Long detailed Rumsfeld update to follow:
Since the first episode I have been a wreck. I suspect there’s a bit of PTSD going on inside of me. It was that traumatizing for me. Obviously it hasn’t helped how things progressed as we get to the near conclusion. Just one month prior he had his annual physical/vaccinations and was declared to be in perfect health. And we had absolutely no reason to believe otherwise. We’d spent one of the best summers of my life taking advantage of every moment enJOYing our fortune to be blessed with such a magical place from which to to so. I had decided to make every moment count and once surviving the process of procuring The Asylum…I did.
I am so grateful for the memories. Me and Rumsfeld seem to have appreciated it all the most and I will forever be grateful for the time we spent together and the experiences we had.
At this point the medications have leveled out and he is feeling infinitely better. Going through with the MRI/spinal tap, as awful as it turned out, was the best thing we could have done. While knowing that the end is near is shredding my heart and finding that his affliction was probably the only thing I couldn’t protect him from it has enabled me to know that we did everything we possibly could. I will carry on knowing that and not wondering for the rest of my life. But foremost, it has enabled us to give him relief that wouldn’t have been possible without knowing what was going on deep down inside. I have the greatest comfort in that by far the most.
While he’s still experiencing some issues holding his bladder ( the medications as well as the affects on his mind from the tumor ) and is a little unsteady ( neurologically and the medications )…he is OUTWARDLY doing quite well. He is still experiencing the episodes but the Phenobarbital is keeping the seizures from manifesting dramatically. If I wasn’t LOOKING for them I’d never know.
This is only temporary and the doctors warn us that soon will be a time when we have to adjust and play around with the levels and once that occurs we. are. done.
I will not put him through that…
Without a full biopsy there’s no way of knowing for sure how long we have ( NOT putting him through that either ) but based on the MRI, his physical symptoms and experience we were given about 3 months. And the last two would definitely be simply prolonging the inevitable at the expense of his comfort. So for now…
Once a seizure “breaks through” we are done.
He’s received a 5 day stretch of mega Prednesone doses and for the next few days will be on 1/2 that then 1/2 of that again for “maintenance”. It’s made a remarkable difference in relieving the painful inflammation in his head as far as we can see. We could possibly add some Tramadol but at that point we’re back to prolonging the inevitable and a doped up dog isn’t a dog. Not for the forever. One of the ER vets put my feelings most succinctly into words:
“He doesn’t have to do math, he just has to be a dog”
And that entails eating, sleeping, pooping, peeing, playing, loving and being loved. Once he is unable to do any of those things he begins ceasing to be a dog. Obviously if it were temporary it would be a different story. This is not.
This is going to be my last post on this until that day.
We are packing up and heading out to The Asylum until Christmas evening and plan to be as normal as possible within limits. Aside from being mindful of his unsteadiness so he doesn’t injure himself we will let him do whatever makes him happy… and see how much that is in our favorite place. It will tell us a lot and enable us to make a decision BEFORE it is made for us. Other than the shaved spots where the IVs went in and the bit on his neck from the spinal draw he’s still perfect on the outside. It will be the subtle things that will make the big decision. And what makes it moreso the most difficult. It’s not helping that he’s never been a real mushy huggy type…and that I was told the medications and the pressure on his brain could make him more aggressive and grumpy toward me. So far, the opposite has been true.
It’s a blessing and a curse.
So now we’re about ready to head out for what’s likely to be a last hurrah. My plan is to try and make things as normal as possible while in the forefront of my mind knowing it’s not. I won’t be checking Drudge but will check in from time to time with other things that strike me. Just not “this”. This will be my last “update” on this because really, there is nothing more to say……….