OSLI


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My little outside friend

Shoot. Blogging. I completely forgot about it until just now as I was halfway through taking my contacts out. It has been one of those days: for all my good intentions ( and a reasonable amount of effort) I had a reasonably productive day, but still seemed to flounder a bit when it came to making actual progress. I went running and did laundry and got through the dishes but didn’t cross anything off my master list. Made progress, just didn’t complete anything.

Partly I blame the cat.

Not my two pet cats, but the neighborhood stray that I call OSLI (Out Side Looking In). Yesterday we discovered him on the doorstep in the morning as I was seeing the Curmudgeonly Lion off to work. This was not unusual: we often see him in the morning. What was unusual was the fact that he’d been in a fight and his right eye was swollen shut and oozing with… I wasn’t even sure what: pus? mucus? Grossness, either way. At the time I was hurrying to get out the door myself so I didn’t get much opportunity to examine him: not that I would’ve been able to do much to help him. That runny eye stuck with me all day, though.

This morning OSLI was back, eye still running, but slightly open at least. That seemed like progress. Injured though he may have been he was still feeling social enough to let me pet him for a while. I spent a little time keeping him company before I went for my run. When I got back I moistened a paper towel to see if he would let me dab away some of the effluvia. He did, with reluctance and much ear scratching. The eye looked better without all the gunk, but the gunk quickly replenished itself. I’m certainly no expert but this seemed like a good sign: if the fluids were draining then infections were ( maybe) being flushed out. I could only hope.

I have this strange guilty fear about OSLI- that something will happen to him and I will wonder why I didn’t do something to stop it. I can’t take him in since the house is already full of two cats and one Lion, but it’s a hard feeling to walk inside the door and shut him out. My two cats don’t know the privilege that they have: safety, abundance, company, love. I sometimes see a lot of myself in them and realize how much I don’t recognize my own privilege when just on the other side of the door are the hungry and lonely and injured.

And I just don’t know what to do about it. 

For OSLI, I cope by trying to spend a little time with him each time I see him. It’s not a lot and it’s probably not enough, but at least I know that I’ve given him a little bit of love. When the time comes and the situation changes- when he gets picked up by a shelter or gets sick or adopted or just disappears- I’ll still probably carry around a bunch of guilt about not doing enough, but at least I’ll know that I did something.

So anyway, if you’re interested in adopting a cat, I know of a sweetie looking for a home with his one remaining eye.

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~ by Gwydhar Gebien on October 14, 2015.

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