid it again after that. For a while. I did try making a healthier version at home, but frankly, they always sucked. It just wasn’t worth it.

The time came when my husband had reached his goal and I was very close to mine and my little Devil on my shoulder said, “Ooh! You’ve done so good. Now you can have Pizza again! You know you want some!”

Yes, I did, even when the Angel on the other shoulder said, “Oh no! You mustn’t. It’s terrible for you!”

I convinced hubby it would be OK to have Pizza and we could get one with healthy stuff on it. He agreed, although he had reservations about it. I could tell that, but chose to ignore the red flags I didn’t want to see.

We shared a medium Pizza that had a thin crust with no fat crust edges. One half had chicken, the other green pepper. Not so bad a choice, right? We did polish off the whole thing so no left overs.

On the way home, I was trying to find an equivalent in my calorie counter so I could put it down. Ouch! No matter what, the calories, fat and carbs were quite high. It was quite disheartening and I realized this was why I had stayed away from Pizza for so long to begin with. The other thing I realized was that it was laying on my stomach like the proverbial lead balloon. I also acknowledged that I didn’t enjoy it near as much as I had expected to. It seemed that the IDEA of Pizza was what I enjoyed more, not the actual food itself.

This particular week I was also doing some extensive blood sugar testing to see how certain foods affected my blood sugar 2 hours after eating instead of just in the morning. My readings were well under the 120 level that is the goal. However, after the Pizza, my blood sugar was at 161 two hours later!! Oops. Not good at all.

In the end, here’s what I learned: not only were the fat, carbs and calories more than I needed, I didn’t even enjoy it that much, I felt crappy afterwards and it was definitely not good for my health. So to answer my original question: Is Pizza really worth it? My answer now is a resounding NO. Pizza was now on my “Hell No” list of foods.

If that isn’t enough to deter me in the future, I can always recall an incident that happened a long time ago. One night after devouring Pizza, I felt discomfort in my guts and they began to churn noisily. I finally had to hit the bathroom where things began to spew forth. Somehow, all the ensuing cramps must have caused my stomach to rebel and I knew the Pizza was coming back up. Yikes! I had nowhere to put it. The toilet was not an option, due to obvious reasons and my waste can was wicker so that wasn’t good either. The bathtub was the only option so all that I had eaten ended up there.

When all was purged from my system, I staggered to the bed and had to lie down to recuperate from this ordeal. My very sweet husband cleaned up the mess. Bless him.

I do believe remembering this will help me make the correct decision the next time Pizza crosses my mind as a food choice. I’ll never say I’ll never eat any again, but it will be a rare event for sure.

Readers: everyone has a favorite food they think they can’t live without (but you can). What is yours? What food is the one that you crave the most? And can you give it up if you had to?

My Weight Loss Journey Part #1

WEIGHT LOSS JOURNEY BLOG – Defining Moment

In the past 2 years, I’ve lost 50 pounds and people always ask, “How did you do it?” There’s no mystery here, no magic pill, no fad amazing diet, no secret that no one else knows – just good old plain “eat less and exercise more”. Sure, it’s old fashioned and boring, but guess what? It works.

As with many people, my weight has been up and down so many times it’s been more like a jack hammer than a yo-yo. In my youth, I was a tiny little thing and it was a big deal when I finally weighed more than 100. I used to be 5 foot and 1- ½  inches tall which is really short by any standard. Add insult to injury, I find that now I am only 5 foot and ½ inch tall. I shrunk! Hey, Gravity, that’s not fair! I can’t afford to lose that much. Oh, well. Life does that. Which only makes my weight gains even worse.

It all began when I moved from the big metropolis of New York where I grew up, to the suburban rolling hills of the Piedmont area of North Carolina. In the Big Apple, walking is a way of life and while I grew up eating large quantities of hamburgers, French Fries, Coke and ice cream, I remained a scant 104 pounds or so. I was very proud of my 24 inch waist!

