No drink in my hand. It's too early in the day for alcohol, and besides, I just took my meds an hour ago. I'm not sure if combining booze with my meds is chemically a bad thing, but I work on the assumption that mixing booze with any meds is a bad idea, and so far that philosophy has suited me well.
Mimi has undergone two rounds of chemo so far, and as of Thursday was doing fabulously. One of our vets called us, congratulating us on the good news, that her tumor has gone into partial remission.
Then yesterday came, and the recovery blew a tire. Mimi wouldn't take her meds that morning, and when I got home from work, I found Mimi hovering over her water bowl in the kitchen, a small puddle of drool on the floor. I looked into the bedroom and found vomit everywhere. Every ten minutes or so, she'd try to drink water, only to fail. I finally took a syringe and forced some lukewarm water down her throat, then called the vet.
This shit is normal, I was assured. And I understand that. The part of my brain that took the SATs understands that. The part of my brain that practically sprinted Mimi to the vet, however, does not care how normal it is. It does not care that chemo can wreck an appetite, can make one so nauseous, swallowing anything is an ordeal. It refuses reasoning and logic, preferring love and desperation.
After the vet gave her an injection of water and some anti-nausea medication, I took my calico home. She returned to her water bowl, sat, and waited. She hasn't eaten anything since, and Tori and I have had to crush her meds, mix them in water, and deliver it to her orally through a syringe, but we're determined to see this through.
After Mimi's two weeks of chemo, I was fooled into thinking it was going to be easy. Everything was fine, and it would continue to be so. I let my guard down, and got a vicious hit to the solar plexus as my reward.
I've been lucky. My father, grandfather, and many of my relatives succumbed to cancer, but I was physically too far away to witness the fight. I got an occasional snapshot of the fight during those rare moments when I could fly out to visit, but I couldn't witness the daily battles, when every activity one normally takes for granted is suddenly a test of endurance. Sometimes you can eat, sometimes you can't. Sometimes you can drink water, other times you need help. In Cancerland, this is normal, but I only visited Cancerland; I've never lived there before.
So Mimi is curled up on her pillow in the living room, next to the radiator. I'll place a water dish nearby when I'm done here. And I might have to squirt another 5 mL of water down Mimi's throat later. It's part of life here in Cancerland, and I'd better get used to it.