Tag Archives: death

Lucifer Sam, January 5, 2003 – July 9, 2013

Lucifer Sam on his final day. "Now there's a look in your eyes, like black holes in the sky."
Lucifer Sam on his final day. “Now there’s a look in your eyes, like black holes in the sky.”

Lucifer Sam on his final day. “Now there’s a look in your eyes, like black holes in the sky.”

Words cannot describe the black hole in our hearts that his leaving us has created.

The last days of his life he was no longer the happy dog he used to be. It was time to let him go.

Dreams the past few days

Darn, I wish I could remember this dream better. I know I remembered it when I woke up and thought, “that’s pretty funny, I’ll have to write it down” and then went on to forget the funny part about it. All I can recall is that it had Mitt Romney in it. Why do I have this guy in my dreams? (Here’s the other dream I had with Mittens…caution…opens to the previous old version of this blog) It’s absolutely ridiculous. It’s not like I’m a supporter…hardly! Have I had Pres. Obama in dreams? I don’t think so. Oh wait…I did. But why Romney? No explanation at all.

In the dream he was an instructor, maybe even an art professor. Well, that makes sense. Although I’m sure Mittens lacks any creative talents (robotic mannequins aren’t known for genuine creativity), I’m sure he’d be up there in the compassion zone along with most of the art professors I’ve known. That’s sarcasm. Yeah. Good Times, as Leon would say.

Maybe it will come to me later.

Now on to the next dream. It is very hard to explain, and I tried my best to tell Stan about it after I had it on Monday. I was going to some function where Tim would be there. It was a combination of a hospital and a funeral home, a church and a restaurant. I was not with Stan. I was traveling in a cab along with some young women. We were bringing chairs with us. When we got where we were going, we were told that we wouldn’t need the chairs because they had enough. We were all standing around a long table that was a cross between a restaurant table and an operating table. Tim was across the table from me and I waved at him. He waved back and said hi. He looked the way he did in the mid-90s with longer hair. I didn’t get a chance to talk to him because there were so many other people taking up his time.

I miss Tim so much.

Dead Friends DREAM

Weird dream–Tim was standing on a tall utility stool, like the height of a barstool, but utility grade metal, like the kind that were abundant in the art building @ CSU. He was fixing something on a wall or ceiling. He says “I saw your friend Brian.” I then started asking him questions like “how did you know it was him?” or “how do you know Brian?” or “where did you see him?”
Continue reading Dead Friends DREAM

The Electric Chair

Very disturbing dream last night. I dreamt I was found guilty of murder and was going to be put to death in the electric chair. It happened all so quickly too, found guilty, sentenced, and then they start preparing me for the electric chair immediately. It didn’t even have time to sink in what had happened until they were telling me to turn my foot over so they could strap it up correctly (weird). I don’t even know who I had supposedly killed! I then start pleading with the women…who were more like nurses preparing me for an operation…to stop, that I was innocent, but obviously, that didn’t change their mind. I think I woke up crying.

After the dream I was in sort of a netherworld where I felt like it was all very reminiscent of something…then I remembered…oh, yeah, when the state republican senators passed the Budget Despair Bill. I felt like they had sentenced Wisconsin to death, and all the pleading the populace did wouldn’t make them change their mind.

Maybe it was because shortly before I went to bed last night I was reading an article at The Progressive about a Wisconsin schoolteacher who was depressed about the Bill passing and killed herself.

Well, yesterday, Wisconsin got a stay of execution as a Dane County judge temporarily blocked the bill from taking effect. But if a few Republicans won’t change their minds, then it’s just prolonging our agony for a short while more.

No protesting for us today…Stan works and then does a lit drop with his Union for Joe Parisi (County Executive) and Joanne Kloppenburg (Wisconsin Supreme Court)…too bad because the forecast is for 52 degrees and sunny. Last Saturday we froze our asses off again. I even wore pajama pant bottoms under my jeans. The chilled wind was just horrendous and we had to spend forever waiting for busses (the one going to the Square was a half hour late!) We might go Monday, but I don’t know. Monday, April 4 will be a big protest rally, so fortunately Stan has that day off. I’m working on more signs, too.

