We had Poe in for surgery yesterday to remove two masses from two or her hindquarter mammary glands. She'd developed two small lumps over the last few months that we'd already had the vet inspect. They were mobile, soft, and produced a slightly milky fluid. No cancerous markers from pathology - we checked just in case.
But, after the aspiration, they both got much bigger very quickly. Fearing an injection site sarcoma, we took Poe into the vet again last week and opted to have the removed. At worst - early cancer - at best just inflamed from the testing.
Surgery went well and Poe came home a little hoarse and very loopy. She gets pain meds twice a day for four days and has to wear the collar for at least a week. It is pitiful and adorable but she purrs just as hard when we pet her.
The plain reality of time is that everything gets older and slowly marches to an end. I try to take a Buddhist approach to death and attachment in that I recognize and consider that everyone and everything that I love will one day be gone.
I've been thinking about death frequently this year, of course, both others and my own and what it means to live. It is so easy to get lost in the days and not see the weeks and months and years stretching into decades and then? Maybe a century?
Maybe not. But I know that we only persist by the things we make and the people we touch.
This is not a bad thing. It just Is and is as certain as one day we, ourselves, will no longer Be.