That darn cat

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By Kay Kerbyson

  The cat is killing me. I’ve had my ‘Tommy,’ as I call him, for about 3 years now and the darn thing is driving me crazy. Tommy used to be quiet, and kept a distance most of the time, but for the past 18 months he’s been driving me up the wall. I know some people love ’um, give them a feeling of contentment, but I just can’t jump up and down about mine, even when the darn thing is being good.

  You see, mine has a split personality. When Tommy is being good he’s just lulling me into a false sense of security so that, when he decides to be bad, I don’t see it coming. And then all hell breaks loose. I’m sure others have had the same experience.

  They always look so harmless don’t they? They have those big eyes, scanning you with a piercing radiance. It’s mesmerizing. You don’t want to look, but you just can’t help yourself. And then there’s the loud purring noise, like they’re happy to see you. You lay there thinking, nice cat, good cat, having you in my life isn’t so bad, when really it’s plotting to turn around and bite you. And when it does, it’s like a sharp needle in your arm.

  I’m allergic to Tommy too, put me in the hospital one time. They sorted that out, but which now I’m sure I have a cat phobia. It keeps me awake at night. I lie there thinking “I know he’s going to misbehave. I know he’s going to turn everything upside down again.” I sweat about it for weeks; get all panicky and on edge. Then it all comes to a crescendo. I really think the worst is going to happen and then…the cat is all sweetness and light.

  People tell me to forget about it. “Don’t let the cat get to you.” “Leave it at home.” Even my doctor says it. Yep, she’s a cat lover. “If it’s behaving, why are you still worrying about it so much?” Truth is they don’t have to live with him day in and day out.

  I’d get rid of him if I could. But it’s a trial. The cat is there to test me. Hopefully, one day, he won’t be such a big part of my life. In the meantime, when it all gets too much, don’t tell me I haven’t thought about blowing him up. Hey! Hang on! Why are you looking at me like that? I want to kill my kitty? No! That’s not it.

  Oh, no … I just read back. I think I made a slight typo! I don’t want to hurt my cat. Anyone will tell you, I love my cat. What I want to do is get rid of my CAT, you know my Computerized Axial Tomography scan, Tommy for short.

  You know, the CAT scan I have to have every 3 months. It drives me crazy. When it’s bad it means my cancer’s back. When it’s suspicious, I have 3 months of torture just waiting for the next one. When it’s good, everyone but me jumps up and down. They wonder why I’m not as excited, why I’m not jumping up and down. What they don’t realize is, it’s a constant dagger that hangs above my head.

  OK this one’s clear, but I have another one in 3 months’ time and I’m already sweating about it. That’s what living with a CAT is like. When you have cancer, a CAT is for life, not just for chemo!

  Next month, mixed breed Doctors: Oncologist and Gynecologist - how to keep them on a leash!

Kay Kerbyson is Founder/President of Ovarian Cancer Together! Inc., a non-profit organization supporting those with ovarian cancer. She is also Secretary of the Los Alamos Council on Cancer. Support resources and educational information can be found at www.ovariancancer

together.org and www.losalamoscounciloncancer.org.