Once I hit the South, I bought a car and…walking was no more. I had wheels now! My mother’s good Southern cooking and my sudden lack of exercise caused a subtle weight gain and when I was married in 1974, I was still only 110 pounds, so that wasn’t too bad.

However, cooking more substantial meals for me and my hubby soon led to both of us ballooning up. So began my seemingly constant efforts to get the weight off, which I did. Numerous times. It kept sneaking back on though, little by little.

In 1979, I had been fatter, but was finally back down to 106. Yay! Then I got pregnant and it all went to…well, you can guess. I was so hungry the whole time and I just stuffed myself silly, believing that foolish adage that you are eating for two. BS. You’re just overeating. My highest weight when pregnant was a whopping 148, but of course, it was justified and located largely in my middle and all women are beautiful when pregnant. Sure, it’s a lie, but we like to believe it anyway just so we don’t think we look like whales.

After my son was born, I was determined to lose again, so I cut back and struggled, but after the better part of a year, I managed to tip the scales at 106 again. But not for long. Over time, the fat kept coming back. Obviously, I hadn’t yet quite learned why that was happening.

When I hit 50 years old, I was a tub of lard at slightly over 150 pounds. I had even outstripped my pregnancy weight. Ouch! I decided to get serious and managed, once again, to limit my food and try to exercise some and sure enough, the weight slowly, but steadily came off again. I had lost interest in sewing my own clothes when I had to make tent-like blouse and huge pants with elastic waists. So when I finally got to 126, I got rid of many of my Fat Clothes. Not all, but some. I did well for quite a while, but later got a sedentary job and went back to my old bad habits – too many French Fries, pizza and Coke were probably the worst offenders, but ice cream, brownies and Dewey’s chocolate éclairs played a huge (pun intended) role in my subsequent return to tubbiness. This time, however, it was worse! I reached my previous high, but did I stop there? Oh, no! I kept going and going, like the Energizer Bunny until I found the scale crying out – TOO MUCH! My worst weight became the ungodly number of 177. (remember, I’m very short, so this is quite a lot on my small frame). Yuck! Not only was I back into my old Fat Pants, but they were becoming too tight also! My blouses were stretching across my chest and gaping at the seam. Not pretty at all. At one point, none of my jeans even came close to fitting, so I had to break down and buy a pair that were size 18 and I almost puked at the thought. Yet, I couldn’t seem to get anywhere. I had LALGIB Syndrome. I’m sure many of you are similarly afflicted. It stands for Lose a Little, Gain It Back. We’ve all been there, haven’t we? Then there’s LALGIBAM Syndrome where you And More to the end.

So, January of 2010, as always, how many of us make a New Year’s Resolution to lose weight? Many of us. Every single year. This time, I had an iPhone! I downloaded a calorie counting App – yes, there’s an App for that! This was too cool and it was so helpful. I could put in everything I ate and it would tell me the total which kept me from going over my calorie “budget” for the day. It was working like a charm and it kept me accountable for every morsel that went into my mouth.

I was doing okay, but hit some snags about the time I was down 27 pounds. One, my App quit on me and two, I was having some personal issues that were causing me a lot of stress. Both of these things derailed me from my mission. I could no longer focus on doing what I needed to do. Comfort Food was calling my name and I responded by stuffing myself with it, justifying my need every time. If I felt bad, Food was the answer. If I was upset, Food was the answer. Except it isn’t, truly. I am an Emotional Eater and while acknowledging this is helpful, it doesn’t always curb the bad habits and behaviors. So, for a while, my weight remained in the general vicinity of the 150’s. Not good, but not as bad as it had been.

So what sparked my renewed vigor to get back on the Losing Wagon? Someone took a photo of me from the back. Oh. My. God. I saw that and for some reason, it just…this was my Defining Moment. I knew then that it was time to get severely serious again. How I looked from the rear was just unacceptable to me.

September 3, 2011, I got a new App for counting calories and carbs and resolved to focus on my eating and exercise (which was previously, at best, intermittent for the most part) and I was determined to lose the fat once again.

