Welcome to Drinking Out of the Trough! I hope you enjoy it as much as I do, and will learn about animals and how they enrich our lives.
I think of John Lennon’s song line: “Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.” I also think of how I used to teach genetics to my ninth graders. I called it the Forrest Gump method of Genetics. “Genetics is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.” Whew! Life sure can reach up and surprise you despite your best-made plans.
Last year at this time, I was with my best buddy from veterinary school, Dr. Jean Arnold, as she started her final journey with gastro-esophageal cancer. I was running back and forth to Denver in horrible weather to be with her as friend, medical power of attorney and now personal representative. I myself was recovering from surgery where I experienced an allergic reaction to suture material, I had a triad of new disorders: mercury toxicity, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, and severe allergies, and I was trying to study for the LSAT. The experience of helping my best friend was stressful, but there was an incredible dignity and beauty to it.
Jean was a marvelous veterinarian who took to the world of alternative treatments head on, and went out equipped with the finest resources to treat her patients.
Jean had such a graceful approach to her fatal diagnosis from the beginning to the end. She faced chemotherapy with a positive attitude, and would wear the t-shirt I gave her that said “Chemo-sabe” to every treatment. In her last hospitalization at Christmastime, I would bring her strips of mango from the hospital cafeteria. Although she could barely eat, she would say that it was the best she’d ever tasted,. Every gift given to her was a treasure. If ever there was a more beautiful way of facing death, I would like to hear it.
Drinking Out of the Trough is a blog about how we love and interact with our animal friends. How can we take care of them so they will be as healthy and happy as possible?
There will be stories about animals, questions and answers, and tidbits about life in general. I hope there will be an exchange of ideas.
You will see me asking, “What’s in your trough?” Tell me what is on your mind. It can be just about anything related to animals, kids or life in general. I am a veterinarian, a retired schoolteacher, and a community volunteer. I’ll try to keep things within the bounds of my knowledge and experience.
Again, welcome to Drinking Out of the Trough.