October: Spinning Plates

October: Spinning Plates

Regular readers will know that October was going to be my month.  September was busy, but encompassed some decisions on lifestyle that were going to be implemented in October.

The month started on a high in Granada; sun, sangria and history are pretty much my heaven.   Although we walked miles each day I came back feeling rested, relaxed, rejuvenated.  Ready to face whatever the world could throw at me.

Plus Size Travels: Granada

One of my close friends believes in a widely held theory that life is a series of plates that need to be kept spinning.  We each have multiple plates that represent different areas of our lives; whether they be our friendships, our lovers, our children, our careers, our sanity of mind, our house, our garden …

They are all plates that need to be kept spinning, to be kept turning.  One plate may be spinning happily on its own, needing little effort or attention.  Another may be off balance, needing constant attention and effort.   Diverting resources to the troublesome plate can help that needy plate to return to a state of harmony, but ultimately jeopardises the rest.

And that is how life works.   Work can be troublesome and difficult and sometimes takes up too much of time and energy causing resentment at home when you spend evenings glued to emails. Or relationships at home can leave you stressed and cranky, snapping at friends and other loved ones. Often you solve the problem of a non-spinning plate only to have another plate come tumbling down on you.

At the start of October I felt like I had all my plates spinning in perfect harmony.  I had taken active changes at work which has allowed me to figure out where I want to go in my career and what I really want to focus my skills and specialities on.   My marriage, after a rocky six months, was feeling stronger than ever and my friendships felt on fire.  Even my health was behaving.

Then work spiralled out of control; 14 hour days become common place and commutes into London extended and extended.  This had a knock-on effect on my head which became crankier and crankier.   I haven’t had the time to exercise which helps to manage my chronic pain and I didn’t have much time to relax and rejuvenate – something that is essential to my self-care routine. Pain killers, instead, have become my way of getting through the day.

The situation was only worsened when, during the middle of a Skype meeting on a rare work from home day, I noticed that my pooch’s nose was bleeding quite heavily.

Working Cocker Spaniel

Weeks of vet appointments, tests, x-rays, CT scans and specialist referrals ensued.   And I’m sad to say that my darling boy has a rare kind of nasal tumour that is obstructing his left nasal passage.   A biopsy has told us that it is a cancerous growth, fed from the cartilage cells in his nose.

There is no cure; no surgery to remove the growth.

He is only five years old; an otherwise fit and healthy dog.  Even now, with such a devastatingly short time left here, he is a happy and bouncy dog who looks after his toys and wags his tail at passing cats.  It feels a cruel twist of fate, with no explanation for why.

Our vet says that sometimes bad things happen to good people.

Working Cocker Spaniel

People without dogs won’t understand how much a part of my family he is.

Fergus is my child; he gave me a reason to get out the house and go for a walk everyday when recovering from illness, he was there (licking my face) when my husband proposed and there again, pulling at his bow tie when we got married.   He comforted me through the loss of a baby and protected me from a boisterously large dog when I was unstable on my crutches.

He is my darling, and the love of my life.

Thankfully, there is a bright side.   Radiotherapy may give him several more years with us.  Fergus is young and fit, and although the chance is remote, he may pull through this and have the chance to chase many more pheasants.   We will know more in the next week or two.

And of course, as with so many tales of spinning plates, as one part of my life falls apart, our well laid plans crumble, something unexpected happens.

In this case, it is something that we have hoped for for a long time and we should be exceptionally excited about.  In fact, if it weren’t for the news that our darling little boy is so poorly, then we would definitely be more than a little bit excited about the big change ahead.

I can’t tell you what it is yet – but no, its not a baby! But I promise to share more next month.

Working Cocker Spaniel

In the meantime, I’ll be looking after my darling pooch, investigating our options, and trying not to keep our time together as happy and joyous as it can be.

C x

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  1. Cheryl
    November 4, 2017 / 3:31 pm

    Hi, I started following your blogs after I bought your black dress online, I’m so sorry about your fur baby. I have a little cairn called Emily and 4 cats and I know what you mean, they are not ‘pets’ they are family. I hope you get some good news and radiotherapy will give him more timex

    • November 4, 2017 / 9:17 pm

      Thank you Cheryl, I’ll be sure to keep everyone posted and all the kind thoughts mean a lot!

  2. November 4, 2017 / 5:03 pm

    I am loving that blue jumper looks so good and perfect for this time of year too.