This time was more serious too, because I had been told I was pre-diabetic and was on 4 medicines at this time: one for diabetes, one for high cholesterol, one for high triglycerides and one for high blood pressure. I hate taking medicines and felt that if I could lose the fat, I could get off of these. That was also a goal that was important to me.

To make things easier, I also bought a kitchen scale so I could weigh my portions out. This has been extremely helpful in order to track calories. Sure, it’s a pain sometimes to have to weigh or measure all my food, but then I know how much I’m eating and can be sure it’s not too much. So I just do it.

Fortunately, not too long after I began my latest plan, my husband asked me to help him lose some too. He was somewhat overweight, most of it in his belly. He also felt bad when he was eating no-no’s right in front of me while I was straining to stay away from such goodies, so he decided to join me.

Long story short, it is now April of 2012 and I am down to 126 pounds and my husband is down 32 pounds to 160. His back no longer hurts him every day too! That’s been wonderful.

Also, I am off all of those medications and unless my future tests come back horrible (which I doubt), I won’t go back on them.

I have gotten rid of ALL of my fat clothes and went on a shopping spree to buy some clothes that don’t look like I’m a little kid wearing a grown-ups’ clothes. I had a bunch of my old jeans TAKEN IN! I have also taken in a lot of other clothes. It is so nice feeling thin and good again. Also, we won’t go back to being heavy because we’ve both learned so much about eating, habits, bad foods and more that we have learned to eat differently for the better and for good.

Besides, I don’t have any more Fat Clothes to fall back on! This is a great thing!

I will be blogging more on this topic as I think of things that might be of interest.

Readers: Have you ever had a Defining Moment? Tell me about it.

Lost and Found: A True Cat Story (Chapter 7)

CHAPTER 7

Sawdust and Sneakers

Sawdust and Sneakers

Sometime after this, when everything was back to normal, Mema began to have problems and thought she had a terrible kind of cold. She would cough very hard all night and day. Doctors just gave her cough syrup, but it didn’t help. They told her it seemed more like an allergy than a cold. She didn’t believe that. Eventually, Pepaw convinced her to see an allergist. She did and found out that she was now allergic to many things: grass pollen, certain trees, dust and yes, cats. If she picked up the cats or had their fur touch her face or arms, those areas would get all red and itchy. Mema was devastated. She loved her cats, but this was a serious problem. To make things better, they bought a large crate and kept the cats in the garage all the time and put them in the cage when they had to open the garage door to go somewhere. This way, they were safe, but not in the house. Mema had to stop holding them and was very disappointed and frustrated.

This worked for a while, but when Mema and Pepaw decided to move to another house with a double garage, they realized this was not going to work well. Also, it was not going to be a good idea to get cat dander in the new carpet. Sadly, they resigned themselves to the fact that they would have to find another home for their beloved pets.

They talked to a lot of people and advertised at the local vets and one day they got a call from a lady that wanted to get a pet for her kids. The lady came to see the cats and agreed to take them. So one day, Mema took the cats to this lady’s home. Mema was appalled. There were four wild kids and one was a girl only two years old. Mema was concerned that they would not be careful enough to be sure the cats didn’t get outside. The front door was right in the middle of the house and the area was somewhat rural. Still, she left them and cried all the way home.

About a week later, this lady called Mema.

“I can’t get these cats to eat and one of them pooped on my son’s bed. My husband is furious. Right now they are under my bed and won’t come out!” she told Mema.

“I’ll be right there,” Mema answered, gathered up the cat crates and some tuna fish, hoping she could coax them out from under the bed.

It took a while, but the tuna did the trick. As soon as Sawdust got close enough to try to get the tuna, Mema grabbed her and put her in the crate. Sneakers was not quite as eager to come out, but he was finally lured out by the tuna fish, his favorite. Mema snatched him up too, but had to put him in the crate backwards as he was flailing around trying hard not to go in the crate. Mema wasn’t going to leave them in this horrible place anyway. She took them home and continued to ask around for a more suitable home for her precious babies.

