1. I headed out the door to go to work yesterday afternoon, hopped in the car and backed out of the driveway. As soon as I started forward, I heard a horrible grinding noise and new instantly what it was. I pulled off into the next driveway and confirmed that my front driver side tire was flat as a pancake. I got the car back into my own drive without damaging the wheel rim, thankfully, and took David's truck instead.
2. Work was physically, mentally and emotionally draining. I've had busier nights, but I had a lot of surgical procedures, which kept me very occupied and made it difficult to maintain good forward momentum. Add into that one of those surgeries arresting under anesthesia, and it was just not a good night.
3. Last and worst of all. I got home from work at around noon to see that my little old man, Poqui, was bleeding from the mouth more than he had been. He'd been in decline for a while and developing some trouble eating, but I'd hoped it was just bad teeth and had even done bloodwork last night in preparation for anesthetizing him next week to clean them. Today, though, I could see that his tongue was pushed dramatically to one side, and I was sure that it wasn't anything good.
We took him to the emergency clinic across the river in Portsmouth, which is much, much closer than my own workplace, and they helped me get an IV catheter in and sedate him so that I could look (he hated to have me look in his mouth and got more difficult the older he got). One look confirmed what I had feared - a large, invasive tumor under and in his tongue and working its way deep into his oral cavity.
There was, of course, only one option. I brought him home, still heavily sedated, and we sat in the grass, with sun shining and seabreeze blowing, and I said my goodbyes and helped him shuffle out of this life. You might think that for all the years I've been doing this for a living, it would get just a little bit easier, but it doesn't. Not one little bit.
I first met Poqui on July 5, 1989, when he was no more than a few hours old. Over the last 18 years, I was able to watch the entire arc of his life from beginning to end. He traveled with me through pretty much all of my adult life and outlived other, equally loved pets. And for much as it hurts right now, I know that the time I had with him was privileged and precious, and I wouldn't trade one second of it.