Cinnamon Update!

Cinnamon had her check up at the Vet Thursday night. Her metal sutures won't be removed until next week, they want the surgery site to heal up a little more. They did say everything looks good though! She's also still on her antibiotic until it's all gone. She has another Vet appointment next week on Thursday at 5:45pm. I'm glad they didn't charge me for the check up, we were in & out of there in about 15 minutes! When we got home I noticed it looked like they tightened a few of the wire sutures that were coming undone from her moving around and stuff. She's also starting to grow fur back on her belly! It will be so nice when she gets the sutures removed. She is still separated from her sisters right now, though they have supervised playtime together. The cage I have for my ratties is a Ferret Nation, it has a locking ramp which splits off the two levels if you need to separate them. Cinnamon's been given a bunch of new nicknames since her surgery; Stitch, Metal Belly, Robo-Rat, Franken-Rat. Hehe. I'm so glad she's doing better, she is back to her old self again & no more bleeding!

Relationship Struggles & Home Sickness.

F.B & I have been having relationship issues lately. The long distance thing becomes a struggle sometimes. And we go through these periods after we've been together in person, where it becomes harder to communicate. Lately we've haven't been meeting as often for our "dates" online on the weekends. Partly my fault. Sometimes I'm so exhausted after a full work week and I want to sleep in on the weekend. Or I'm feeling depressed and don't feel like I can communicate through instant messenger. It's been harder to communicate lately, through email & instant messenger. Sometimes I feel like I have nothing to say to him. It's hard when you can't be a part of each other's daily lives... can't experience all the little things together... it's hard when you have to relate your entire day through email... in order to maintain a relationship, instead of just cuddling up at the end of the day... together.

Our relationship feels a bit stagnant right now... and there's still 4 1/2 more months until my trip back to the Philippines, until we get to be together again. There's also issues we are dealing with; the fact F.B. is still struggling to find employment a year after he graduated college. Stress on me with saving up money for our future and just feeling like we are never going to be together for good... where are we going? I've just been having these feelings lately and that always seems to happen after we've been together and then have to go through the long distance "separation" phase again. It's just been tough the past 2 months and we are struggling somewhat to get back on track... because in long distance relationships it's all about staying in touch and having good communication... it's something you have to work at every day.

In other news, this will be the first time I'll be staying in the Philippines 2 months. My past trips, I've only stayed 3 weeks, which was the limit I could stay on my passport. I'm still worried about my passport... I have to contact the Philippine Consulate in August to make sure they are still mailing it out in September and haven't forgotten about it. (Visa Issues)

Whenever I'm in the Philippines for awhile I'll go through a moment of culture shock and homesickness. The first year this happened first when I got my period and discovered there were no tampons! I was also homesick on Christmas Day, when we went to the mall to have lunch. There were just hundreds of people & familes at the mall on Christmas Day & it was just a bit of a culture shock to me because at home the malls are closed on Christmas Day & everyone stays home with their families.

In January I had a homesickness moment too. It was the first time I was away from my new pet ratties and the previous year I had went to the Philippines my Ferret Nippy had been sick with cancer and when I returned home I had been too tired to see her. When I woke up the next morning I went to say hello to her and she had passed away in the night. So it was kind of hard being away from my new pets because I was afraid of the same thing happening...

I also had another culture shock when I hurt my knee and we were looking for an 'Ace' bandage, I had to explain to F.B. what it was; "Those tan stretchy bandages with the metal clips." before he knew what I meant. (I know Ace is a brand in the USA. But pretty much everyone calls those tan bandages an 'Ace' bandage in the USA.) We finally found one in Mercury Drug, but they are called 'Elastic' bandages in the Philippines, haha. I was feeling so homesick that night we went to eat at Friday's because it was somewhere familiar to me except the price of Friday's in the Philippines is just crazy! We experienced this the first time we went to Friday's in the Philippines, haha. Normally F.B. & I can go and eat at a sit down place for around $10 or less between us. But Friday's is so expensive! My salmon plate alone cost $17! We ended up splitting the bill.

So... I wonder what it will be like staying in a foreign country for 2 months. I'm sure I'll have some homesickness & culture shock moments. But at least they'll make interesting blogs!

Home from the Vet!

I dropped Cinnamon off at the vet this morning around 9am. Around 12pm they called and said her spay was over and the doctor didn't find anything abnormal inside- which means he didn't have to run blood tests on her. He thinks the bleeding was somehow related to her going into heat, but bleeding is not normally associated with rats going into heat so something was wrong and that's why she needed to be spayed.

Mom & I picked Cinnamon up around 5:30 from the vet. She looks so well! She's my hyper active baby again! I wasn't expecting that. They made a tiny incision for the spay and had to use metal sutures since rats can try to chew on them. They only shaved her belly a bit. And it doesn't look so bad.

She has an appointment at 6pm next Thursday so they can check the sutures and see if they need to be removed yet or not. They also didn't charge me for antibiotics because she has the full bottle of Cirpro at home still. I'm supposed to give that to her twice daily still. I also have to keep an eye on her and make sure she doesn't chew her sutures. She looks so much happier today and not as lethargic. And no bleeding! It also didn't cost as much as they were estimating since they didn't need to run blood tests or give me more antibiotics. It was $239.00. I was so relieved about that! I know some people wouldn't pay that much for a "rat" but she's my pet and I love her and I didn't want her to suffer.

I held Sugar and Spice up to Cinnamon to say hello when she got home. Sugar just sniffed Cinnamon, but Spice nuzzled Cinnamon's face almost like a kiss. It was so sweet! They were happy to see their sister, they both seemed anxious today. Of course they will be separated for awhile, but I'll let them say hello like that at least once a day.

Here's some pictures taken a few minutes ago, now she's settled down for a nap. You can see her metal sutures... I've nicknamed her "Franken-Rat". heehee.