Fortunately, Mema talked to a girl working at Wal-Mart with her who was interested in getting a kitten. She convinced her she would love these cats and they were already house trained. The girl, whose name was Kendall, agreed and came and took them to her home. However, unlike the other place, they liked their new home with Kendall and her fiancé. She told Mema later that Sawdust especially liked her boyfriend and loved to sit with him and sleep with him. So Mema felt that this was a good home for the cats even though she missed them very much. Cats don’t usually like change, but Sawdust and Sneakers adjusted well to their new owners and lived happily ever after.

THE END

Sneakers in Shirt

Sneakers in Shirt

Lost and Found: A True Cat Story (Chapter 4)

CHAPTER 4

Sneakers

Sneakers

One year, in October when it was close to Halloween, disaster happened! Mema and Pepaw had just gotten back from a long weekend at the beach with Pepaw’s brother Fred and his wife, Jeanette.  Pepaw opened the side door to the garage and they entered.  Mema put her luggage down, picked up Sawdust and took her inside the house.  Sneakers ran under the car parked in the garage.  Pepaw let the garage door up so he could get their bags into the house easier, but didn’t bother to put it down again when all their stuff was inside.  Mema told him that Sneakers could get out, but he didn’t think he would. Ha!  Mema knew he had done it before.  The next thing Mema knew, Pepaw had a flashlight looking for Sneakers under the car, but the cat wasn’t there or anywhere in the garage.  Mema said he wasn’t in the house either.  So everyone went outside to look for him.  Apparently, Sneak had made his way to the back yard, but just when Pepaw was about to get to him, Bruno, our neighbor’s large collie, decided to trot over to see what was happening.  This obviously did not set well with Sneakers and they saw him bolt and head into the woods next door which covered about ¾ acre.

While Pepaw was in the woods searching, Fred was hanging around also with a light.  Mema got the food bowl to rattle to attract Sneakers with food and headed down the road towards Weavil Road.  She spotted Sneak outside of the woods meowing rather pitifully, but just as Mema headed towards him, he took off down the road back towards the house.  Okay, this was a good thing.  He didn’t want Mema near him at first, but then he stopped and Mema was able to pick him up and drape him over her arm, still holding the food bowl in the other hand.  Big mistake.  Mema yelled triumphantly, “I have him!” She was approaching the house when Sneak got very heavy and Mema was losing her grip on him.

“Pepaw! Please help me before I drop him,” Mema pleaded.  “Take the food bowl so I can get a better grip on Sneakers.”

Pepaw reached out to take the cat instead. Maybe Sneakers didn’t recognize Pepaw since it was very dark out by this time, but he started squirming very hard and the next thing Mema knew, he had scratched up her face with his back claws while trying to escape her grasp, bit Pepaw hard in the thumb and they both let go long enough for him to hightail it back into the woods.  This was terrible!  There’s nothing more difficult than trying to find a black cat that doesn’t want to be found in the woods in the dark!

The search was on again.  Pepaw was back in the woods and Mema was trying to stay by the road in case he came out of the woods to keep him out of the street.  There wasn’t much traffic, but there was some at this time so it was dangerous.  After a while, almost at Weavil Road, Pepaw said he had found him.  The only way he could see him was when the light shined on his eyes and they glowed!  However, Sneak had found a very cozy hiding place in a spot thick with brush and we couldn’t get very close.  Mema kept talking to him nicely, but when Mema tried to reach out and pet him, he hissed at her very menacingly!  This was usually a very laid back kitty and they have never seen him hiss before in his whole life, but he was obviously very scared and didn’t want anyone near him at this point.  So after a few hisses, Mema knew getting him was not going to be easy this time.  Pepaw said he wanted to go back for some thick gloves which seemed like a real good idea, so Mema just kept her light on Sneak and talked to him trying to get him to calm down.  Well, as soon as he heard Pepaw rustling the underbrush, he bolted!  Mema never even saw him move, he was just gone again!  It was back to the search.

