Talking to my editor today, I learned that he and his wife are going off to a villa on the Amalfi Coast for several weeks. SIGH. The land of Jim’s and my dream villa! And the whole time they are there, sipping limoncello on a terrazzo above the Mediterranean, we will be driving Shiloh across the city every single day to the doggy oncologist. It is probably cheaper to go to Italy for two weeks than to put a dog through radiation treatments.
And though this realization comes at a time when I have been fervently & wishfully bookmarking trekking and kayak tours to Belize, Thailand, and Nepal, I am relatively unphased. What is the value of a year of an animal’s life? A trek in Nepal? Depends on the animal, I guess. Shiloh has been with me most of my adult life -- almost a third of my life! -- I know certain people think I’m crazy (one whose name rhymes with phlegmily), but all I can say is, you might not THINK you would do it, but you don’t know until you have to decide.
Shiloh had a CT scan today in preparation for beginning radiation, and she was bright-eyed and peppy coming out of the anesthesia, which bodes well for 18 consecutive days of anesthesia! The Veterinary Diagnostic Imaging Center was an incredibly posh place that looked like an upscale clinic for people, not pets, and there was only one other person there while I was waiting. I watched while the radiologist came out, x-rays in hand, and led this woman into a consultation room. It could be called a grief room. When he left a while later, he closed the door to give her privacy and I could hear her weeping inside. She had just learned her 9-year-old lab is riddled with cancer. He is the first dog she has ever had in her life, and she said she could never have imagined how hard this would be: to think that very soon the day would come that she would go home from the vet without him. Forever.
My mind isn’t ready to imagine that day yet. My mind DEFLECTS it. Which is why Jim & I will be taking turns driving to Beaverton 18 days in a row. Put like that, it doesn’t sound like such a big deal. 18 days of driving for another year of Shiloh? Feh. No question.