  3. Zoë Meers
    November 4, 2017 / 7:45 pm

    Oh honey, I’m so sorry that it wasn’t good news for Fergus – I’m sending all the positive vibes I possess that the radiotherapy gives you many more years with him. x

  4. November 4, 2017 / 7:46 pm

    Oh honey, I’m so sorry that it wasn’t good news for Fergus – I’m sending all the positive vibes I possess that the radiotherapy gives you many more years with him. x

  5. November 4, 2017 / 8:28 pm

    Oh I am so sorry to hear about Fergus, what a worrying and desperately sad time for you. We had a dog with cancer and it was so difficult to see him suffer, I hope the radiotherapy remains effective for both of you. xxx

    • November 4, 2017 / 9:13 pm

      Thank you Laura and I’m sorry to hear about your pooch. Did you have any kind of treatment?
      I’m really confused as to what to do.

  6. November 4, 2017 / 10:12 pm

    Hoping Fergus can bounce back,I am that it was quite a start seeing his nose bleed like that!
    My cheetah is my family as well….

  7. November 5, 2017 / 2:00 am

    Ahh I’m really sorry to hear that your boy is poorly, I hope the radiotherapy helps him and gives you lots more time to enjoy together. Mich x

  8. November 5, 2017 / 2:57 pm

    Sending you much love, so sorry to hear you’ve had some challenging times that can’t be easy.

  9. November 5, 2017 / 6:29 pm

    I am so sorry to hear about your dog and being so young as well it’s heartbreaking. I’ve got a 14 year old Dalmatian who’s been struggling a lot lately and we might have to make that horrible decision soon. Just create as many happy memories as you can x

  10. November 5, 2017 / 11:47 pm

    I definitely agree that life is all about keeping those spinning plates, spinning. I’m so sorry to hear about your dog, he’s adorable. I hope radiotherapy can help him xx

  11. November 6, 2017 / 1:54 am

    Sorry to hear about Fergus. It’s horrible when things like that happen

  12. November 6, 2017 / 8:24 am

    All my fingers and toes crossed for Fergus, sometimes they can be such resilient little things so stay hopeful. He’s a gorgeous boy, and however much time he has left at least you’ll know you’ve given him the happiest life and he’ll love you till the end. It’s so true that they become your family so quickly, my doggy is basically my child and I don’t care if people think that’s weird! Good luck with his treatment xx

  13. November 6, 2017 / 12:38 pm

    I’m so sorry to hear about your dog, he looks so young and like such a sweetheart. I hope he can enjoy the rest of his life and that it’s not too troublesome for him in his remaining time. At least you had the chance to be with him which I’m sure he appreciates. All the best xx

  14. November 6, 2017 / 8:59 pm

    Oh I am so sorry to read about your doggy and have everything crossed that radiotherapy will extend his life. Can’t wait to hear what your news is! Kaz x

  15. November 6, 2017 / 9:05 pm

    Oh sweetheart I am so sorry to hear of this diagnosis. Fergus is an absolute darling, and I send lots of love and wishes that the radiotherapy can give you more years together xxx

  16. November 6, 2017 / 9:09 pm

    Sorry to hear about your dog. I hope radiotherapy helps him. Don’t lose hope though, miracles can happen.

  17. November 7, 2017 / 4:26 am

    I am so sorry to hear that about your dog. It really saddens when your lifetime partner gets sick. Hope the radiotherapy works out!

  18. November 7, 2017 / 11:05 am

    Oh I’m so sorry to hear about poor Fergus, he looks like such a happy dog. I hope the options for his treatment are successful…hugs x

  19. November 7, 2017 / 2:52 pm

    Aw lovely, I am so sorry to hear about Fergus. You’ve taken some lovely photos of him and your outfits in this post. I’d love that jumper, it looks so cosy, perfect for walks x

  20. November 7, 2017 / 4:02 pm

    Oh poor Fergus, hope the radiotherapy works for him and you get your work/life balance back under control

  21. November 7, 2017 / 8:28 pm

    I am so sorry about your dog. This is such sad news but I do love your outlook on life and I feel like you have things sorted and know how to spin plates! Even when a few fall that’s ok it’s the getting the plates back up off the floor and repairing or replacing them that matter keep smiling x x

  22. November 13, 2017 / 4:03 pm

    So so sorry to hear the sad news about Fergus, sometimes life is incredibly cruel. I hope you manage to have lots of happy days with him in the meantime.