Pepaw finally found him not too far away huddled next to a tree.  He was behind Sneak, Fred was in front of him outside of the woods trying to distract him, and Mema was on one side.  Pepaw was able to get closer and closer and finally got his hands on him.  Mema quickly laid a towel down she had brought and they put the errant cat on it and wrapped him up inside it.  Mema told Pepaw to just get him to the house while Mema picked up the flashlights, food bowl and sheet that he had left behind.  Mema and Pepaw finally let him loose in the garage where Pepaw cleaned the brush off him and saw he was all right.  As soon as Sneakers went into the house, he was just as sweet and loving as usual and they gave him lots of rubbing and attention.  Mema felt that she was more traumatized than Sneakers was!

Mema put hydrogen peroxide on their wounds and hoped they didn’t have any ill effects.  The cats were indoor cats and had all their shots, but there was still the chance of infection.

Mema told Pepaw never to leave the garage door open while Sneak was out there because he WOULD “sneak” out, true to his name.  And he could be very fast when he wanted to be. This was just the first time Sneakers was lost in the woods.

Lost and Found: A True Cat Story (Chapter 3)

CHAPTER 3

Three Siblings

Three Siblings

Most kittens have their Mommy Cat to teach them the things they need to know in life just like children’s mommies teach them. However, Sawdust and Sneakers didn’t have a Mommy Cat for this. Mema noticed that Sawdust, after using the litter box, would take her front legs and attempt to cover up her poop. This is a normal action for cats. Sneakers, however, did not do this. Whether it was because he wasn’t taught how or because, being a guy, he just didn’t care about cleanliness much, would do his business and just walk away. Mema once tried to show him how to cover up the poop, but to no avail. This was one of the first signs that Sneakers just wasn’t as bright as Sawdust. He proved over and over again that he had missed out on the brains department. He just was not too smart. They often said he was a dumb as a brick. He was beautiful, but dumb.

For instance, the house had sliding door closets. Sawdust was observant and saw just how these doors would move. Mema would come home and notice the closet door in the bedroom was open about 6 inches.

“Now, how did that happen? I’m pretty sure I closed it this morning,” she would remark. Oftentimes, she would then open that door and there, looking comfortable and smug, was Sawdust, hiding inside on the floor. One day, Mema watched and spied Sawdust pawing at the door in just the right way to make it slide. Once the door was open just a little, she was able to sneak inside. Speaking of Sneak, often Mema would close the closet door and leave the house. Upon arriving home, she would not see Sneakers anywhere. Once again, the search for him would begin. Eventually, she would open the closet and Sneakers would race out! He had gotten locked in without Mema knowing he was even in there. Sometimes he spent the whole day stuck in the closet with no way out. Not the brightest bulb in the box, as the expression goes.

The two cats were shy around strangers so when someone came over, the two of them would scatter and hide. Sneakers would sometimes come out and greet the guest, but Sawdust would not. Mema and Pepaw would search everywhere, even under chairs, in closets and under beds. No Sawdust. They never did figure out where she would hide, but whenever the guest left the house, there she would come, trotting out all fat and happy that it was just the family once again.

Sleeping Kittens

Sleeping Kittens

Lost and Found: A True Cat Story (Chapter 6)

CHAPTER 6

Sneakers

Sneakers

Almost six weeks from the day Sneakers got out, we got a call from Bud again. It was a Sunday morning and they had seen a black and white cat around their house as they were leaving for church. Mema and Pepaw gathered up some supplies: a bowl of food and a towel and a net to catch him with. The good news was that they did find Sneakers lying near the neighbor’s house. However, he was so weak from malnutrition that he could not walk! But he was still alive. They wrapped him up in the towel and scooted back to the house.

“He is so light!” Pepaw exclaimed. Sneakers had become a large cat weighing about twelve pounds. “It’s like picking up air,” he added with concern. Sneak had not fared well out in the open.

They took him to the garage and unwrapped the towel. Poor Sneak! He tried to walk, but was so weak he just flopped down unable to move. It broke their hearts to see him so obviously sick.

