Today marks a year since I brought Raven home. She’s a great dog, so smart and so happy all of the time. Gracie has been a great calming presence to her & likes her company. Raven tries to herd Ernie (the cat) not so successfully. Ernie likes the attention most of the time. Bert, my sick kitty, is finally coming around, although that may be more because he’s sick and not so much because he’s accepted her presence. Raven loves them all and is delighted to be part of the pack.
My sweet kitty Bert has had some health issues lately and we’ve gotten to know our veterinarian pretty well since he’s made many trips for care in the last few months.
The vet performed some exploratory surgery on his bottom lip and chin 10 days ago and sent some tissue samples off to UGA for examination. We got the word on Thursday that the tissue was malignant carcinoma.
When the vet operated on him, he removed all of the suspicious tissue that he could see, so we are hopeful that he got it all and that Bert will live several more years. Bert is not as handsome now as he is in this picture above, but he is still just as sweet as ever. <3
Got really terrible confirmation today when I took Bert in for a final check up from his cancer surgery…..I noticed on Sunday night that his mouth didn’t look right and woke up Monday morning crying with the realization that the cancer was back. The vet confirmed it in today’s visit.
So now I must explore some options…..If anyone who reads this has had a pet with cancer, I would love to hear about your experience.
I will be taking Bert in for an oncology consult with a cancer expert, hopefully, next week and will go from there…..
Needless to say I am sick about this latest development. Right now, Bert is happy, eating well, and feeling pretty good, so it’s really hard to think about what is going to happen to him in the future. I just can’t bear to think about watching this beautiful, happy boy succumb to cancer.
I scheduled an appointment with a cancer specialist for Bert for this coming Thursday, but over the weekend, the tumor on his lip grew quite a lot.
Last week, when I discussed options for Bert with the veterinarian, I was given 3 options: a more invasive surgery, chemotherapy, and to do nothing. I had hoped to explore the veracity of chemo and then make a decision, but, given how fast the tumor is growing, I am concerned that the window for a surgical solution is closing rapidly, so I called the vet yesterday morning and told him that I thought we should pursue the surgical option as soon as possible.
So this morning I dropped Bert off at the vet’s office and sometime today he will be operated on again. This time the vet will remove part of his lower jaw (partial mandibulectomy) in the hopes of removing the cancer.
UPDATE: 2/27/2018 Post Surgery
The vet called me after surgery to let me know that Bert was okay. He texted me a few pictures.
Bert got through surgery okay, but stayed overnight at the vet’s office. He is home now and appears to be hungry, but is having some difficulty eating. He has to learn a new technique for eating….
Bert is struggling to eat, but he seems to be doing okay. His tongue hangs out of his mouth and he doesn’t have much of a lower jaw so when he tries to eat his tongue gets in the way. I have been syringing water & watered down food into him. It’s a very messy business and stressful for both of us.
So far, I think I’ve managed to get his meds in him and keep him hydrated, but haven’t gotten much food in him.
Tonight we wrapped him in a towel & Mark held him tightly. I was able to put some soft food on my finger & get it in his mouth. That was a little encouraging & tomorrow we will try to get more food into him.
A religious leader stands up and confesses that he raped a teenager when he was in his 20s and the church gives him a standing ovation. He committed a crime and his congregation gives him a standing ovation! Where are the consequences for his criminal behavior? Are the consequences washed away in forgiveness?
“Religious leaders use forgiveness theology as a cover, and as an avoidance, of accountability,” Brown told The Washington Post. “And it’s a way of further shaming victims. ‘What a bad girl you are, you aren’t forgiving.’”
This is maddening! This “forgive & forget” crap is one of the reasons I can no longer identify with many Christians….I remember when so called religious leaders told me to forgive my abusive first husband AFTER I kicked him out of my home. One religious leader (referred to here as “mr minister” witnessed, first hand, my ex’s explosive anger directed at me, where the ex grabbed me & threw me across a room in my home when the “well meaning” mr minister attempted to counsel him on his Christianity and our marriage. I had not asked him to do this, but I had informed mr minister of my ex husband’s volatility (he didn’t believe me).
Mr minister was out of his depth, didn’t know the first thing about handling a family in crisis and had no business attempting to intervene. His only counsel to me was repeating Bible verses about how a wife is to submit to her husband, how the man is the head of the house, how women take a subservient role to men ALWAYS… and then finishing off with the statement, “as harsh as it may sound, you have no biblical grounds to leave this marriage.” Then months later showing up at my door to warn me about being sure to fulfill my wifely duties so my husband was not tempted to wander from the marriage.
THIS THIS THIS is the kind of support these so called Evangelical religious leaders show for their female congregants. THIS is why these women support Donald Trump…they are not allowed to think for themselves… they get whacked with Bible verses to keep them in place and subservient to their abusive fathers, husbands, male church members, and the abusive religious leadership. And they are told over and over and over again that they must forgive and forget to be good Christians.
It was an epiphany that finally freed me from my abusive marriage. I realized that forgiveness did not mean I must allow my abuser to come back into my life to abuse me again. I can forgive, but I do not forget. Forgiveness with no accountability is foolishness.
Read the Washington Post article here:
Ok, so everyone has moments of grace every now and then. If the items on this list truly happened, they are isolated incidents.
Isolated incidents of grace or failing do not define a person’s character. It is the daily practices and habits of a person that defines character. (If someone really dug hard enough and long enough, one might find some isolated incidents of failure in Mother Teresa’s life).
So what kind of frequent, prolonged grace is Donald Trump known for? None come to mind. His isolated incidents of grace only tell me that he is capable of generosity and grace, which makes it all the more intolerable when I observe his constant and continued failings at humanity as the leader of the free world. Clearly, he is capable of grace and generosity, but he chooses selfishness and self interest most of the time.
The Douglas County Chamber Singers Christmas concert was last night and as I reflect on the evening, I feel so many emotions. I have sung with this group for 16 years (I missed the very first concert). I am honored to be a part of the Singers and have learned so much about choral singing from our conductor Vickie Orme.
I am humbled by and appreciative of the people who turn up to listen to our concerts. I am thankful to the musical composers and song masters who have created the beautiful songs we sing. I am thankful to the United Methodist Church of Douglasville for allowing us to sing this beautiful music in their beautiful sanctuary with it’s gorgeous stained glass windows, graceful wooden arches and its wonderful organ.
I am especially thankful to Vickie Orme, our conductor, to Deanne Ohman, our pianist, and to all of the singers in the Chamber Singers for their loyalty, their commitment, their flexibility, and their love of music.
Together we lift our voices in celebration, love, and devotion to each other, to the world around us, to our fellow humans, and to the God that we love.
Happy, blessed and safe holidays to all during this last month of the year.