Not a Good Way to Start the Year…and a DREAM

We got a call this morning that our friend Tim passed away last night. This was no surprise, as we were expecting it after his brain hemorrhage a couple weeks ago, precipitated by his infection a couple weeks before that.

I had a weird dream with him in it last night. But after that dream, I had an even weirder, more disturbing dream. But it needs some background and explanation. So now before the dreams, here is the real life background info, that I should’ve written down last year, but I wasn’t exactly in a writing mood:

On New Year’s Eve/Day 2009/2010, I was awoken in the middle of the night by the sound of someone screaming “help! help!” outside. I couldn’t move, but I heard someone running up or down the steps next door, probably a younger and more awake neighbor looking to see what was going on. I think Stan slept through it. Soon after, I hear sirens, so I finally get up to look outside. The old guy who lived alone across the street had a fleet of 3 vehicles: van, SUV, pickup sort of vehicles…one of those WTF sort of things (this is in the city…on a corner lot…not in the country). A pickup with a camper shell had somehow caught fire under the hood, and by the time I got dressed and looked outside, I saw flashing lights and smoke emanating from the truck. The old guy wearing shorts stumbled outside to view the damage, then back inside, never to take care of the problem. The truck sat on his lawn for the next few months, never hauled away or repaired under his watch.

A couple months later in March on a Saturday night, Stan and I were watching a movie and I heard sirens. They stopped in front of the old guy’s house. Paramedics went inside and emerged a while later carrying the old guy on a stretcher. We figured he won’t be coming back. We were right. Several weeks later he died.

For many, many years prior to this incident, I would have creepy dreams about the old guy…that he was watching me and could see me inside my house. This was impossible…he never opened his drapes to look out his window…and we have a jungle in front of our front window, so it would be hard to see through all our houseplants even if he did. Once I dreamt I could see him on the top floor, and he was sitting up in a hospital bed. I don’t know if this was before he was taken away on a stretcher or not. But all these dreams took place from the safety of my own home, watching. I never actually went over there in any of the dreams.

For the next few months, a daughter of his and her family would come over and clean up little by little, hauling big bins of trash outside, and then eventually renting a large dumpster. But first they got rid of the 3 cars, including the one that had caught fire. Some young guys came over and in an afternoon disassembled the entire thing for parts and hauled it off. By the time the dumpster rental had expired, they were still coming over every weekend or so to clean up some more and to throw away more stuff.

I knew that he didn’t have a good relationship with his family…one daughter, the youngest, basically left and never returned, except to pick up a piece of furniture, and then her car wouldn’t start as she was trying to leave…something that would happen to me. There were two older daughters, and I don’t know which one was attending to taking care of the situation. By the time we came back from our vacation in August, we didn’t see them come over to clean much anymore. The house hasn’t been sold…nothing has happened with it. From the outside, it looks the same as it’s always looked…clutter in the front porch, old refrigerator on the back porch, closed drapes on all the windows. Who knows what’s going on inside.

Last night or early this morning, before we got the news Tim had passed, I had a dream that I saw Tim. He was sitting in a chair in a hospital, sort of slouched, but he was awake. His skin was rather grey and his lips looked blue, but he was alive. I asked him if we could see him and talk to him, but he said now would not be a good time because he looked awful. I said that didn’t matter to us…I was just glad to see that he wasn’t comatose anymore.

