It’s been kind of a rough year so far.
Near the end of last year one of my cats, Remus, started having some issues jumping on chairs, etc. I took him to the vet, he had what seemed like a mild ear infection, I got drops, took him home. During the holidays I gave him the drops (not easy), but he steadily seemed to get worse.

In January I had to put a new engine in my truck – I live on a mountain, and buying a new 4WD vehicle that I need in the bad weather (and for gardening) was more expensive than that. I was snowed in multiple times but finally was able to get Remus to a pet neurologist.

The exam, after meeting for a long time, was inconclusive (she was almost an hour and a half late, too, which didn’t make us happy). Since he’d just had an ear infection, the neurologist thought it was fairly likely the infection migrated to the inner ear and the swelling was pushing on the part of his brain that helped with coordination. (He was now walking like he was drunk, which is called ataxia.) Steroids had helped a little but without him being anaesthetized and having his ears checked with a scope (expensive), or having an MRI to check for lesions/tumors (more expensive), it would be hard to say and even THEN, she said, there was no guarantee they’d have a clear diagnosis.

She put him on antibiotics that she thought might be good and it was a 30 day course – the minimum needed for a severe infection like this one could be – but of course without a culture they wouldn’t know for sure (see the scope above) that the medicine was the correct one to target it.

So the steroids and anti-b’s seemed to help a little – he’s grooming more, drags his toy around some now – but his bathroom habits are, to be kind, a bit unconventional. Now he has plateaued again – much better than getting a lot worse to be sure – and I’m not certain what to do. MRI, new anti-b’s..? Plus she discovered a heart murmur, so he needs to have chest x-rays to look at it before he can undergo either of those tests.

To have more regular income, I started working part time in January as a bookkeeper for a restaurant a neighbour bought. It has turned out to be super chaotic and far more time consuming than promised – and much more stressful, with erratic employees, a CPA who quit and some liquidity issues. I get texted on weekends, called at 8-something AM on all sorts of things… very randomizing.

I am still writing here and there but it is more in drips, so I’m trying to evaluate where I am and considering my options, including things like Patreon and switching jobs, which will REALLY upset my neighbour but what I signed up for initially bears only a slight resemblance to the reality here – and I’m not even getting paid that well! I am finishing Chapter 38 at around 127,000 words. So I am trying to scratch it out.

Tell me about your year so far and your hopes for the rest of it! (Besides me finishing “The Void Wept”!)