The Light at the End of the Tunnel

Okay, strictly speaking not we’re not at one month until Friday.  But can’t wait any longer because we have reached the light at the end of the tunnel.

Tate has improved just about every single day the past week by leaps and bounds.   His appetite is more normal, he’s off the obsessive paw licking (although he still goes after the incision), and he’s stopped giving me those spooky stares.

The only really kinda “off” day was two days after chemo, he slept more than usual.  In his bed, in the bedroom, away from everyone which he never does.  But no other side effects.  (yaaayyy)

Here’s a partial list of his astonishing accomplishments (if you can indulge me for just one minute):

Day 21 – He scratches the door to be let back in!  Balancing on two legs!

Day 22 – Balances on his butt to scratch behind his ear with his remaining hind leg!

Also on Day 22 – Play bow with Loretta (but wisely decides this is not a good idea yet…smarty-pants.)

Day 23 – Tries to scratch behind the other ear but there’s no leg there to scratch with!  Figures out a new way to scratch that itch!  (Although he prefers Dad’s roughhousing scratches, so sometime he wiggles his semi-stump just to get Dad to scratch him…smarty-pants-plus.)

Also on Day 23 – Steals Dad’s T-shirt, “Look at me!  I’m such a bad boy!  Now you have to chase me!”

Day 24 – zzzzz…..

Day 25 – Walked all the way around the big block!

Day 26 – Visited Rowdy and didn’t avoid him!

Okay, I could go on but you get the picture.  Not to say he’s 100% but he’s himself again.  For a few weeks there, he was miserable because he felt crummy, wanted to play but couldn’t muster any energy and on top of that, he couldn’t figure out why he was always in trouble (so much of his treatment felt like punishment).  At least that’s Dad’s view of things and I think he’s right.

So when I look back, 2 months ago, we got the cancer speech, ending with “Oh, and if you don’t do anything, you will decide to euthanize him in a matter of weeks because we won’t be able to manage his pain.”  And I’m looking at my bouncy, waggy, shiny 4 year old dog, going “Wha-a-a-a?”

Frankly, I think that would be a shock to just about anyone.

But we have come out on the other side, not making too many missteps, not too many things we would have done differently.  I was reminded again that “This too shall pass” applies to the good seasons in life just like the bad.  Tate was always a refuge for us, a carefree respite from all the bad stuff life throws at you.  Hugs and pets throughout the financial distress, the fractured relationships, the grave diagnoses, the loss.  But then Tate had the grave diagnosis, so now the season is a little less carefree.  But we’re here, older and wiser.  Enjoying sweet hugs and pets all the more.

I can’t say where we would be without Tripawds.  Thanks for listening, and for sharing, and for letting me vent here so my two boys (husband + dog) wouldn’t have to bear the brunt.  : )

P.S.  Blood work is in, but I don’t know what it all means…doesn’t matter, it is what it is.  I’m just so happy that Tate’s happy.

P.P.S.  Colleen, where are you?

Author: tatespeeps

Tate came to us in October 2007, was diagnosed with histiocytic sarcoma in February 2011, had a hemipelvectomy on March 15, 2011, and left us on November 28, 2011. He was 5 years old.

9 thoughts on “The Light at the End of the Tunnel”

  1. Tate’s happy. The family is happy. We’re happy! This is a great post! It’s details like this that will help others going down the same road. Thank you.

  2. Very cool. So happy for Tate and family.
    Good to see that Tate is doing a great job of training ya’ll.
    Night before last Maddie was sleeping on the couch beside me and started dreaming, her invisible leg was just a running and twitching to beat the band.

    I love all the details you added, the indulgences 🙂
    Thanks for sharing this update.

    Keep up the good work Tate….and Mom 🙂

  3. I LOVED this story. Very descriptive and so touching. You expressed the situation very well and I applaud your brave decisons. Not any easy decisions, but we work with what we are given.
    So happy to see the curve upward and onward. Little cutie.
    Keep us updated.

  4. I can hear the “Joy” in your voice. What a blessing that he is doing so well, I am so glad for you guys. One day at a time, it is all we have. Enjoy you furry guy!

    Love and Hugs!

  5. sounds like you are enjoying life again – always a good sign. thanks for the update, make sure you don’t skimp on the medicinal napping!!

    charon & gayle

  6. We’re happy for you too Tate! Leap! Bound! Leap some more! And be sure to tell us about it so everyone can see how there IS indeed hope after amputation.

    Things are looking up and it’s time to pawty. Keep on keepin on 🙂

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