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  • A hazy future

    I didn't mean for my last post to be around Koo's birthday. That was in early August. Wow. Time flies as well as creeps along. I mean, the election is still almost two weeks away and it feels like this election has been going on forever. I'm so tired of this election that I looked up to see if Virgnia has early voting - it doesn't. Also, fun fact, you can't request an absentee ballot just because you want one. Not that I looked that up. I happened to hear about it on a podcast this morning. But still.

    I don't even know where to start. I mean, I've got this yogurt cup sitting next to me - black cherry, one of my favorites - and I can't even eat it because that's how things are these days. Sometimes I've got enough appetite to down forty-five peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, five pizzas and a bag of peanut butter cups (exaggeration, yes) and today I feel like the yogurt is too much.

    Life is chaotic, sometimes in an actual scheduling sort of way, but mostly in a my brain and processing emotions and stuff way. I know it's hard to write about because I keep tabbing over to twitter, hoping that something interesting will pop up and I can avoid it. I guess that's also like life right now.

    For some blissful months, it was really easy to forget that Koo was sick. But the coughing has been creeping back up on her, and I had to take her back to the vet yesterday ahead of her scheduled appointment. The jist of it is that they can't just up the lasix, because her kidneys aren't handling it well. Or they're starting to fail. We're not sure yet. So we're having to play mix and match with medications, hoping that we can find some mixture that controls the coughing without harming the rest of her. They said that while she still presents really well (basically, she still looks good, she's happy, etc), the heart disease has progressed, and we're likely looking at 6-12 months. They would be really pleased to see her get to 12 months, and she could go beyond that, but it's not all that likely.

    It's not like I didn't know this was coming. It's not like I haven't had four months to process this eventual reality. And I feel like you either absolutely understand how I'm feeling, or you think I'm a nut for being this torn up over a dog.

    Twice a day, she gets her pills. I try to use as little cheese as possible because I want to keep the sodium down - but we're also talking 5.5 pills. I'm switching her to a lower sodium food to try and help out her kidneys. But she has been so incredibly picky about her food lately. It is seriously the most absurd thing. For several weeks, she would not eat her food unless there was baby food on it. Then it was cottage cheese. Then it was eggs. Now it's this chicken broth. Every few weeks, she decides she's done with whatever she was eating on her kibble, and I have to scramble to find something that she'll eat, something that I don't have to cook up every day, because I never know if it's going to be a two bowl or a five bowl kind of day. Lately, that last demand for food comes around 12:30-1:30am. But I can't just stay up that late. No. She'll whine at me until I go to bed, and then wake me up to feed her an hour or two later. I love her. But I spend so much time taking care of her...Between that, and her companionship, I look into a post-Koo future and I see a whole lot of blank space.

    That, in a really wordy way, is the crux of the issue, I think. Every day I look at those "on this day" posts on Facebook, and I see pictures of Koo. And I think, holy cow, it won't be that long before I'm looking at pictures of this dog, and she will be just a memory. At some point, there will be a "last picture ever taken" of her. She'll be gone, and what do I do then?

    She's such a presence in my life. I had to go grab her from the bed and bring her into the office with me because she was too lazy to follow me, but was barking indignantly. In the morning, I have until she finishes drinking water to get my shoes on and be ready to take her out.

    I know that things will be different. Very different. This is a season of inevitable change. When I'm feeling good, I try to embrace that fact. But it's hard. She's not okay. I'm not okay. I don't know what I'm going to do without her, and I hate that I have to find out.