I woke up from that dream, and went back to sleep. I had another dream. It started out very realistically. I was sitting in the living room, and look out the window and notice that there is a light on in the windows across the street. I assume it is the daughter and her family come to clean up some more. But it’s New Year’s Eve in the middle of the night…why spend the night doing that? I saw motion inside…there were lots of people there. Were they having a party? I don’t know why, but I went over there. There were three women, probably his daughters, and they were all sleeping downstairs in the living room, like a slumber party. One had pulled out a sleeper couch, and the other two were sleeping on a very long old fashioned sofa. The room had wallpaper and in the corner of the wall was a large blood stain with splatters. It was scaring me, and I asked them what that was from. One of the women starts to tell me something, but it doesn’t make any sense, so I figure she does not want me to know what it is, or it is a sensitive subject or something. I keep staring at the blood stain. And I wake up.

I’m not surprised I had a dream about Tim the night he died. People say that happens when someone dies you are close to. They come visit you. I’m thinking he must have been on the other side at the time I had the dream. I hope he doesn’t forget about the house in Kenosha where we’ll all meet when we’re all gone.

As far as the dream about the old man’s house across the street? I don’t know. But I’m sure it’s connected somehow. I thought when he died someone in my family would be next, like it was an omen. I guess Tim was as close as one could get to a brother for someone who has no siblings. We were born in the same hospital.

I’m Back–The Worst Trip. Ever.

I’ve been back for over 2 weeks now, actually. The “vacation” was grueling, especially the first part. I’m not even going to get into interpersonal things…I’ll save that for never. But let’s just say the past two months have been full of close calls.

First of all, let’s get into something that happened even before I left on vacation. Something that happened but I didn’t even write it down in this journal because it was so incredibly terrifying at the time. I don’t even remember the day…I think it was a Monday? July 26th maybe? Jasper had just gotten his rabies shot so we decided it would be safe to take him to a dog park. We went to our favorite dog park at the time, Warner Park. We like it because there is water. There were some large dogs there and he was getting a little trampled, but nothing bad. Eventually all the dogs left and it was just Stan and I and our dogs. We were sitting on a picnic bench, Jasper sunning himself like he enjoys doing, and all of a sudden Lucifer Sam, who had been sitting with us, decided to just get up and head toward the exit gate. Just like that. We thought it was odd, but we took it as Lucifer Sam telling us it was time to go. Then some people came with lots of dogs, a woman with a bunch of little fluffwads and her daughter with two larger dogs. It was those two larger dogs that immediately headed toward Jasper in an aggressive manner. I tried to pull Jasper up by his harness, but it was difficult, and he swung around on his harness and was screaming. I eventually got him into my arms and I was completely in shock. Fortunately, no blood was drawn. I was shaking. Stan bopped the aggressive dog on the nose…not hard, but enough to tell him “cut that out!” The woman, the %*^#&, was staring at us with this evil disney witch glare. As if it was our fault. As we exited, she said something like “small dogs should go in the small dog area.” We didn’t respond. What a moron. One has to exit via the large dog area anyway, which is where the incident took place. She was just a nasty piece of work…letting a pre-teen manage two large (unbehaved and uncontrolled) dogs on her own while she walked her precious pack of multiple fluffballs. I know this is getting into sterotypes, but it didn’t even seem Madison. It seemed Hollywood. And you just knew there was a divorce in there somewhere. Nasty Piece of Work. On a funny end note, as our minivan was pulling out of the parking lot, we saw one of the precious fluffwads break free of its fluffpack and escape under the fence. Preteen was in charge of retrieving the fluffer. Poor little dog probably wanted to get away from its awful life with Queen Evil Glare.

I cannot go to Warner Park now. That incident spoiled it for me. We’ve been going to Token Creek now because they have a nice small dog area. Jasper had a very nice day there this past Friday. He met two Bichon/Shi Tzu crosses (a coincidence…two separate parties, unrelated and unbeknownst to eachother arrive at the same time with the same kind of hybrids). And he’s met nice large dogs on walks, so we’re trying to undo any fear of other dogs (especially large dogs) he might have had since the Warner incident. I don’t know who was more scared though, him or me.

