This is Lira.
She is the first pet I ever had (fish do not count as pets). Lira came to us 12 years ago, the day after I moved back to Maine after graduating law school. She was a tiny little fluff ball of a kitten. She was born in a barn, found by a family whose small child carried her around by the throat and given to us. She kept us up at night, meowing her little meow. When we allowed her into our bedroom, she jumped up on the bed and bit our arms.
We named her after Italian currency, since she's a money cat. But really, she's more of a Drachma or a Ruble. She's a gorgeous cat, with the personality of a really angry snake. Most people try to pet her, and she hisses, growls and slashes at them. We have a "warning, this house protected by an attack cat" sign, and people laugh. Until they meet her. She is about as friendly as The Joker in Dark Knight.
Before Meg was born my father-in-law suggested that given her nasty ways, we should give her up lest she hurt our new baby. Lucky for us, she is amazingly tolerant of the kids. She has enough smarts to walk away from them instead of using her claws (she's double pawed). She's moved with us 5 different times. She hates riding in the car and the vet. At our last vet, they wore large leather gloves in order to examine her. Chain mail would have been a better option.
Saturday night Doug notice that Lira's eyes looked cloudy. Very cloudy. A quick Google search had me concerned enough to call the vet as soon as they opened yesterday and the kids and I took her in today. She treated the vet to a session of growling and hissing, so he suggested we leave her and he'd sedate her to examine her. Before we left he listed off the possibilities of what could be causing the cloudiness: kidney failure, herpes, AIDS, leukemia or an infection. The vet called back a while ago and said that he believes she has an infection and we're going to treat it with drops. He said she appears to be otherwise healthy, although he's going to run blood work given her age. I'll take wrangling my cat to get drops in her eyes over explaining to my kids that she's dying at this point.
So in a couple of hours we'll go pick Lira up at the vet. She'll probably growl all the way home in her cage. Tonight Doug and I will wrap her in a towel, don the hockey gloves and mask and administer her drops. I wouldn't have it any other way. She was my first baby. Hopefully it's just an infection and she'll live another dozen years, or at least a few more. She may be cranky, but she's my girl and I love her.