Here's some pictures from day 2 at home after her spay. No more bleeding! And she is much more active now and doesn't seem to be in any pain. She has an appointment on Thursday for a check up to see if the sutures can be removed yet.

Off to the Vet...

It's been a stressful past few days. My youngest rat Cinnamon was abnormally bleeding from her female area yesterday evening... it really concerned me because female rats do not get periods even when they go into heat. I called the vet yesterday evening and they told me to bring her over. The vet checked her out they were also concerned she was bleeding from that area. They said it could be a urinary tract infection so they put her on the oral anti-biotic: Ciprofloxacin. They said they would see her in 2 weeks, unless the bleeding got worse.

When I woke up in the morning, the bleeding was actually heavier. I really didn't want to leave her, but I had to go to work. I called the vet around 9am this morning. They called me back and told me she would need an emergency spay. She could either have Pyometra (disease of the uterus) or crystals or stones from a urinary tract infection. But if she's bleeding that's a bad sign. So I have to drop her off at the vet tomorrow to get spayed. All together it's going to cost around $300.00. That's quite alot of money. $200.00 for the spay and the rest is for anesthesia & antibiotics, etc. It's major surgery and they have to put her to sleep for it.

My manager at work thought I was crazy when I told her I had get my pet rat spayed. She said, "You really want to spend that much money? It's a rodent." But a pet is a pet to me. Rats are NOT disposable pets! A rat has as much a right to live as a cat or dog, etc. I know some people do not typically think of rats being a type of pet. But rats are incredibly social, lovable and clean animals. And they have a right to be healthy too! It would be cruel to put her to sleep or let her bleed to death! She's only 3 1/2 months old!

Female & Male rats can be spayed & neutered. Usually females are only spayed in worse case scenarios. I have heard females can tend to have issues with their reproductive system or tumors.

I'm really nervous for tomorrow. When I got home from work the blanket she had with her in the cage had large spots of blood on it. The bleeding has been on & off tonight. She's also been kind of lethargic and usually she is my hyperactive baby. She didn't even come when I called her name, usually she jumps up from wherever she is to run over to me as fast as she can. The vet said she did not need to fast before the surgery so I gave her some cooked spinach and scrambled eggs tonight (iron & protein) since she's lost so much blood.

I am waking up at 8am tomorrow and taking Cinnamon over to the vet around 9am. They said they will call when I have to pick her up sometime in the afternoon or evening. I am going to ask them to call me when the surgery is over also. I actually was able to take off work so I'll be available to pick her up at anytime. My manager wasn't mean about letting me take off, she just couldn't understand why I'd spend so much money on a "rodent". A few other people at work thought I was crazy too... but you get those kinds of reactions when you own rats as pets.

I wasn't expecting such a large expense... so I may have to dig a little into my savings to pay for the surgery. And thank god we've been having overtime at work on Saturdays. I'm also doing some eBay sales this week so the money from that will probably go towards the vet bill also. What can I say... pets are like children sometimes.... I need to get some sleep. I'm so glad I have off work for Memorial Day. I'll be off work Monday-Thursday next week. Everyone please keep me & Cinnamon in your prayers & thoughts for tomorrow. I also want to say thank you to my friends at the Rat Chatter Forums. They are the best!

I got it!

My Mom & I had our tattoo appointment on Tuesday at 5pm. My Mom got a heart tattoo, it was her Mother's Day gift. I got the pink stars on my right ankle retouched for free, because the color was a bit uneven the first time. And then I got my name on my left ankle! It looks so pretty, I love it! I sent F.B. pictures and he thought it was pretty too. It turned out really nice! No more tattoo's for me! Haha!

Taking my laptop to the Philippines...

I've decided I'm going to take my laptop to the Philippines with me this year, since I'll be over there 2 months. I've already taken other electronics with me, F.B. has adapter boxes in his house that plug into the outlets there and decrease the voltage for US electronics. So this way I don't blow out my ipod, cell phone, etc when I plug them in to charge. The voltage is higher over there. I think it is 220v. When F.B. was younger his US relatives were visiting and plugged his Super Nintendo directly into the wall- since it was the US version it blew it out, he's still upset about that!

So today I was able to get a cute little carry on suitcase with wheels. This way I can take my laptop on the plane with me and store it in the overhead. And I'm going to put a small bag inside my carry on bag to take out on the plane and store under my seat, with my books, snacks, sleep mask & sleeping pills, pillow, etc. You don't want to be on a 15 hour flight to Hong Kong without those things underneath the seat in front of you! Then I don't have to keep climbing over people (since I'll be a window seat!) to get access to my stuff. Haha.

I took my Mom out for an early Mother's Day today. We went out to lunch at 'Red Lobster' and then to 'Bath & Bodyworks'. My Mom was going to get her tattoo today and I was going to get my stars retouched since they are healed and get my name on my other ankle, but they were booked solid so we made an appointment for Tuesday at 5pm.

F.B. and I are meeting online for a date tomorrow. It's been a few stressful weeks for me at work and we haven't really been emailing or meeting for dates on weekends. This coming Saturday I have to work 10 hours of overtime, so we'll have to meet on Sunday as well. It's going to be a busy week for me...

Photography & Other News.

Happy May! I started a Flickr account just for my "best of the best" photo's. I really love taking nice shots of scenery and animals. Feel free to check out my Flickr account here! There are 3 albums to the right and all the photos are organized in those albums.

I got some really pretty flower pictures again today!

In other news, only 5 more months until I am off to the Philippines! F & I have been talking. Since our birthdays are only about a month apart (Me: September. Him: October.) we decided this year we'll celebrate our birthday's together by going to Saisaki Buffet with his family and exchanging gifts. Yay!

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