Oh, and the smartest act I might have ever done in my entire life was done on August 4, the day before I left. I backed up my computer.

Anyway, the vacation. Or so some people thought. “Oh, you’re going to Colorado? How fun!” Um….not really. It’s not that type of vacation. Uneventful first day, except the desk clerk at the motel in Lincoln could join the Crusty Club along with Queen Evil Glare. First she tells me they don’t have a room, even though I made a reservation several days in advance. Then, when I can’t get an internet connection and go down to the lobby to see if there is a problem with their wireless, she was very curt. “Just click the button and accept the terms.” I couldn’t even get to that point…I couldn’t even get a login screen. %*^#&. Weeks later, I check my Wyndham rewards and see I was never credited for that stay. Called up and told them, said they’d credit me. Week later, still no credit. Had to contact Wyndham and deal with some Zombies. Very odd. Finally got the points.

Iowa and Nebraska seemed very lush, but as soon as we got into Julesburg, I immediately felt desiccated. It was dry and hot. I was drinking mass quantities of water and sports drinks. It was that way all the way to the Fort, and even worse there because of the strange practices of Coloradans.

OK, what is the deal with Coloradans?–at least the ones we stayed with, and we stayed overnight with three different households in three different parts of the state and were guests for a few hours at another. I swear, they are brainwashed by something because they all behaved the same with windows and summer air. There must be some kind of odd propaganda in the news there that tells people without air conditioning to SHUT THEIR WINDOWS during the hot part of the day. WTF? OK, it’s hot in Madison too but rest assured, my windows are WIDE OPEN and we have a fan and ceiling fan going. We NEED FRESH air. We need circulation. I’m sorry, but that cool night air you let in the early morning before isn’t cutting it at 4pm when your windows are closed. This is crazyland. Four different households. Same behavior. It’s gotta be something in the water. Or the propaganda. I felt like Elaine in the Seinfeld episode where they’re in Florida with Jerry’s Parents. PLEASE OPEN A WINDOW!

Stan and I got some things accomplished over the weekend in the Fort. We took a couple morning bike rides on Sunday and then on Monday. And that would be the last of the bike rides during that trip. We bought some delicious Palisade peaches from a roadside stand south of town. On Tuesday we headed up to Rocky Mountain National Park, Trail Ridge Road, some place I probably haven’t seen for over a decade. We took the dogs and our laptops with us. As I was trying to load my camera’s flash card at the top of Trail Ridge, my MacBook Pro started acting odd. I had to shut it down. It never started up again, not there, and not when we got back down to Fort Collins. Try to enjoy the mountains when your computer is dead. You can’t. It’s like I’m lugging this lifeless body of a computer on a trip with me. It’s like Weekend At Bernies, but with a computer. It’s odd. The irony is that we had just been talking with Bill a few days before, and he had asked if we had to replace our hard drives on our laptops yet, because he had to. Weird. Amazingly, I found an authorized Apple service provider in Old Towne (oh, do I HAVE TO add that “e”?). It was convenient. At least I didn’t have to go to Boulder. I dropped it off and would wait 3-5 business days for it to be fixed while I did other Fortsy-ish things before we headed to the Western Slope.

In the middle of the week I’m feeling really drained. Lots of stress. Family stress. Computer dying stress. General stress.

Friday night we go out to eat with Bill. I get a call before the food comes. It’s from the Mac place. The prognosis isn’t good. Looks like my hard drive can’t be saved. They’ll try, but it leaves me with a sick feeling and unable to eat as much sushi as I had planned to.

