I've always believed that life is defined not by an abscence trouble but the way in which we respond to trouble. Everyone has a harder battle than I do, and we will all face challenges and setbacks in our life. People will get sick, dogs will die, things will go wrong.
The choice is always stark: I can either wring my hands or get moving.
I woke up this morning thinking of Gus and the difficult few days he has been having with us and his megaesophagus. I had this strong, even overwhelming feeling that this was going to be a good day for Gus, a turnaround day, and I mean to make it so.
I got up early, and sat down and went over my notes and decided to make some changes in his diet.
Smaller feedings more frequently.
I'm dropping the chicken broth and returning to a couple of teaspoons of yoghurt for liquidity. I am reducing the amount of EN gastroentric food and increasing the Pro Plan turkey and sweet potato. Also decreasing the rich Royal Canin veterinary recovery food..
Perhaps his diet was too liquid and too rich, We'll know soon enough.
The other big move: I have an angel, unnamed, below, one of the New Mexico Reftalos we got from an artist named Diana Breyer whose studio is in Chimayo. Diane is Jewish and was troubled by the fact too few Jewish angels are available for sale by artists.
She says the first angels were Jewish. So she made some Jewish angel Reftalos.
I have always believed in angels and spoken with them. I think one sent me Maria.
So she made some and gave me one, which now hangs on the door to the Frida Kahlo bathroom.
She doesn't have a name, I call her Deborah
I always talked to angels and asked them for help. "Okay," I said to Deborah, "you're not just a pretty face hanging on an old farmhouse door. Let's get to work for Gus. I'd like some inspiration."
And I felt better immediately, confident and sure about Gus's future. I believe dogs are spirit animals, and when I see that they have lost their spirit – I saw this with Rose and Izzy and Frieda – then I know it is time for them to leave our world and return to theirs.
The only treatment for Gus's esophagus is diet, and so that's on me, there is nothing he can do.
I created a new diet and gave it to Gus for breakfast. So far, so good, it's been four hours. That was farther than we got yesterday or the day before.
Gus has great spirit, he is bright, aware, loving, playful and obnoxious. He is not fading, and is not ready to leave this world. So I have to figure out a diet that will stem these difficult few days. And I will, at least for awhile. I feel it.
And when I waver I can turn to Deborah or call the vet, or the gastro specialist, and just sit down and gather myself. My stubbornness has kept me alive and I'm not into whining or lament. This is not a tragedy or drama, it is just life, and life is what we all face, most people in harder ways than me.
Deborah is already sending me vibes of encouragement. I think I woke her up. And I don't know as I have ever seen a Jewish angel or worked with one. They all seemed non-denominational to me.
To those of you sending me messages telling me you know I don't like advice but have an Aunt Fanny who had nine dogs who died, or a friend Sue who talks to Gus daily. and would I message them and arrange to talk to them?:
Don't do it. Just say no, and follow your good instincts.
It's like teaching young men that no means no. Period. Stop. No excuses.
Those offering support and good wishes, thanks as always.
Gus is in a great mood this morning, and so am I.