Archive | November 2013

Squamous Cell What?

I wanted to provide an update since I started my new job. First of all, I’m loving it! Today I played ping pong with one of the creatives. I haven’t written in quite some time because I’ve been taking the time to settle into my new job and to come to terms with what’s new with my family.

Mila after radiation treatment

Mila after radiation treatment

One week before I started my job, my baby Mila’s veterinarian phoned to say that she has squamous cell carcinoma and the prognosis did not look good. As you can imagine, I felt helpless and thoughts rushed into my head similar to the time that my dear Ken was diagnosed with that awful word, cancer. So yes, my poor feline has cancer at the age of 14. The good news is that our vet called a veterinary oncologist who said he believed that Mila had a 70-80% success rate with radiation. I was overwhelmed with hope and happy that my Mila could have a better quality of life and live longer. I had never heard of success rates with cancer. Of course, the treatments are expensive but she is my baby and she deserves this care. Dr. Hamilton of the Georgia Veterinary Specialists is one of the first veterinary oncologists in the country and he’s here in Atlanta, how lucky could we be?

The first day I took Mila in for radiation, the second day of my new job, I sobbed because it reminded me so much of Ken and when he started radiation treatments. They are so similar, the staging, protocol, timing, everything – how could I not remember? My point here is that cancer is everywhere, even affecting our dear pets and loved ones. Thankfully, I joined a company that recognizes that pets are family members and they have given me great leniency with coming into the office and working from home.

The only side affects from the radiation are being tired from the sedation (she has to be sedated each time) so it’s like she’s going through a mini-surgery every week night in that I have to take food away from her and she can’t eat until the procedure is over. This affects Pickle’s life too, our other family feline, and I’ve decided to join them and not eat breakfast until after Mila’s treatment is over.

I can’t believe that we are going through this again but Mila has been extremely brave and has made me hopeful. Life tests you and all we can do is try to persevere and live day to day taking what is thrown our way.

I went to a restorative yoga class tonite and saw a reflection on the ceiling that reminded me of a shadow of Ken laying down while he was receiving pranic healing. The shadow is from prayer flags hanging from the ceiling. A prayer flag is a colorful panel of rectangular cloth often found strung along mountain ridges and peaks high in the Himalayas to bless the surrounding countryside. Prayer flags are used to promote peace, compassion, strength, and wisdom. The flags do not carry prayers to ‘gods,’ a common misconception; rather, the Tibetans believe the prayers and mantras will be blown by the wind to spread the good will and compassion into all pervading space. Therefore, prayer flags are thought to bring benefit to all. When I looked closer at the ceiling I saw rays of light coming from the figure. It made me weep with sadness remembering my sweet Ken and missing him so badly when Hector, his pranic healer, spoke of Ken and that he saw rays of light and energy emanating from him.



It will be five months next week from his death and it still feels so surreal. I continue to answer emails from this blog to try to help others affected by this horrible cancer.