Sunday, April 14, 2013


I don't remember the details because it was a long time ago and probably also because it was such a traumatic experience, but I think I made this object

in memory of the night when, during a group therapy session -- at the time I was seeing a clinical psychologist twice a week, once for individual therapy and once for group session -- I suddenly broke into sobs, cried uncontrollably for maybe ten minutes straight and punched a hole in the wall of the therapist's office (later I had to shell out $50 to have it patched -- who knew I had such strength?).

After that torrent of tears and snot I managed to calm down at last and drove myself home.  I went up the steps to my door and found my cat Blood crouched beside it.  Sometimes Blood would push out the screen window in the back and slip out during the day;  I had intended to have it fixed  but never gotten around to it -- but at least he hadn't gone and got himself lost, but was waiting for me by the door like a good little housecat.  I was so glad to see him and I bent down to pat his head, then felt something wet and sticky.  It turned out to be blood.  Blood on Blood.  I crouched down beside him and looked close, and saw big gashes on his side, one going around his body to his chest.  I freaked -- I started crying all over again and carried him inside -- it must have hurt him terribly to be picked up -- and when I turned on the light I realized I could see right inside his chest cavity;  he'd been sliced open.

Sobbing and in full panic mode, I looked up animal hospitals in the phone book and found one that was open for emergency care (this must have been 10 or 11 PM), ironically close to my therapist's office back in Westwood.  I wrapped Blood in a towel, carried him into the car and drove right back to the clinic in Westwood, where I deposited him on the reception counter and continued to sob.

After the staff had taken Blood inside, I collapsed on the couch and tried to collect myself.  The receptionist gave me a box of tissues and I sat there for what seemed an interminable interlude while they worked to save my pet, blowing my nose every couple of minutes until there was a sizable mound of wadded-up tissue on the coffee table in front of me.

Once the surgery was over, I had to leave Blood there until he was well enough to go home.  And after I did bring him home, with drainage tubes sticking out of him, I laid him down on a pile of towels, where he stayed without moving for three straight days.  I was concerned that he might have been too cold on that floor (I was living in a storefront studio at the time), but on the other hand, maybe the cold felt good against the throbbing stitches.  And once he could get up and move around a little, back he went to the vet's to have the Elizabethan collar installed.  It was probably humiliating for him, but he took it well.

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