So wrote the great poet/philosopher/musician John Lennon. It’s just as true in the RV life. After learning that the Amazon job would be ending on the 19th, my plan for the days leading up to our departure from Green River Lake State Park included packing away everything we won’t need to use for the remainder of our stay, cleaning the camper, laundering the throw rugs, blankets and sheets, and working on some Amigurumi and crochet projects I’ve started.
That all changed on Saturday, the 15th, when our tiny friend and MinPin companion Potsy became very ill. I called Dr. Smith of Crossroads Animal Clinic in Campbellsville, referred by our camping neighbors Al and Karen Phillips of WishUponAnRvStar.blogspot.com after their Chelsea had surgery there. He graciously gave me his time, even though it was after-hours on a weekend. When I described Potsy’s symptoms to Dr. Smith, he was relatively certain, considering Potsy’s age of 11, they were signs of kidney failure. The prognosis was grim! Potsy had already become lethargic, and it appeared as though his time was limited. Since he was showing no signs of pain and was very calm and content in his favorite spot on the love seat, Wayne and I made the decision to allow him to pass naturally at home, if that turned out to be the course.
All evening Saturday, I sat with him either on my lap or next to me on the love seat, with my hand petting him or resting on him, which seemed to keep him happy. Around midnight, I decided to go to bed. I took him with me, and as usual he burrowed under the covers and lay next to our feet. I totally expected to find him lifeless when I awoke.
I woke up around 4 a.m. when he came out of the covers. He headed for his water bowl, drank his fill and went to the door showing me he wanted to go out, which we did. When we came back inside, he went back to the love seat and we resumed our vigil. It lasted all day Sunday. He lay wrapped in his favorite fleece blanket next to me or in my arms. Wayne took the day off work, and we took turns keeping Potsy company. We spent the day mostly watching him sleep, expecting him to drift away from us at any moment, and crying together.
Around 10 o’clock, Potsy and I went to bed, and he took his regular spot under the covers. Around midnight I woke up to the sound of his heaving, but it passed shortly and everybody went back to sleep.
We got up at 5 to get Wayne off to work, which he had reluctantly decided was the thing he needed to do. While I was saying I would let Potsy sleep as long as he wanted, he emerged from the covers. I placed him on the floor, and he went to his water bowl. He shook himself, did a downward-facing dog yoga stretch, and I took him outside to relieve himself – all part of his normal routine. When we came in, it was obvious he wanted food. Since he hadn’t eaten anything since Saturday morning, I gave him a little canned food which he enjoyed. He then returned to his spot on the love seat, but seemed to be his normal perky self. Could it be that the phone diagnosis was not accurate, and our old Potsy was coming back? We shared our hope.
After Wayne left for work, I took Potsy back to bed and he fell asleep. I took a short nap to recover some of the lost sleep from the past two nights, then got up and prepared for a visit to the vet. I called Dr. Smith’s office and they gave me a 10 o’clock appointment. My good friend and camping buddy here at the park, Mitchie Sullivan, offered me a ride to the vet. I was grateful for the help, since it allowed me to attend to Potsy during the drive.
Potsy was alert and engaged, as he had been earlier in the morning. Except for the obvious weight loss which has left him noticeably thin, he seemed like his normal self. Dr. Smith examined him and found no obvious problems. There was no abdominal tenderness, no signs of infection, dehydration or jaundice, and no fever. We decided to do a blood workup, however, and the results dampened our brief hope that he was naturally healing whatever problem had existed. His blood test showed off-the-charts-high readings in all the areas that indicate kidney malfunction. The Doctor was amazed and a little befuddled by our little guy’s presentation of normalcy. He administered two injections to calm the stomache issues, and we headed back home to await the developments of the next 24 hours. The alternative was an overnight stay in the clinic for administration of fluids. The doctor and I agreed that wasn’t the best option.
The minute the excitement of the vet visit was behind us, though, our “Little” started to crash again. We’re back on the love seat, now, in our usual positions. It’s about 2 in the afternoon, and it appears I will be spending more time sitting with our Potsy. I don’t mind though. It’s the least I can do to pay him back in some small way for all the joy and unconditional love he has brought into our lives since the day we picked him up from his foster parents’ house in early 2008.
All the stuff I had planned to do this week doesn’t seem so important now. All those tasks will wait, and I will spend as much time as I need to just being with our little Dayton, Potsy Watts, Who-Man, Bugsy, Bug-Eyes, Little Bitty, Tiny Dancer. I’ll hold out hope that he can somehow come through this and go to Florida with us, just as we planned before life brought us this happening. Please send healing energy and prayers his way. I’ll get back to you when I can.