Saturday we decide to go up Colorado 14 as far as we can get. Cameron Pass is beautiful. I know I had probably been past that way 35 years before with my parents. But I couldn’t remember it at all, for obvious reasons. It was as if I was seeing something with new eyes. Past Cameron Pass was a basin which contained the very Cheneyesque town of Walden, which seemed more like Wyoming than Colorado. I know I’d probably been through Walden before too, but I didn’t remember it either. However it’s rather unforgettable. But not in a good way. It had this weird opposite effect on me. Usually, I feel weird in the mountains because there is no farmable land. I know that sounds odd coming from basically a more urban creature such as myself (I guess I would be counted demographically as urban rather than rural, even though aesthetically I don’t think I’m really that definable in any of those categories…I posses no real urban, rural or suburban distinguishing traits). Once I leave mountains and get on flat or slightly hilly farmable land, I feel better. Safer. But Walden was farmable…mostly hay or winter wheat. But it frightens me. I feel much safer in the mountains as we head back toward Cameron Pass. There’s a Visitor’s Center in the mountains. It has a hummingbird feeder. It makes Stan and I decide to get one when we get back in Madison. We get back to Fort Collins. I check my email on Stan’s computer at Panera (we need to use Panera in Fort Collins as neither of our laptops have internal modems and cannot check mail on my mom’s dial-up). I’m not feeling very hungry. I just eat some Panera bread. That night I get sick. I get very sick.

I am in severe pain in my stomach. I force myself to throw up, hoping it will make me feel better. I throw up all night. I’m hallucinating…thoughts, random thoughts keep running through my head. Snippets of life from my past, from my present. Stupid thoughts. Irrelevant thoughts. I’m hallucinating but I don’t have a fever. It’s 97.7°. I’m wondering if I will die. I throw up all day Sunday. I eat nothing, I only drink water. I throw up all Sunday night. I wonder what would happen with my health care if they have to take me to a hospital since I am from out of state. I’m hoping maybe I should just die. Before we left on vacation, we had gotten a letter from the parents of someone we knew from undergrad school–CSU. Our friend Brian had died. We hadn’t seen him since the late 80s. He moved back east. We moved to the midwest. We lost track of eachother. He found us on the internet about 8 years ago, wrote us an email. We wrote back, but never heard from him again. His parents wrote us that he had a serious illness. He witnessed 9/11. He moved back to Colorado several years ago, unbeknownst to us. He died a couple weeks after we lost Plato. I wondered if people come back to Colorado to die. I wondered if I would die since I am there. Maybe some people come back to Colorado because they love it. But when I’m there I hate it. I don’t want to die in Colorado. I would be a failure if I died in my parents’ house.

I finally cease throwing up Monday morning. But I still cannot eat. My abdominal muscles are in bad pain from so much vomiting. I can’t sit up. It hurts to walk. As each day goes by, I start to sit up more and walk more. Stan buys me some jello and chicken soup. By Thursday I am able to walk slowly but still don’t want to go anywhere. Stan picks up my computer from the repair shop. Fortunately, there was no charge since it was still under AppleCare (two years exactly!), I guess there are still some bright spots in my life. It had a hard-drive-ectomy, and a new hard drive put in that had 50 more gigs because they were out of the old ones. They supposedly salvaged all my files, but not my apps. Well that’s pretty much completely useless. I would have to create a new account. I decided to save all that for when I return to Madison. I’d have my Time Machine backups there (smartest thing I ever did). I’ll just continue to use Stan’s laptop to check my email until then.

Friday morning we leave Fort Collins for Montrose. It’s a nice August day, and not a snowstorm in sight (unlike other times when we travel in the fall). We take the opportunity to take Highway 6 to Loveland Pass rather than go through the Eisenhower tunnel…stinky, claustrophobic icky tunnel. A very pleasant alternative. We take pictures at the pass. Very pretty. Some annoying touristas, but pretty scenery nonetheless. Back on I-70 on the other side, we see an overturned FedEx truck. Had we gone through the tunnel, we might have been part of that accident, or at least witnessed it. Having gone the long way, we were well enough removed in time from it happening. I hate I-70. It’s even worse in ski season. It’s just one of those many things that makes you swear off Colorado if you lost all family ties to the place.

