There is a certain art to feeling sorry for oneself, and I definitely have an aptitude for it.

There is a simple test to determine if you have an aptitude for this art too. Consider the following two statements.

If things are going badly and something else bad happens, it goes to show that the universe is committed to kicking your ass and pissing on you while you are down.

If things are going well and something bad happens, it just proves that you can’t even get enough time to enjoy the good before you are slammed with more problems.

Do these statements both sound true to you? If so, you may already be an artist. Please draw Tippy or Cubby and send it to me for a full assessment.

“Woe is me.” It isn’t pretty, but it sure does come easily to me.

On Saturday we had two cute little zebra finches. On Sunday one fell suddenly ill. I made an attempt to save him, but while we did manage some improvement, in the end it was not enough. I failed. By afternoon, we only had one cute little zebra finch.

This morning that sense of failure was still hanging on pretty strongly. As good as I am at feeling sorry for myself, I am much much better at feeling guilty. The Sunday guilt made way for the Monday guilt. I didn’t sleep well Monday night, probably the result of an over consumption of caffeine during the day. This morning I woke up “LATE”. I wasn’t actually late. It was 7am and I didn’t have anyplace I needed to be. I just woke up in the midst of that “oh crap I am so late” panic and started my day with the accompanying big dose of adrenaline. By around 9:45 I was seriously crashing and having an adrenaline hangover.

However, I was determined to pretend to stay focused and get a little more caught up on one or two of the many things I am very far behind on. Then Indy started barking her fool head off, and the echo started London howling. Soon it became apparent that the cacophony was in need of some intervention. I went to the top of the stairs to call Indy up and let her know that while it was great she was protecting us from some horrible nasty, that the threat had passed and she could settle down.

She came upstairs wondering if she might score a treat. I grabbed her around her middle and gave her some rough bouncy squeezes that cause her to make funny little grunting sounds. London is all about belly rubs, he will stay on his back for long stretches at a time as long as somebody will pay attention to his belly. Indy, she is a bit ticklish and prefers rougher treatment. She especially likes feet. She’ll lie down near where you are sitting and push her way under your feet to encourage you to step on her. She likes that. Apparently, the smellier the feet, the more she likes it. We’ve never had an in depth conversation about why, so don’t ask me. The point is, that she does not ask for, or often get, a lot of hands on attention to her belly.

So here I am, making her squirm, and I find it. It. Not the Stephen King sewer clown. It. The thing I feel incapable of dealing with today. It. A lump on her abdomen. Now I am smart enough to know that I wouldn’t actually be any more enthusiastic about the discovery on any other day, but I have sufficient self-pity skills, so that I am able feel like it is happening at precisely the wrong instant.

My immediate inclination is to go hide in a closet and just stay there, maybe until 2007. Instead I allowed myself a contained nervous breakdown and then pulled my shit a little bit together. I made a choice about which vet to take her to (I picked the one I have the least overall confidence in because a) she has the closest and least busy office b) all I need today are some basics, and that she should be able to do c) closest, quietest and least busy=the least trauma to myself and Indy d) I can always go see a preferred vet after I have the test results). I scheduled an appointment for this evening and then took some time to let my daughter know what was up.

ETA: Biopsy says it is not cancer. This is good.

Another step toward becoming a hermit, on a mountain... with a shotgun (and internet access)
Happy Anniversary to a couple of couples and a big one fingered salute to a bunch of voters

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