He staggered around like a drunk when he got home from his near-death experience at the vets, his fur looks dingy and I swear to God the cat has dandruff. For a while there he was even docile - letting everyone who cared to pick him up...
He's starting to get a little bit of the feisty back. He's got an appetite. Although we've been kind of warned that diabetic cats don't like to jump any more - and he's been awfully weak anyway, he's lost half his body weight and his flanks cave into his sides in a manner that the smoothly rounded body of the Murphy that we once knew never did in his life before - but he's managed to get up onto the bed where he always sleeps, and also on his little observation platform shelf fixed to the windowsill.
And today... today he played.
It's back to it being only me who is allowed to pick up His Excellency - he was mine first and I guess he is used to this, he got trained into it early, I cup one hand underneath his front paws and on his chest and put the other hand behind him and he sort of climbs into it himself with the back feet and allows himself to be picked up. He nestles, with me - he crosses his paws in a suitably benevolently dictatorial fashion and just purrs gently (and let anyone else try this maneuver and it's HISSSS! SPIT! GERRAWAYFROMME!) Well, today I did that - picked him up, cuddled him, babytalked him a little, and then he squirmed a little to let me know that I should now put him down, please, thank you very much. So I did, and while I let him down on the couch with one hand I tried to get a pair of old trackpants with a drawcord waist out of his way.
And he saw the draw cord end bobble, the thing they put on to prevent the thing from migrating into the waistband, slide past him.
And my beloved geriatric diabetic cat with his poor shaved paws where the IVs used to be... reached out and batted at the cord. And then did it again. And then I pulled it past him once more, and he did it again. He played with that thing, PLAYED with it like a kitten for several minutes, and I was laughing and crying and all set to grab him up again no matter WHAT he thought of the idea and hug him tight. That cat has more heart and fighting spirit than any ten others of his kind.
We have no idea how long the reprieve will last. But for now... for now... he *played*.