Thursday, October 05, 2006

Many thanks. More prayers needed.

Ken the Dad here. Thank you to all who are praying for Tilly and sending her your best wishes. But sadly, we are in need of more prayers here at the Tower Hill Mob -- this time for Mom Kate.

Kate has been fighting heart disease since she was a child. She has a genetic condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy that causes the walls of her heart to thicken and stiffen. She had open-heart surgery in 1988 and is on her third pacemaker. But the unavoidable fact is that Kate's heart doesn't pump very well, leaving her feeling constantly run down and tired.

She has managed the disease well and does not let it define her life. But sometimes, it catches up with her. This past week has been one of those times.

Along with the cardiomyopathy, Kate has in the past year developed atrial fibrillation, an irregular beating of the upper chambers of the heart. Millions of people with AF live perfectly normal lives. But with Kate's already weakened heart, it is a double blow.

Her doctors had been talking about transplantation. But recent tests gave good news -- that is still an option for years away, if ever.

The problem now is congestive heart failure -- a buildup of fluids in the lungs and body due to the heart's inefficient pumping. The symptoms are swelling of the legs, coughing, weakness and difficulty breathing.

I'm telling you all more than you probably care to know or than Kate would like -- she doesn't make her illness an issue. But Tuesday night we had the worst scare in the 15 years we've been married.

Kate could not stop coughing as she tried to go to bed. Sitting up was no help either. Those moments when she did stop coughing, she sounded as though she were trying to breathe through a straw slumping the last bits of drink from a cup.

We went to the emergency room Wednesday and Kate was admitted. The doctors will try to get rid of the excess fluid by increasing her dose of diuretics. She will be fine and may be released today (Thursday). But it has been a frightening and difficult time for us here, first with Tilly, then with Kate.

We appreciate all the friendship and prayers our fellow cat lovers have offered. Kate gets the greatest pleasure following the stories and antics of her furry friends. She finds the concern you all show for each other very uplifting.

I do as well. Tilly was my cat before Kate and I were married. Some day, I will tell you all the best Tilly stories from years gone by, including such follies as "You Don't Have to Spay an Indoor Cat" and the classic "Frozen Chicken Bowling Ball."

Thank you for all your concern for our little Tillycat. Please keep Kate in your thoughts as well.

Thank you again,



Karen said...

We send you lots of thoughts and prayers. They thought my mom had congestive heart failure so I understand it all too well. You are all in my thoughts. You are in one of the best medical cities so that should be a big help.
Butterscotch's mom

Eric and Flynn said...

I am so very sorry to hear that Kate has those heart problems.I hope that all goes well and they release her from the hospital today.
I will keep her, and of course Tilly too, in my thoughts and pray for them both.
Jackie (Eric and Flynn's mum)

Gemini said...

purrs and headbutts. I am furry glad things turned out okay for Tilly. But it is worrisome about Mom Kate. We hopes that she starts feeling better.

Grr, Midnight & Cocoa said...

Oh no! Of course we'll all be praying and purring for Kate as well as Tilly. Be well - hugs and purrs to both of you!
Grr, Midnight & Cocoa

Fat Eric said...

Oh, we are sorry to hear about all the problems. We hope Kate feels a bit better soon. It is good that all the cats and their people can support each other. Best wishes for both her and Tilly - would love to hear more about the "Frozen Chicken Bowling Ball"!?!?
Fat Eric and mum (another Kate) in London

KC said...

o, poor Mom Kate. she be too worried 'bout little Tilly. i's be purrr-raying fur hers, too.
fanks fur keepin us posted, 'n i's told efurryone on tha blogs ta purrr-ray fur both Mom Kate 'n Tilly as well as fur Daddy Ken 'n Toby.

Purrs, purr-rayers 'n luv paws...

momsbusy said...

a family is a team effort 100% of the time. so we will add the entire tower hill mob to our prayer list.

can't wait to hear the stories from tilly's early years.