By the time we’re in Montrose, I’m feeling better. Still not up for a bike ride though. We don’t do the typical Montrose day trips like we usually do. No Ouray-Durango-Cortez. Just a short trip to Delta to buy some roadside local peaches, Palisade to buy some jarred fruit and stuff and a drive into the strange Escalante Canyon until it got a little creepy and the roads got a little mini-van unfriendly.

Once nice thing about Colorado is they have this really great cricket population with nice slow classic chirps that sing me to sleep every night. In Madison we have tons of Orthoptera. It’s like a symphony of various hoppers and trilling things and crickets and “bicycle insects” (they sound like an old 1970s 10-speed bike clicking) and the beloved katydid. But not much of the nice, slow deliberate chirping of those classic big fat black crickets. Despite the hellish days on this trip, a lone minstrel cricket would sing me to sleep every night.

We leave Montrose the following Thursday. We do NOT take I-70 back and we do not go back to Fort Collins on our way out of Colorado. We had decided that this would be a good time to take the Highway 50 trip we’d spoken of many years before, “The Loneliest Road.” I almost misnamed it “The Father Road,” which would be more apt in our personal experience, but I see that honor has been given to Highway 30 (the only way to cure the Nebraska Interstate Boredom Blues). Anyway, lonely is good. Lonely means no traffic, and that is such a comfort cruise compared to I-70. Anyway, I had this strange curiosity about Rocky Ford.

Stan lived in Rocky Ford when he was a baby. His father taught at the high school there (what are they, the fighting melons or something?). I’d never seen southeastern Colorado. And now was my chance. It’s in a river valley, and it’s a green oasis compared to the rest of Highway 50 in and out of the town. The tiny town was so lush and dark with trees. We stopped at a large fruit shop and bought melons to take home with us. Stan wished he’d grown up there instead of Yuma. Yuma is rather windswept and dried-up feeling. Rocky Ford is sort of a cute, whacky little shady town. A melon mecca.

We stayed in Lamar that night. Seemed like a real cowboy kind of town, which put Stan in the mood for takeout Beef Brisket from the Hickory House. Can ya get any more western than that? The next day we drove through Kansas. I don’t think there’s any non-boring way to go through Kansas. We stayed on 50 up until Hutchinson…then we headed northeast to Kansas City. We stayed in Lawrence for the night. Ordered Chinese. The next morning as we were trying to find a highway to get us around Kansas City, we saw a field of sunflowers. Those were the first sunflowers we’d seen in Kansas for the entire trip. There were cars parked by the side of the road and people were photographing the sunflowers in the early morning sunrise mist. It was a truly odd site. I wanted to photograph the people photographing the flowers, but I thought that might be too postmodern. Anyway, it was a bit difficult to stop, and I didn’t have a computer to load the picture into.

As we got into Iowa, we stopped at a “Iowa Welcome Center” which doubled as an Amish Gift Shop full of craftsy stuff and food. We bought some jellies, but had to fight through a crowd of rather obnoxious southern-accented oldsters on a (probably casino) tour bus. The cashier told Stan it was nice to see a “civilian”…whatever that meant. We did not stop at Harvey’s Greenhouse in Adel as we usually do. It was still daylight when we got home. We had to fight through the overgrown pumpkin patch that had taken over our yard.

I know I’ve probably forgotten a lot of things. I’ll add them as I remember them. I’m feeling better. It was NOT salmonella–trust me. Stan and I ate the same things. He got sick several weeks before with similar symptoms. Was it a virus? Who knows. It was awful though, and certainly not psychosomatic, but I’m better now. It seemed that once we got out of Fort Collins, I continued to improve. Maybe it’s just a cursed place.

