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Some Good News

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Editorial Note: This was supposed to be posted August 8th but as I mentioned yesterday, a couple of my posts got lost! I will have a real-time update for you tomorrow. 

My dog (and savings) are mostly okay

The vet examined Rosie on Wednesday and it was good news. He removed the questionable lump while she was awake (saving me money on anesthesia!). He took a look at it under a microscope and said it was just a cyst that had become infected. Good news! He inspected her other lumps and said they were fine as well. This was one of our most expensive visits to date, totalling $236. The vet prescribed three medications to address her whole-body rash and the wound from the lump removal. You can see in this picture below, there is a wound on her back. She’s bandaged up now and doing great.

Rosie vet

I am so relieved, especially about the corn cobs she ate. Those are one of the most common causes of bowel obstruction surgery. Rosie had corn cobs stuck in her belly for three and a half days, and we are beyond lucky that they came up naturally (there was one full size cob and two half-sized ones – that’s a lot of food to have stuck inside you for so long!).

Budget implications

Rosie has insurance, but since I purchased it, she hasn’t been sick. Typical, right? She has a $300/year deductible so I won’t get any money back from this visit, but I submitted it so that if she is sick again, we will receive coverage. I haven’t figured out if I can pull the money for this vet visit from other categories yet. I shouldn’t need any clothes, cat medical supplies, or household stuff this month, but I’ve already blown my entertainment budget and it’s only August 9th. If I can be lean with my groceries and find a bit of money from side hustles, I might be able to swing this payment without touching my savings or adding to my debt.

Spending Challenges

I have been tracking my spending. Why is this so difficult? Facing spending realities is really hard. I am over budget for entertainment, and already almost at my limit for groceries. I used to be a perfectionist with meal planning, but work is ruining all of that right now. I’m putting in 13-14 hour days plus commuting, and I have a house to clean and animals to take care of when I get home. I haven’t watched tv or listened to podcasts in weeks. I have no free time, and my budget is suffering for it. This is my reality for at least another few weeks, so I am going to keep tracking spending diligently. Hope has been posting money challenges. If I am being realistic, my biggest challenge this month will be not to add to my debt. Having my honest spending data in front of me will help inform my next goals. I’ve only been tracking nine days so far, and it’s already staggering.

Side hustles?

This morning I received a message for a dog-sitting gig that would pay $132. The owner is looking for someone to sleep at her house for a few days mid-month. I actually have help with my pets this month, so I can swing this gig! Fingers crossed it works out. I also have a lead on a friend of a friend who needs a room for a few weeks starting August 15th! I know this person, so it won’t be a stranger in my house.


Farewell, Sweet Friend

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Sorry for the radio silence this week! I felt like I needed a couple personal days before returning. I promise this will be my last Rocky post. Next week I’ll be back with more of the regular financial/work/life posts. So indulge me in just this last one.

The short story is that we said farewell to our sweet furry friend on Wednesday.

It still kind of blows my mind how quickly things went downhill.

Last Monday we were at the vet for a routine check-up. We literally had NO CLUE anything was wrong with our fur-baby. He had recently stopped jumping up on our bed, but I thought it was due to arthritis. He’s a large dog and 11 years old, so it didn’t alarm me that he was showing potential signs of joint problems. Plus, they were real recent. I thought it was no big deal.

Then last Wednesday we got official word that it WAS, in fact, a big deal. Rocky wouldn’t be around for much longer.

By Thursday morning it was like a flip had been switched and Rocky was SICK. I mean, he was really ill. We were told he might make it 3-6 weeks, but literally the day after the diagnosis he immediately stopped eating and drinking, stopped moving around much at all, and started vomiting multiple times per day. I don’t know the dog’s mind, but I think it’s reasonable to believe that he realized something was wrong with him and he gave himself permission to give into the disease that was ravaging his body (he’d been to the dog doctor twice within a single week, and we left with me sobbing my eyes out. Doesn’t take genius-level reasoning skills to know something is not good). I hired a photographer to come take some final family photos, but the soonest she could get out wasn’t until Tuesday and I was worried Rocky wouldn’t make it that long. So after a serious day of illness all day last Thursday, on Friday I started talking to Rocky and telling him what was going on. I told him that he needed to hold on for a few more days. And again, overnight, he seemed better. Well…better-ish.

He started moving around more, resumed eating and drinking, and stopped vomiting. To be fair though, he never did eat dog food again. Our vet literally said “feed him cheeseburgers” (just basically to say he could have whatever/we didn’t need to put him on a special diet). So during his last week he enjoyed pizza, quesadillas, peanut butter sandwiches, and Sonoran hot dogs. All of his favorite foods!

We had our photos done on Tuesday afternoon. I’ve only seen some initial images, but I do think there were some good ones. I’m still kind of sad because you can definitely SEE that Rocky wasn’t feeling well. I don’t think the photos accurately reflect his spunky personality because, at the point of the photos, he was just barely hanging on (in my own mind, he only made it this long because he loves me and I was asking him to hold on). Even so, there were some good ones that I’ll cherish forever. As a surprise, the photographer only charged us $100. It was a very short session (about 20 minutes) because Rocky really wasn’t feeling up to it and the girls kept having melt-downs (not about Rocky, but just the general run-of-the-mill toddler tantrums).

Wednesday morning, the girls went to their last day of preschool and Rocky went back to the vet one final time. Only this time, hubs and I came home empty-handed. I know it was the right time. Almost immediately after our photos on Tuesday night, Rocky showed signs of serious illness again. He refused food and water and resumed throwing up.

I’m telling you….I don’t even know that I believe in that stuff. And yet…it feels like there’s something to it. He was holding on just for me/for those pictures. When they were done…so was he.

I’m heartbroken and sad, of course. But I also feel at peace, knowing it was his time to go. I also like knowing that he had a full lifetime of many wonderful memories and lots and lots of love, hugs, and attention.

I want to thank you all so much for your comments, kindness, and virtual hugs. I really did feel each one! I also loved your tips!

A few of you suggested doing a doggy paw print mold. And thanks to the magic of Amazon Prime, I was able to get this package mailed same day this past weekend. I had Rocky do the mold imprint the same day. I haven’t actually matted it yet, so the picture below is just kind of sitting there (not properly matted and framed), but this gives you an idea of how it will look. This picture is one from 5 years ago at our baby shower for the girls!! I may end up replacing it with one of the professional photos but I love this shot because his eyes are so bright and he looks so happy (he was in the middle of playing ball, his favorite past-time). On the side with the paw print mold, I also plan to mount his name-tag (a bone-shaped tag saying “Rocky” with our phone number).  I LOVE it and I never would have thought of this idea on my own. It was only $20 and I think it was $20 well spent, in my opinion. Thank you to those of you who suggested this idea!

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Again, thank you for your kindness. If you aren’t a pet person I know how crazy this all seems. Before we had Rocky, I always thought people who referred to their pets as “babies” were a little weird. No offense! But when we got Rocky I totally became one of “those” people! Hands down! He’s been a huge part of my life the last 11 years! I got him when I was only 21 years old so he has been around for a significant chunk of my life! I know I will miss him always, but my heart will heal.

I hope you all have a great rest of the week and weekend. Thank you for indulging me in these Rocky-heavy posts the past week. Writing has always been healing for me, so I feel like I really needed to write about it as a way to help process the emotions (plus, there have been some serious financial implications, too!) I’ll see you all on Monday with a more “typical” post. Have a great weekend!

 

 


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