I’m starting to feel like we need to rent an apartment in West Lafayette.
Both Emmett and Lucas have appointments today, and I’m very grateful we were able to coordinate for them to go together. It’s usually a 10- to 12-hour door-to-door day, and Emmett was originally scheduled for next week – so two of those long days in two weeks. Yikes! Thankfully, they were flexible and Emmett got in today.
I’m also hoping that since they’ll be seeing the same oncologist, Emmett can help Lucas feel calmer. Though that didn’t work in the car ride up this morning, when Em slept the entire way (of course) and Lucas panted the entire way. (Sorry it’s blurry – hard to get a good shot in a moving car. And don’t worry! John was driving!)
So, Purdue. Here’s the thing about a teaching hospital: You very rarely see the same person from appointment to appointment. The residents rotate through the different departments, so today was the third doctor Emmett’s seen so far and the second Lukey’s seen. Check-in takes a while because you have to go through all the case details anew. Luckily, this time the big boys are able to be together for most of the day in between tests.
Emmett is having his blood work, chest x-rays, and ultrasound. That’ll be it for him unless they find any new masses or his spleen masses have changed, at which point they’d sedate him to do a fine-needle aspirate. Lucas is getting blood work done first, and then he’ll get his chemo infusion. His platelets have been low on his weekly blood work, and he’s lost a few pounds, so they may end up adjusting his dose this time. We won’t know for a couple hours, though, because they have to get the blood test back to make a decision first.
I promise to write a whole post about the chemo situation and Emmett’s status, but today I’m preoccupied with an unexpected… situation… a conundrum, really…
When we got this appointment for the bigs lined up, the first thing I did was book Cooper at doggy daycare for the day. We’re going to be gone the entire day, so daycare makes the most sense. But the daycare closes at 7 pm, and there have been times when I haven’t gotten back from Purdue until 7:30 or even a bit later. We usually know by around 3:30 if they’re going to be past 5 – getting us home after daycare closes at 7 – and our very sweet next door neighbors, Cady’s people, offered to pick Coop up and drop him at home. It’s a huge relief knowing we have that backup plan in case today goes longer than anticipated.
All of this made us realize a striking, startling fact: In his 4.5 years with us, Cooper has never – never – been home by himself. Not once. If Em is at the vet, he’s home with Lucas and vice versa. Heck, on the rare occasions when both big boys were somewhere together, it was usually with John or I – never both of us – so the other was home with Cooper.
And, I suppose the reality of our current situation – Emmett with hemangiosarcoma, Lucas with osteosarcoma – is that Cooper needs to learn how to be by himself.
This is one of those things, you guys. It feels heavy, and if I start to dig down and really think it through – Cooper being home alone in the quiet, Cooper playing alone in the yard – it’s more than I can deal with while both big boys are currently in oncology. So, I’m going to take my usual tactic and focus on a plan. Steps. Action.
Anyway, that’s the current preoccupation: What is the best way to “train” Cooper to be comfortable alone?
We still have a couple hours until our first update from the vet, so I’ll be thinking through that plan in the meantime. I’d love any ideas or suggestions you brilliant dog-savvy folks might have. Otherwise, here’s hoping you’re all having a great week! I’ll post an update (either on FB or IG) as soon as we have one!