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Jonah Day

23 October 2009
Anne Shirley (yes, of Green Gables) called days like today “Jonah Days.”  It’s been more of a Jonah WEEK, but the term still works!  We all have them – they’re times when things go from just ok to not-so-great to bad to worse.  I’ve got to admit, that it really does feel like it’s just been one thing after another!  Of course, I also have to admit that despite feeling frustrated by the lack of forward momentum, I always have the words spoken to me by my friend Andrea Barber (yes, the one and only Kimmy Gibler of Full House): “Melissa, you’re the most karmically balanced person I’ve ever known.”  So for all the crap that happens – I’ve also got a whole lotta good stuff going on!  Still. Some days are just hard, no matter what!
As many of you know, over the last few weeks my Thoroughbred, Frank, has been struggling with his health.  Things started out pretty mild – a swollen sheath, lack of appetite, crankiness, weight loss. He has, however, steadily declined.  This week, he’s emaciated (he dropped 50 – 60 lbs. in 10 – 14 days). He’s not eating, not drinking, has swollen hind legs and sheath, and edema on his belly.  I must still be a bit “raw” to write about it because I’m unable to express the upheaval of emotions that I’m feeling.  It may be because it’s still relatively unresolved.  I sat with him off and on all day today. I gave him a good massage, changed his shavings twice (mostly because I wanted him to pee so I could get another urine sample!), held his water bucket to encourage him to drink, and just generally loved on him.  He finally ate a few flakes of hay at about 3 pm — which was really encouraging.
The good thing is that according to his blood work, the chance of his having cancer is slim…the frustrating thing is we’re no closer to knowing what the heck is going on.  We’re trying an ulcer treatment, but honestly, I doubt that that’s what it is.  With the feed program, supplement program, exercise program, general care, and laid back situation I have here, I just can’t imagine he’d be stressed at all…plus, I’ve been aware that he has a history of bad ulcers, so I’m extra cautious (my friend Gabby says “obsessive”)!  I just don’t see it.  If it is ulcers, I’ll have to make some extremely tough decisions, since a 30 day cycle of GastroGuard is $1,650 – yep. $55 per day.  And since it’s his second round of the GastroGuard, he’d more than likely have to stay on it on a regular basis…and, frankly (excuse the pun), I’m not sure that I can justify that – BUT I’m going to cross that bridge when I come to it. For now, I need to get through the weekend until his other tests come back from the lab.  His legs are far less swollen today, but I think he dropped another few pounds…we’ll see how he is in the morning.
Thankfully, I had a distraction this morning.  My darling friend Pilar brought her son Jaden over to play with Ellie Graye.  Pilar and Tim were in our birthing class with us, and we became fast friends after Tim and Jeffrey bonded over some crass comment that Jeffrey made under his breath.  Jaden was born 5 days before Ellie, and we literally checked into the birthing center when Pilar was checking out.  They’ve been amazing friends, and it was so nice to catch up with Pilar.  The kids had fun together too, I think!
I’m glad I had that time with Ellie Graye, as well, because the rest of the day was just non-stop!  She went down for a nap shortly after Jaden and Pilar left, and I headed to go pick up some Senior Blend feed for Frank.  Somehow in the middle of all that, I decided that I needed to make sugar cookies.  So, I pulled some previously frozen dough out, sliced it up, and popped them in the oven………and then walked out the door. Wait, walked out the door?!??! Yeah.  It hit me after having been outside for 45 minutes that my cookies were still baking!  I called Lorena and asked her to take them out.  Thank GOD she answered!  Needless to say, they burnt.
Using a cookie press without a disk is the best way to get even, round sugar cookies…
Two clicks, slice with a serrated knife and voila! 

When am I going to learn that sometimes I can’t do EVERYTHING?
After a second trip to the vet (with Frank’s urine in a jar, wrapped in Press ‘N Seal, then in a ziploc, then in a plastic shopping bag), I went back out to the stalls to check on Frank, put his blankets on, give him his grain and medication, clean his stall for the 3rd time, and generally inspect every last inch of his body.  I was happy to see him eat an entire serving of grain: it makes me hopeful that he’ll keep that up!
It’s Friday night, but Jeffrey is still in San Jose since he’s driving the Mercedes up from California tomorrow. He had a rough week as well, so having him home will be comforting for BOTH of us. We’ll hopefully have a chance to celebrate our anniversary, but just being together as a family is super special since it doesn’t happen during the week.
Even though Ellie was a tiny bit tired and cranky this evening, and my patience was a bit thin, she still made me smile and laugh.  She played with the dogs, played in the curtains, and danced her heart out. She might be going to Granma Lene’s for her first overnight trip on Sunday, but that depends on how Granma Lene is feeling……she slipped on her patio stairs, and is now nursing a purple foot…
After putting EG to bed, I started dinner for tomorrow night: my famous PULLED CHICKEN SANDWICHES.  I haven’t made it since Ellie Graye’s birthday party in July, and I’ve been craving it the last few weeks.  Plus, I promised the recipe to about 10 people!  It’s definitely a lot of work to do it “right” – but every bite is worth it.  It is hands down my most requested recipe ever.  I’ll photograph the finished product tomorrow…for now, I only have this one shot! 🙂
Four bone-in chicken breasts

I’m definitely glad today is over – and this week is behind us…here’s to hoping for a better weekend!

(I think I might make this a regular feature)
Label your appliance cords for quick identification!


“Is that right?”

Ellie loves wearing mommy’s boots

Ellie joining the dogs…

Jax still thinks EG is her baby…

But EG thinks Jax is HER baby!

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One Comments to “Jonah Day”

  1. Thanks for brightening my day by posting this….Life… as beautiful as it can be can knock us to our knees with all the difficult thing we go through…..And I have to say this…Holly is 20 and My son Ty is 18….the heartache I have gone through with my animals (so far) has been worse or just as bad as my childrens problems or difficulties. Keep blogging my friend <3

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