Mema immediately called the vet, but because it was a Sunday, they were not open. Their voice message gave the phone number for an Emergency Vet in Winston-Salem. They had no choice but to take him there. After this long a time, it was possible he wouldn’t last until the next day. They bundled Sneakers up and drove to the vet. Sneakers was meowing mournfully the whole time. He was obviously in distress.

The vet took Sneakers back for an exam while Mema and Pepaw waited anxiously.

“He is very sick, but to really determine what’s wrong, we’ll need to take some tests. It’ll cost about $400.00,” the vet informed them. They gave permission and waited.

The news about Sneakers was bad, but the vet felt that with care and medicine, he could make a recovery. The worst thing was that he was so malnourished and dehydrated. They weighed him and the poor kitty was only seven and ½ lbs. He had lost almost half his weight during his ordeal.

“We would like to keep Sneakers overnight because he needs to have an IV to try to keep him alive. You can pick him up tomorrow,” the vet told them.

Mema and Pepaw were relieved and yet saddened. They could only hope that Sneakers would pull through.

The next day, Monday, they picked up Sneakers, but had arranged for their own vet to take over his care so they took him there. It was extremely hard for them to leave him again, but he needed a lot of special care from professionals.

“You can come by and visit Sneakers, but we will need to keep him a few days to be sure he is stable and on the road back to health,” the nurses at the vet told them. It felt so strange to visit with their pet for a short time every day, but with each passing day, they could see progress in his condition. He began to eat a little and poop like he should.

Thursday was Thanksgiving Day and they were going to be able to take Sneakers home the Friday just after.

“He’s going to need to be contained in a safe place for a while as his condition is still delicate,” Mema said to Pepaw. They went to Wal-Mart on Thanksgiving Day, thankful that the store was open and purchased a baby play pen that would be perfect to keep Sneakers safe and contained.

On Friday, Mema and Pepaw paid the vet $200 for caring for Sneakers for four days. They dubbed him their “Six Hundred Dollar Cat” and laughed about that.  Sneakers came home and was placed in the play pen. They had medicines that they had to give him which was quite a chore. They had to get a syringe full of the liquid and squirt it in his mouth. Try to imagine this. Sneakers didn’t like it and would squirm and turn his head to avoid it. It took the both of them to administer the medicine. When Pepaw had to go on a trip, Mema did the best she could alone, trying to hold him down and squirt the medicine in his reluctant mouth. Often there was more of the liquid on the floor than in Sneakers!

Sawdust had a strange reaction to her brother being back. She wasn’t too happy about it. She approached the play pen cautiously and when she sniffed Sneakers, she gave out a hiss. Then she walked away. Mema thought that maybe she smelled all the strange odors he must have picked up from his time in the woods. Either that or she preferred to be the only cat in the house. It took her a few weeks to finally stop hissing at Sneakers. She eventually adjusted to his return.

Sneakers didn’t much like the food they were told to give him and would barely eat it, so Mema tried tuna fish from a can. He gobbled that up so that is what he got. Before he was lost, he would eat a little at a time all day, but when he got better, he ate everything he could at one time. Being without food for so long had a big impact on him. Day by day, Sneakers gained his weight back until he was his former size. Because Sneakers would eat everything in sight, they had to only put out enough food for each meal. As a result, Sawdust, who had been a little overweight, lost some of her extra pounds which was a good thing.

It was so sad to see Sneakers try to jump up on the furniture like he used to, but he was too weak for a long time and would fall back to the floor. He probably couldn’t understand why and had to be frustrated. Mema picked him up and he would stay on her lap for hours and hours at a time. He needed help getting down too. However, it was gratifying to Mema and Pepaw when the day finally came that Sneakers had recovered enough to once again be able to jump up on things by himself.

So in the end, it all worked out although Mema and Pepaw had to be extra vigilant to be sure that Sneakers would not get out ever again. They were amazed and thankful that he had been able to survive his long ordeal in the big outdoors. It was, indeed, a miracle.

Shaved Leg for IV

Shaved Leg for IV