The day came when I had to have the big "snip-snip. I had fasted from the night before and Mama drove a few blocks to drop me off at the vet's clinic on Sunset Blvd. in the wee hours of the morning. She wanted to beat traffic as the area around the Hollywood Bowl would soon turn into a bottleneck of epic proportions with everyone leaving at the same time. "Were they all going to the same place?" as she was trying to make sense of the L.A. traffic, a beast with a life on its own.
She had the vet confirm for the fourth time to do pre-anesthetic blood work. He assured not to worry and that he would call her if there was anything. She looked into my eyes and pointed in the sky. "Look, before the sun goes down I'll be back to pick you up. I love you so much, my little Batman." A tear rolled down her cheek. She kissed me and left.
As she was making her way up the 101 the phone rang. The vet's number showed up on the display. She hit the brakes hard - a nanosecond later she would have rear ended the car in front. She wanted to know and implored about the results for the pre-anesthetic blood work. The vet finally got a word in. He assured her that everything was in order. "Really?", she asked over and over. "Yes, really! Except that Batman's not a boy. He's a girl!" It took Mama a breath or two. "Batman's a girl?". The vet explained that during pre-check he was trying to locate the testicles, to see if they had dropped...well, there was nothing. And since Batman was a girl it was too early to spay her. "Could you come and get her?"
After the initial shock wore off Mama picked me up. "OK, you're Mama's girl!" It took a little getting used to but eventually Mama changed my name to Willow (she couldn't do Batgirl). Willow meaning resilience, bending with the wind, she thought it made sense. And the litterbox was gender neutral so there were no problems sharing with Charlie and Mina.
Three months later I was spayed. And after the surgery I felt so good - lots of pain meds - I was playing with my stitches. I pulled one out. That's when Mama put a stop to it. At first she wanted me to wear a cone, but I was jumping around like a buck. Mama was afraid I'd tear more of my stitches, so she tried the inflatable Elizabethan cone (E-cone). But I was fighting that one too. So Mama thought of a workshop she had attended where she learned about the TTouch wraps to help soothe anxiety and promote healing. I allowed my humans to put on the bandage as was not around my neck, and the fabric was stretchy and not unpleasant. Mama put a small piece of gauze around my incision, and the bandage helped protect me from myself.