2013-08-13 - 11:00 p.m.

Today as I was taking the garbage to the curb I noticed that there as a half squashed grasshopper in the driveway. I had either stepped on him, run him over with one of the garbage cans or even run him over with the car as I pulled in. But he was alive, with a totally squashed back end. And even then, even seeing that there was no way in hell this grass hopper was ever going to be able to survive and knowing that it was in pain...I still had a very, very hard time killing it to end its misery. First I moved it to a flower bed and covered it with plants and then about five minutes later I went back to find it still alive and struggling. So I stared at it for a time. And finally, finally I just squashed it as quickly and as hard as possible. It was horrible. Everything about it was horrible. And this is why I know that I am going to lose it very soon. Because I didn't get good news about Bear today. I took him to a radiologist who ultrasounded his abdomen and thorax and found not good things in either place. I think my Bear has weeks, not months and definitely not years before he is at a point where he is suffering. Right now he is fine, he's eating more or less normally and still running for treats and rolled around on some catnip...but man. He's lost a lot of weight and he has things growing inside of him. On his pancreas. Which I remember learning was the most painful of cancers when my grandfather was dying from it. How am I ever going to do what is right when I can't even put a mostly dead grasshopper out of its misery?

My best friend Nicole had a cat once. They had him for a number of years and they really loved him. They found out one day when they took him to the vet that he has some sort of cancer and although he was fine at that point, it was just a matter of time before he would get really sick and really uncomfortable. They took him home that day, initially thinking that they had a few good months left with Hobbes. But they decided, that night, that they would take him back in the morning and have him put to sleep because at the end of the day they didn't want him to even suffer one moment. And I so admire that. I so want to be able to be that strong and that brave but it just isn't who I am. Even with my own self...if there is even a miniscule chance of my surviving something you better not pull any plugs on me. I'll fight to the very end thank you very much. I think it is that instinct in my own self that makes this so hard for me. I don't want somebody to pull my plug so I sure don't want to be the somebody that pulls somebody else's. Also, I love this cat with every ounce of my soul. I'm never going to be OK with this. Ever.

I have a really, really difficult couple of years coming up.


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