calming the beast
it’s pretty clear to us now that those first pretty bad days were pretty bad mostly because of the biopsy. understandably, since essentially a piece of spike’s tongue was cut out and taken off to biopsy.
that doesn’t mean, however, that all is well now. though spike has seemed better in the last few days, eating a ton, attacking us like he loves us, sleeping warmly and soundly, leanne has spoken to the vet about all the (lack of) possibilities and dr. bloom has confirmed that the tumor is simply continuing to grow. spike’s even bleeding again more since his visit to the vet on saturday; i guess they cleaned his mouth out (he obviously swears too much).
at the vet, they removed his pain patch, and leanne has not put a new one on him yet. i think she’s just sort of waiting to see when he declines. in the meantime, he seems pretty happy (though obviously uncomfortable and bleeding…). the tumor’s only going one way…
at least, as of yesterday at last, the sun has been out after days of grey rain – so hopefully he has been able to get out onto the roof to enjoy the sun.
it seems like spike is adapting to the alien growing inside of him – or maybe the alien is calming down a bit. at any rate, last night, i caught him swishing furiously through the catnip, and later he attacked both leanne and me, which we took as a tremendous sign! he was even cleaning himself at one point. and the sun is out intermittently today, so perhaps he is able to take in some fresh air and sunshine.
so it seems we have ourselves a little respite of false security. though in reality, he can’t close his mouth because of the size (and general discomfort) of the tumor (and looks a little looney with his toungue lolling out), he keeps drooling blood, and we keep seeing this large nasty tumor when we go to stuff pills and pain liquids down his mouth. he is clearly uncomfortable, but he is super spike, and seems almost to be adapting.
spike curled up next to us all saturday night to sleep, then we went home sunday to spend the night with wanda. we were back at otivo again last night. spike was quite energetic before bedtime, rubbing up against my art project on the floor, purring like himself and eating LIKE A HORSE, enjoying a nice comb-through to try to clean up his coat (which he can’t clean), and even jumping on leanne’s lap — but not for long, certainly not able to cuddle like Our Spike.
then while we slept last night, he stayed distant, blending into the black fleece by the door. today he doesn’t seem to feel as well.
it was dreary and rainy yesterday, and it’s dreary and rainy today. usually i love the rain. yesterday, we went to look at houses and there was the unspoken difference now: we don’t need the outside access. there is a family member now missing from our plans.
neither leanne nor i feel much like working today. spike has been leanne’s steady companion for his entire 11 years. i wish i could fully be there for leanne but he’s been my companion for 6 years, and i feel this demise acutely. so many of us do; the whole otivo crowd. others who don’t even know his predicament yet will be touched by this. i think of kesin: to him, spike and wanda are a unit – just like leanne and moya – they don’t exist singly.
i know every cat owner in the entire universe thinks their cat is more unique, clever, and special than the rest, but in spike’s case it of course really is true. spike is the only cat i have ever known to go on walks with people. he used to walk leanne down the street and then wait all day for her to return to that spot when they lived on bainbridge island. he would walk me down the block in noe valley. he pants like a dog in the car. only he hasn’t struggled nearly as much with his recent trips to the vet. it’s as if he knows it’s different now.
it’s in the back of our minds, all the time, this horrible thing ahead.