The Cycle of Life

Sleeping Jasper
Sleeping Jasper
After Vladimir our 2nd cat died in November of 1998, I couldn’t bear being without a grey kitty. We adopted Caligula only a few days later. After Hieronymus our fawn pug died, we got Lucifer Sam 3 weeks later, which I thought was pretty soon to find a black Pug. After Persephone, our 3rd cat died, we waited over a month to get Apollo, timing it conveniently with Stan’s time off for a “Kitten vacation.” I was fearing it would be much longer before we could get a Boston Terrier due to our plans to be away in August. I knew we either had to get one soon, or we would have to wait until September. The thought of being without a Boston was tearing me up inside. I was so depressed every day. Our other animals were sad and missing him too.

I know that getting another animal does not replace the animal that precedes it. It is silly to think such. Each animal is unique and has its own personality. But what it does do is bring our focus from depressed to engaged again. It continues the cycle of life, of our life together with our animals…cat, pug, cat, boston, cat, pug, cat, boston, and so on.

I feel it is important that there are 2 of each. Having not had one like myself growing up, I know how much it sucks. Even though Lucifer Sam is a little freaked out by Jasper right now, soon they will be couch snuggle buddies together…a little pack of two. Caligula was a hiss-monster with Apollo at first, but now they sleep in touching symmetrical shapes on the bed together. Plato grrrred at Lucifer Sam when we brought him home and snapped at his head. We had to keep them separated for several days until Plato acclimated to him. But after that, they were buddies until Plato died.

When I have my 2 sets of 2, I feel much more balanced, like life is normal. And I can remember all my other animals that have moved on fondly, but not have to cry myself sick about it.

Crying My Eyes Out

I had started crying my eyes out over a month ago when Plato first showed signs of going downhill quickly. I was preparing for that day for a while, yet it always comes too soon, and Stan and I wish we could both hold him just one last time. However if we had that last time, we’d always want one more last time after that.

I keep thinking of all these things to write down, short remembrances of him, like the day we brought him home, and when he (and we) discovered beds and how he was “good in bed” (he just lied down and slept, unlike our then-pug, Hieronymus, who would chase around on them and do a bad doggy potty thing).

I remembered when we travelled with Plato when he was still just a few months old to go to Stan’s Dad’s funeral, and then when he was about a year old to go up north to the UP to see the Paulding lights. I remember a photo of him with Hieronymus and a gigantic mushroom.  I remember his silly tricks like “go get the hair tie”, and how he would spin around on the futon and stop and stare at my paintings on the wall, as if the metallic cosmos-like reflections did something to his imagination.

I remembered how up until recently he would snuggle with me and Lucifer Sam on my futon under a blanket in the middle of the day.

I remember so many things, too many to recount.

In the early morning of  Thursday, May 27, 2010, I awoke to a horrible dream. I dreamt that Stan had a bunch of blue crushed up crystals that looked like Azurite. But I knew what it was, it was Cyanide. He said that we could take it because life had gotten horrible. At that moment, this strange feeling swept through my body, still dreaming, and I started to see our situation from a strange and scary perspective. I did not want to die, yet I was frightened that Stan thought it was so awful. I told him no, I was not ready, that if I was in terrible physical pain I would consider it, but not now. I woke up and cried my eyes out.

That night we had put Plato upstairs in the air-conditioning to try to calm him and cool him, yet he still barked all night. Stan slept with earplugs. I could still hear him. Early in the morning when Stan got up for the early shift, I recounted my dream, and tried to get him to stay home. See, I’m an oracle. Oracles speak in strange words and images that don’t always make sense. He went to work anyway.

Plato would not settle down that morning. He was constantly asking me to take him outside to relieve himself, he was constantly panting from pain. He was maxed out on the highest dose our vet allowed us to give him of the painkillers. Even though he had regained his appetite a bit and was eating regular dog food and his poo was more normal-looking, he was crying in pain more and more when one tried to pick him up because he could not lift himself up.

Stan called from work and we discussed it. We realized he was trying to tell us he wanted to go…it was time. He made an appointment with the vet for later that afternoon, and around 2:45-3:00 pm he left this world.

I still cannot stop crying