plato caligula lucifersam apollo

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


Lucifer Sam's lump was a low-grade fibrosarcoma. It is locally-aggressive but will not spread to other areas like organs or lymph. It had limited infiltrated growth and was fully excised. (These are the keywords I quickly jotted down while on the phone). My vet conferred with someone at the UW (oncology lab?) regarding the tumor and she said he said there was no further treatment (like chemo for instance) needed. We will need to have the site (upper right forearm) examined every three months for a year and a half and every six months after that.

This is good news. Cancer is scary, and this literally popped up over night.

As I watched mosquitos bite my Pug while taking him out to go to the bathroom today, I felt so glad that he is protected by his monthly heartworm pills. It is too bad there is no pill to cure cancer, but it makes me wonder why anyone wouldn't give heartworm medication to their dog in a mosquito-ridden climate like Wisconsin in the summer?

Most children bury their parents, but for those of us who are "animal parents" instead, we will always inevitably bury our children.

Now that the Lucifer Sam situation is under control (he gets his stitches out next Monday), I think it's time to start looking for a kitten.


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Lump Removal

Lucifer Sam had his lump removed today, and now he is very sad. He gets that way whenever he's anaesthetized. He also had his teeth cleaned and a loose molar pulled. We won't know the status of the lump for several days or so.

Stan and I are planning on getting a kitten after he has healed. We will not be going to Colorado. There have been too many expenses with trying to save Persephone, her euthanasia and cremation, and now with Lucifer Sam's operation. So what we'll do instead is use Stan's vacation time to stay home, work on the house, and introduce a kitten to the household. Maybe take some short trips around Wisconsin. We've wanted a chance to see Wisconsin in the fall and it seems like we're always gone when the colors are the best.

Under normal circumstances, I would really want to travel. I love to road trip. Had it only been just Persephone's passing, I think we would've done it. But now with Lucifer Sam problem, it's just put me over the edge.

I've cried every day since Persephone went away. I haven't cried yet today, probably because the pug has my emotions consumed right now.

LOST DVD Season 3 won't be out until 12/11. I thought it was yesterday. WTH?

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Saturday, September 08, 2007

Bad Things Always Happen at Once

Last night, I was petting Lucifer Sam and found a small pencil eraser-sized lump on his upper right forearm. This is a few hours after we put Persephone to sleep.

We were able to get a vet appointment this morning. They aspirated the growth and found some fast-growing cells that may or may not be cancerous, so the vet figured it would be best to get it removed. It may or may not be a mast cell tumor, it may or may not be a benign cyst, but better not count on the latter just to be safe.

Strangely, after seeing the vet, I'm not as worried as I was last night. I had a horrible night and couldn't sleep and felt horrible stress and fear all over my body. I cannot eat much. Hey, that's a good thing, pants aren't as tight.

Lucifer Sam will have surgery for its removal on Wednesday. He'll have his teeth cleaned then too, as long as he'll be under anaesthesia, it's best to get that out of the way.


Friday, September 07, 2007

And Then There Were Three.

It's strange the patterns that animals create. Stan and I went through various permutations of cats and dogs in our life: 1985: cat; 1986: cat cat; 1991: cat cat dog; 1991: cat cat dog cat; 1996: cat cat dog cat dog; 1998: cat dog cat dog; 1998: cat dog cat dog cat; 2001: dog cat dog cat; 2003: cat dog cat; 2003: cat dog cat dog. That last permutation, Persephone, Plato, Caligula and Lucifer Sam seemed the best. Everyone got along so well, there were no tifs or rivalries, as each of those pets had come into our household when we had at least one cat and one dog, so they adapted well. They could be then divided into other permutations: the old animals (Persephone and Plato), the young animals (Caligula and Lucifer Sam); the solid-colored animals (grey Persephone and black Lucifer Sam) and the white bibbed and booted animals (Plato and Caligula); and of course the cats (Persephone and Caligula) and the dogs (Plato and Lucifer Sam).

Now there is a new permutation. They are unable to pair up, as now there are only three. They are the boys, two dogs and a cat. Caligula seems to ft in so well with the dogs--they are all the same general size. They each have something that distinguishes them...The Pug is the heaviest. Plato is the tallest. Caligula is the fattest. But they're all around the same general size. And they look like a pack. Three Amigos. The Good, The Bad, and the Snuggly, and all three share those three different qualities at one time or another.