ML (Mary Lynn) said...

Received this from Danielle, Jake & Spots Mommie (she cannot access blogs at present):

Please send along my thoughts and prayers to the Tower Hill Mob. As I still can do nothing from work. I also lack their email. Thank you very much.

The Meezers said...

oh my goodness - I had been so worried that I had not heard from Kate in a few days. My prayers are with her for a very speedy recovery. - Meezer Mom Mary

Victor Tabbycat said...

Wow, when it rains, it pours. Our best wishes are with you right now. Mom's dad has two arty-fishal heart valves, first installed 14 years ago, replaced last year. Now he's gotta pace maker an congestive heart fail-yur, too. Scary stuff. Take good care of yurselves an eachofur! I prescribe fur and purr therapy. It nefur hurts!

Emma's Kat said...

We will definately keep you in our prayers as well!

Smeagol & Strider (Mystery & Gizmo too!) said...

We're keepin' you all in our purrayers.

THE ZOO said...

purrayers, headbutts & sandpaper kisses to you all for this ruff time your going thru. we hope both Kate and Tilly get better soon.

Patches & Mittens said...

All our heartfelt purrayers go to Miss Kate! We did not know any of this. We also send lots of love and kitty hugs and best wishes for her. Also, lots of love to Tillie.


DEBRA said...

More purrayers coming your way from the ManxMnews group. we were glad to hear better news about Tilly, and we will continue to keep her in our purrayers, but will add Miss Kate,

Abby and the gang

nels, ed, nitro, and/or xing said...

oh, dear, oh dear! we are so furry sorry to hear this, dad ken. please kiss & hug dear mom kate from our mom, and pass along our softest purrs and warmest sandpaper kisses to her. what a champion she is!

we will purrrrray and purr for a long, long time tonight for her speedy recovery and an excellent prognosis. and extra strength and peace of mind for you!

please give tilly and toby extra lovin's from us, too. we are proud to be your furriends, and hope for the best efurry day for all of you.

nelson, edmund, nitro, & xingxing, and mmm (missouri meowers' mom)

George, Tipper, Max & Misty said...

My thoughts are with you, Kate. I've had heart disease for about 5 years now, but so far it's being controlled by 2 pills a day. I might face surgery in the future and hope I can do it as bravely as you.

Crews' Mom

P.S. Hope Tilly is still doing well.

Rascal said...

Please know that she is in our prayers. The Cat blogging community is such a blessing, and as a part of it, Kate has been a blessing to us too.

Catzee said...

Purrs an purrayers!

Pumpkin said...

Purrayers and purrs sent along with healing rainbows of light from Hawaii to Kate and Tilly. Hope the medicines help you feel better.
Linda (Pumpkin's momma)

Anonymous said...

Headbuts and plenty of load purrs. We hope Mom Kate will feel better soon.

one of us said...

Okay lots of purrayers, foofs, and healing vibes from the Poiland Tribe Gets better efurryone

Ella's Mom said...

We will be sending up purrayers for Mom Kate and Tilly. Plenty of purrs and headbutts from Ella and me too. We all hope she gets well soon.

Derby said...

Lots of purrayers for mumKate. My mum says you live in a town with good bean VET places.

brandi said...

You ALL are in our purrayers! Tell mom not to worry too much about Tilly and take it easy. We know that's hard, but tell her to TRY. Healing thoughts are coming!

brandi's mom,

And gentle headbumpies and purrs from me,too,

Hot(M)BC said...

Oh gosh. We had no idea! We'll definitely keep Mom Kate, and Tilly, and all of yall in our purrayers and thoughts.
Boni,Sanjee, Gree, Pepi, Mini and Mom Robyn

Happy-Go-Lucky said...

We'll keep you all in our thoughts and prayers and make sure we keep up on all the "antics" that occur in our house.

P.S. There are rumors that we are expanding in the feline sector, A la House Panther style.