The Gift of Zen Master Houdini

houbear snugglesHoudini cat has throat cancer, and it certainly threw us for a loop. There were several scary weeks where he was struggling to breathe, and the vet kept saying nothing serious was wrong. It didn’t add up. Then came the biopsy and a surgery, the diagnosis, and here we are. Unfortunately, there are few treatments for throat cancer, and they’re really ineffective and seem to offer very poor quality of life, so we’re in kitty hospice stage.

I debated whether to write this post, because I have no doubt things will get harder soon. Right now, though, we’re in a peaceful, beautiful place, even if I know it won’t last long. During the biopsy they removed a big chunk of the mass, so little Hou can breathe easier and he’s closer to his normal, joyful and loving self.

It’s a blessing every day to see him, to hold him, to enjoy him. We generally live on happy houautopilot with the sense that life will last forever. Knowing that he’s likely got a few weeks has made the daily experience of being with him so much more tender and beautiful.

Death is a part of life, but in the past it’s always felt like a scary and traumatic thing. There’s that, of course, but this time there’s a silver lining, too, of treasuring the mini- honeymoon phase  we’re in right now. It was clear this afternoon that he’s just starting to decline again. Still, worrying about tomorrow is only going to take away from our joy today.

So right now, we’re celebrating Houdini, and slowing down to spend extra time together. His last gift for us is to let us enjoy his life more thoroughly while he’s here.

Hug the ones you love extra close.

About Cheryl Harris

Life played a funny trick on me. I've studied nutrition for years, and much to my surprise, found out that I could manage many of my health issues via diet. I've been GF for years, and I've got a bunch of allergies and sensitivities. But it definitely doesn't keep me from cooking, baking and enjoying my food. Thanks for stopping by.
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6 Responses to The Gift of Zen Master Houdini

  1. Jeanne Leder says:

    Ohhh, Cheryl, I am so very sorry to learn this sad news. I hate it when a beloved fur-baby has such a problem. I hope his last days will be filled with love and peacefulness and that he won’t suffer too much.

    With love and sympathy,

  2. Brita says:

    So sorry about your beautiful Houdini. It’s sad, but good to know you’re able to spend some special hours together.

  3. Mary Anderson Griffin says:

    Such a beautiful and heartrending post. Houdini cat is lucky to have you. It is wonderful to have this gift of the time to just slow down and give this beautiful creature the love and time he deserves. You will not regret the time spent.

  4. Thanks so much for you kind words, Jeanne.

  5. Brita,
    Yes–I treasure our time!

  6. Mary Jo says:

    My heart goes out to you, Cheryl. I have lost two dogs to cancer (nasal and Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma) and it is heart wrenching. Blessings to you and Houdini during this time. Life is precious, no matter the creature.

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