We had Persephone put to sleep around 4pm today.

I don't know what will be next. It's a bit odd me being the ONLY female mammal in a house full of males. Males, when neutered, do seem to make the best pets though. But I'm not against getting another female cat either. I'm also indifferent to color. (It must be short-haired, more long-haired cats due to allergies). I'm in no hurry. I think maybe a vacation will be therapeutic. We'll pack up all the boys and travel, and not worry about leaving a sick cat at home who has to be medicated.

I held her in my lap as the vet injected the needle. I could feel all the tenseness and stiffness leave her body as she went limp, and I was glad I did it so she wasn't so sad anymore.


September Update

I simply cannot work on what I had planned on today, so here's an update on my life and thoughts as of late.

I had an eye exam last week, and to make a long story short, they suspect I *might* have glaucoma. They did a visual field test and got baseline photos of my eyes and I need to schedule another appointment in a couple months. Of course, I could just have a large optic nerve, which could resemble glaucoma. The only other indicators I have is somewhat high blood pressure, but I take medication for that. I am not dark skinned (I'm as visually white as they come), I'm not over 60, no family history, and I'm not extremely nearsighted (the eye doctor even said main problem is my astigmatism), and the numbers from the pressure check are normal. I'm not explaining any of the technical aspects of this, so if this medspeak is baffling, google it. Life sucks.

Persephone is dying. I spent $400 at the vet's the other day on exam, blood tests, and subcutaneous fluids that we have to administer (no fun) to prevent her from totally dehydrating because she is eating less and less. Stan accidentally poked a muscle this morning, and she seems even more uncomfortable now, but I don't know if it's that as much as she really just wants to go. She's refusing food, and hiding in a difficult spot under the couch/futon. She will be missed, and we will have only 1 cat, Caligula, after she passes. It's been 22 years since I only had 1 cat. Persephone did make it past 16, however. Plato is now 11 and Caligula is 9. They are all Virgos, however we don't know Caligula's exact birthdate as he was a rescued stray.

I was very undecided as to whether we'd make it to Colorado this year or not. Even last night, as Persephone did seem to be responding a little better to food and the rehydration, I thought maybe she'd stabilize a bit, but it would involve having to stay home to take care of her and certainly not leaving her to be fed by our neighbors. But as I watch her now, I don't think she'll last the day.

I've been riding my bike as much as the weather and time permit, and that I do enjoy. I like finding new places to explore, but we usually have to drive to an interesting bike path and take our bikes with us. It's hard getting up to speed as I haven't ridden for nearly 20 years. They say exercise will make you feel better and less depressed. Well, physically, yes I do feel better. I feel like I have more energy, but almost too much. I'm having problems sleeping, and this happened before my diagnosis and before Persephone taking a sharp downturn. If I exercise one day, I won't be able to sleep that night. I'll be able to sleep the following night if I don't exercise. I also feel more depressed, especially on the days I exercise. I guess that's to be expected, as I seem to be a reverse reactor. If a drug or procedure or whatever is supposed to make you feel one way, it does the opposite to me...allergy medication gives me hives, marijuana makes me anything but mellow.

I'm looking forward to LOST Season 3 coming out on DVD on 9/11. It's the only thing I am looking forward to lately, and I'm not looking forward to it nearly as much as I was a few months ago before all this shit happened.

Most women when they are depressed go shopping for clothes. I buy Yankee Candles.

I watched a 20-year old Charles Manson interview on MSNBC, and now I'm convinced he is the chimp that George W. Bush was separated from at birth. The similarity in their speach patterns: cadence, phrasing, accent, is simply amazing. Close your eyes and listen to either of them and it's hard to tell them apart. I don't know what it is, it's not simply a Texan accent otherwise all Texans would sound that way and they don't. Manson didn't live in Texas that long, in fact, I can't find much about how long he was in Texas other than he was arrested there in 1960. There's something else, perhaps a messianic complex, a savior of the world, holy crusade and apocalyptic vision they both share, plus those beady little simian eyes. I just can't get over the similarities. Dan Abrams (MSNBC 8pm CDT) is showing snippets of the interview, and MSNBC may show the full hour-long interview again at some point. Watch it if you can, it's simply amazing to think about Bush while watching and listening to Manson babble. The main difference other than Manson is over a decade older and more than half a foot shorter, is he is responsible for fewer deaths. The irony of that.

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