I am in no way equating to my current temporary battle with ptsd with that of people who have had real and horrific trauma in their life. This is more of a ‘oh shit, wait, no, stop’, light-weight, in my control kind of ptsd…and it has to do with the actions of Lucy.
If you’ve been reading the blog or following my Instagram account then you know Lucy’s face. Her cute little puffy cheeks, gleaming eyes, and expressive whiskers are super duper cute. But she also has a gnarly feral streak from her hectic youth. Now what happened last week wasn’t even any way remotely caused by this feral streak as it is something that all cats are wont to do.
The night time zoomies.
Let me set the scene for you:
Approximately 12:30am, Jonathan had come home earlier that night from hanging out with friends. I was seated on the middle cushion of the couch and he had nestled in on the left end. Normally, he’s on the far right side and I’m on the left.
Lucy usually gets the zoomies if she’s in a playful mood, or if she’s just gone and used her box. What are the zoomies? She gets a wild look in here eye, and literally zooms around the apartment. Typically this is a east-west loop from the bathroom through the hallway, across the living room rug to the front door. Once reaching the door, she usually either runs into it and yowls or immediately flips a u-turn and runs the path back to the hallway. This is repeated 2-3 times depending on if there’s something to distract her on the route: toy, kitchen noises, outside noises, etc.
On this occasion she had made one pass into the living room and back into the hall way. We were mindlessly sitting on the couch chatting away about the day figuring she would take another turn through the apartment and then settle in for the night for a cat bath next to the heater. WRONG.
Instead of her diagonal path to the front door…she launched herself towards the couch…the middle of the couch…where I was sitting…landed on my face and used it as a spring board to scramble her way to the back of the couch.
Now back to her feral-ness: we are unable to clip her claws.
Spazzing cat + my face + speed = not such great things.
A back paw caught my face in just the right place as to cause a decent scratch on my upper lip and a serious step forward drew her paw down into the left corner of my lower lip and gouged me pretty bad. This all happened very quickly and I knew the moment she touched me I was bleeding.
Right hand immediately went to my face to apply pressure as Jonathan hurried to the bathroom for the first aid kit…we had 1 gauze pad left and a few large band aids. I sat on the couch a few moments just trying to stay calm, unsure of how bad she had got me. I had knitting in my lap, so I made the move to the bathroom. As I spit out a bloody mess that had pooled in my mouth I could see that my lower lip had already started to clot. A bright red, misshapen, shiny blood clot. Blood is so, so red.
I grabbed the gauze pad from him as soon as he ripped it open. I gave zero shits at this point about clean hands because I just had to get something on my face. He then placed a butterfly on my upper lip to keep it from splitting wider.
I’ve never had my blood drawn at a doctor’s office. The worst bloody noses I’ve ever had as a kid have always been contained easily. I’ve never had a head wound. This was a head wound. When people say your head bleeds the most, they’re serious. I got dizzy. Jonathan helped me to the bedroom where we switched out the gauze pad with a large band aid. He threw on some clothes and headed to the local 24 hour grocery for supplies.
Before he left I mumbled for my phone, which he begrudgingly brought into the bedroom for me. The possibility of infection is high on the list of concerns at this point because 1: cat paw and 2: cell phone. Concern #2 I managed by having dexterous toes. Being able to use your toes is a good skill to have, and no it’s not because I watched Kill Bill vol. 1 as a child. I sent him a text, without touching the phone with my hands. He was already at checkout on is way back. He ran.
While he was out, I checked the band aid pad a few times to see if I was still bleeding or if the clot had done it’s job. Things seemed pretty stable. In the mirror I could see the scrape on my upper lip and knew it was going to leave a visible mark. It went vertically off centered from my cupid’s bow down 2/3, getting deeper. And my lower lip? Indiscernible under the clot, but from the way it felt I knew it was a pretty deep puncture at the very least. It felt like I had been punched in the face with the tiniest of hands. Cat paw sized hand.
Blood was crusted around my nose, my chin, and my mouth. So I used a sanitary makeup wipe to clean myself up a bit. Back on the bed I heard rapid footsteps of Jonathan running back to the building. He came back with a new box of gauze and a bottle of isopropyl alcohol.
High alert now downgraded to a mild twinge of pain.
Jonathan was pissed. I was…pretty calm throughout it all actually. It wasn’t Lucy’s fault that this happened. She wasn’t maliciously targeting me and my face out of anger or spite…like her usual bites/scratches. I’m not mad at her at all. She was just being a cat. But, this does bring back to the surface that we can’t have any other animals or a baby until her natural life span is spent. We can’t have friends she’s never met before over to the house. So, until then she’s our precious fur-baby and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Lucy was in the dog house for two days: no snuggles, no cuddles, no special treats. We ignored her. I’m pretty positive she could smell my blood and the tension in the apartment and knew something bad had happened. She tried to sneak into the bedroom the first night to check things out and was promptly shooed away. Two days of sad kitty face.
It’s been a week now and my lips are almost 100% back to normal. I’d say I’m at a 97%. I do have a new crease on my upper lip and the left corner of my lower lip lost the scab a few days ago and is a little tender, but workable. All in all, I can brush my teeth, eat, and drink without any discomfort. There’s no mark above my lip where she had grazed her claw. Yay no visible scar!
So what’s with the ptsd claim? I’m hyper-sensitive now to her zoomies. =( I don’t mean to, but I’m yelling at her to stop when she runs around the apartment, regardless of time of day. Not the greatest thing to do, but I find that I can’t stop myself.
Wide-eyed kitty, zoom zoom, mrowr. Stttaaaaaappphhh!!!!